Danny Gallagher

QuizProv: Faster and Funnier

QuizProv QuizProv takes place tonight at 11:59 p.m. at the Dallas Comedy House (DCH) What is it? Why is it? How is it? Glenn Smith and Danny Gallagher have answers.

How has this version of QuizProv changed since the first performance?

Glenn: We have worked really hard to turbocharge the format to make the show shorter and quicker, but still deliver as many laughs as in the longer show. You might call us Faster and Funnier 3: Dorkeo Drift.

Danny: We really wanted to work on streamlining the whole show without sacrificing too much of what we think makes it work. As we all know, timing is the hardest part of doing any show and not just in terms of finishing on time but also finding that groove where you're not rushing and overlooking the funny stuff that we and our players come up with on the spot. We're also doing this on a much bigger stage in a brand new place, and I'm most excited about that because I take up a lot of space and I almost fell off that tiny little plot in front of the curtain on the stage at the old Commerce building.

What can the audience expect from the show?

Glenn: First off, six really talented and hysterical comedians and improvisers will be on that stage battling out it for Quizprov supremacy. They are being handed some really clever and interesting trivia games to play and the accelerated format will force them to stay on their toes. Bloodshed is not out of the question.

Danny: We've got six of the funniest people at DCH, not counting Glenn and myself, who we know are just going to knock it out of the park and Glenn also came up with something clever for them: We let our Facebook followers name their teams. One of our contestants will also win a brand new toaster. In terms of Glenn, Clarence [Murugen] and myself, we're most proud of the games we've written for them to play. We can't wait to show them off and see the puzzled looks on our contestants' faces.

How do contestants get selected?

Glenn: Most of them owe us money, generally due to gambling debts and addictions to hard candy. It makes it easy for us that funny people live really out of control lives, meaning you can exploit them for a handful of Werther’s Originals.

Danny: We hold open tryouts complete a rigorous knowledge test that covers a broad range of the knowledge we feel a contestant must possess in order to be a good competitor on the show. Then we hold a mock game with questions that are much, much harder than the questions we ask them on the show and depending on who gives us the most goods and/or services by the end of the session, we tell DCH who will be on it. Actually, we just pick people who we think would be funny and seem like the kind of people we'd invite for a typical game night, ask them if they are available, and tell them when we need them at the theater.

What is your favorite part of the show?

Glenn: The participants’ responses to the questions, for sure. First, they get that look of panic that seems to indicate “how the heck am I supposed to answer that”, but then an idea appears and their eyes get big and you know they have a comedic gem. We have received so many responses that we could have never anticipated. The whole process of watching Nikki Gasparo realize that an answer was her most hated movie of all time (Love, Actually) and exploding out of her chair in a mix of delight and disgust was priceless.

Danny: I love the writing most of all, because I've always believed that comedy and games are something I do as part of my writing living and they go so great together and they aren't utilized enough together although now that late night is filling up with game related programming, that might change soon. I also just love being the announcer, even though I may not have the right voice for it. I get to yell into a microphone and scream "CAAAAAAAAR" or "A new blender!" I actually wanted to be a TV announcer like Don Pardo or Gary Owens or Guy Smiley when I was a little kid, because they had all the best jokes and they never had to fight for the laugh. Just the thought of hearing Don Pardo speak Spanish when Jimmy Smitts hosted Saturday Night Live still makes me laugh.

Which is better: a sweet bacon dish or a savory bacon dish?

Glenn: A sweet bacon dish on top of a savory bacon dish washed down with a bacon-infused cocktail while wearing a Ron Swanson t-shirt.

Danny: It's funny you mention that because I've just written a story for CNET on that very subject. It depends on whether I'm eating a meal on a plane or if I'm on the ground. A recent study showed that the flavor of savory meals, also known by the tastebud umami, are enhanced by the decibel levels of the cabin and it also dulls foods and drinks with sweeter tastes. So that explains why airlines sell so many $7 Bloody Marys, which they should serve with a strip of bacon as garnish.

QuizProv is a free show. And while you're there to watch the show, you should really buy the Best Friend sandwich at the bar.