What is Countdown Theater?

Countdown Theater is a roaming, improv-focused pop-up space based in New York City. We seek out non-traditional venues, rent them for short periods, and program unique shows, classes, and media projects loosely guided by central themes. Though we emphasize improv, we welcome participants from across the artistic spectrum.

The first version of Countdown Theater ran from February 1, 2017 to March 16, 2017, in the basement of a mixed-use building in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Shows ran on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday nights at 8:30 PM. The theme was community.

The second version of Countdown Theater popped up from August 17, 2017 through August 19, 2017, at the HCC Studio Theatre in the Ybor City neighborhood of Tampa, Florida, as the inaugural 321 Improv Festival.

The third and current version of Countdown Theater will be open for approximately two weeks per month from December 2017 through March 2018, in the basement of a mixed-use building in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The December edition will run from December 7 through December 17. The theme will be Season’s Greetings!

Where is Countdown Theater?

The current address is 141 S. 5th St, Office West, #2, between Driggs and Bedford. You have to descend a set of stairs to get there, and then press the buzzer marked #2. There will be minimal signage, so please remain alert.

Who’s behind this?

The founders and artistic directors of Countdown Theater are Kelly Buttermore and Justin Peters of the national touring improv duo From Justin to Kelly.

Why a pop-up improv space?

Because improv itself is an ephemeral pursuit, and we thought it would be cool to create a venue that was similarly impermanent: if you weren’t here, then you missed it. Furthermore, a short-term sublease gives us free reign to experiment with creating and curating a theatrical experience while avoiding the sorts of responsibilities, hassles, and drama that often plague established improv institutions and their constituencies. We won’t be around long enough for anyone to entrench themselves, there are no levels systems or hierarchies, and there’s no “getting in on the ground floor,” since we’ll be dismantling the structure soon after it’s erected.

But you do have classes, right?

Yes, occasionally, but you’re not required to take them in order to perform with Countdown.

How much is admission?

The suggested donation is $10, though we won’t turn you away if you can’t afford a ticket. All revenues go toward our overhead costs.

Do performers at Countdown Theater have to pay for bottled water?

Emphatically not.