The Torch Theatre has its own downtown Phoenix space for longform improv

Downtown Phoenix has something really amazing, something that makes it stand out in the national comedy scene. It’s called The Torch Theatre, and it’s the only space dedicated to long-form improv in Arizona. The theater just opened this year, and it’s wonderful to see this venue created by such a talented group of improvisers. The space is used to host classes and weekly shows, and the group behind it also puts on the annual Phoenix Improv Festival, which brings in prominent comedians from around the country.

I went to the theater last Saturday for the weekly Cagematch competition, where a challenger team takes on the champion from the previous week. The teams can perform any format they want, from one long scene with a single suggestion to short-form games throughout the show. You never know what you’re going to get, and that’s part of the fun. Audience members determine which team makes it onto the next week.

This was just one of three shows that night, and every Friday and Saturday, there is a ton of programming to choose from. Tickets generally range from $5-$10, and the full schedule can be found here. It’s fun to check out a lot of different types performances, and it’s a great way to get immersed in downtown Phoenix culture.