all photos: ClarissaVillondo, Nicholas Karlin, Jeff Martin (Those Portraits!), Franz Mahr
Bentzen Ball this year was AMAZING. So AMAZING that, despite the hurricane, more of you came out to it THAN EVER and our photographers submitted more photos of it THAN EVER. (did you check out the amazing behind-the-portrait scenes post? and the photobooth set, courtesy of our friends at OM Digital is coming)
We’ll let you enjoy the photos below but first some quick notes:
- Thank you all for coming!!!!
- Thank you to all our amazing (and frankly, legendary) talent: Jonathan Katz, Tig Notaro (officially DC’s comedy BFF and our festival curator), Jim Gaffigan, Bill Burr (SURPRISE!), Tim Heidecker, WHAM CITY, Church Night, Jessica Williams, Phoebe Robinson, Morgan Murphy, Janeane Garofalo, W. Kamau Bell, Motherknuckle, Nore Davis, Jacqueline Novak, Stephanie Alynne, Brett Gelman, Karen & Drennon, Stephen Wilber, Ben Kronberg, Mary Lynn Rajskub, Ian Abramson, Haywood Turnipseed, Brandon Wetherbee, Jamel Johnson, John F. O’Donnell, Andrew Bucket, Nor Quarrington, Jessy Morner-Ritt, Allison Lane, Brian Weitz, Brendan Canty, Ryan Little, and everyone at Story District.
- Thank you to all our staff for kicking ass on no sleep this weekend
- Thank you our venues: Lincoln, Howard, DC Improv and Wonderland
- Thank you to Planned Parenthood for being our non-profit partner and for everything you do every day
- Thank you to Heineken for presenting all our Lincoln shows and keeping the dream alive (don’t forget: it is permanent Heineken happy hour at Ben’s Next Door if you show your Bentzen ticket)
- thank you to Nando’s and Jameson and W Hotel DC for sponsoring the festival and keeping us well fed, well rested and well imbibed
- Thank you to Moleskine for being our official notebook provider for 2nd year running, keep an eye on social for some very special festival content from them
- Thank you to Absolut Elyx for hosting 50% of our after-hour hangs
- Follow us on follow us on FACEBOOK / TWITTER / INSTAGRAM and use #BentzenBall and #BYThings ALL THE TIME.
- Thank you thank you thank you and SEE YOU ALL NEXT YEAR?
DAY BY DAY BY DAY BY DAY BREAKDOWN BELOW:
Thursday: was the opening night. And what an opening night it was: a very sold out 20 anniversary edition of Dr. Katz. LIVE. With Tig, Jim Gaffigan (!!!), Janeane Garofalo, Morgan Murphy and Stephanie Allynne joining Tig for some couples therapy at the end. Plus a bonus pre-show with Ben Kronberg! Check out the FULL PHOTO SET here:
Friday had three shows: YMTE Live @ Wonderland (special Bentzen Addition), Bosom Buddies at Lincoln Theatre (with Surprise guest BILL BURR, YOU GUYS! AT A PLANNED PARENTHOOD BENEFIT! ANYTHING CAN HAPPEN AT BENTZEN BALL!) and NOT FUNNY! our collaboration with Story District DC @ Howard Theatre. So, lets dive in.
The Tig hug series:
Howard show with Story District:
and then a classic afterparty at the W POV:
in the AM, everyone needed that sweet sweet Coexist cold brew:
Saturday: it hurricaned so we just stacked some great shows all in a row: first, in the afternoon was the 7 Minutes in Purgatory with Ian Abramson, and presented by the very spicy, very delicious Nando’s Peri-Peri which saw the likes of Tig, Brett Gelman, Morgan Murphy and more be locked into a room with soundproof headphones and performing to an audience they couldn’t see. If it sounds weird it is because it was. If you missed it – you missed out.
Then: two shows at the Lincoln in the evening: Blaria Live! with Jessica Williams, their guests W. Kamau Bell (who later called this “the best night of my life” on instagram, so he must have meant it), Jacqueline Novak, Nore Davis and Janeane Garofalo and the Show of No Return which featured Tim Heidecker, Brett Gelman, WHAM CITY (and the first but certainly not last Bentzen Ball appearance of Officer Cranberry), the always delightful Church Night and the always delightfully undelightful Motherknuckle.
But, lets start from the beginning: IMPROV
then, back to Lincoln: in front of and backstage sneak peaks
Blaria was first:
Plus a very special, very weird Show of No Return featuring all of THESE delightful humans:
and it all ended in the afterparty at the Gibson Guitar Showroom:
Sunday saw our very very very sold-out closing night and Tig’s reunion with her brother and his Rhythm Puppets breakdancing crew. Plus, Janeane Garofalo, Karen & Drennon and the soon-to-be-national-treasure that is Steven Wilber. Plus, a Tig set like no other Tig set you expected to see. To say it was special is an understatement, to say it was the speacialest is probably coming close to accurate.
this is the part where Tig breakdances:
and a little winddown at Mockinbird Hill:
till next year, we’ll leave you with these classic portrait outtakes: