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In a World: Dating Show, Where Blind Dates Become Comedy


As if dating in New York City wasn’t enough of a crap shoot, comedian and show creator Emma Vernon, has taken it to the next level with this whimsical hybrid of an improv comedy/dating show known as the In a World: Dating Show. Hosted monthly at the PIT, Vernon channels her inner Jewish grandmother and becomes the ultimate matchmaker, hand selecting two sets of hapless strangers to live out the strangest of dating fantasies live on stage with the help of her delightfully wayward improv team: Bill Schaefer, Bryan Jackson, Melanie Owens, Raquel Palmas, Sarah Boatright and Yaari Nadav Tal. The two couples are pre-selected before the show and are experiencing an actual blind date while the randomly selected scene is brought to life by the aforementioned UCB trained improvisers. All the awkwardness of a real first date, with the added bonus of an infinite array of characters, creatures, and calamities all made up on the spot.


In this month’s show, Emma Vernon kicked things off with the bubbly excitement of a golden retriever who just heard the word “park.” Her effervescence was contagious, and after a sprightly set of jokes and an introduction to the show, the audience was as eager as she was for the shenanigans ahead.


Before the main event, we were treated to a stand-up set from the beautifully bodacious Corrine Fisher, co-creator of the esteemed anti-slut shaming podcast, Guys We Fucked. With a wry smile and cynical tone, Fisher had her own take on sex, drugs, and dating that complemented the more chipper introduction from Vernon and further warmed the crowd for the dating debacles about to ensue.


[Photo credit: Marco Vazquez]

First couple to the stage, Lana and Ari, were briefly introduced to the audience as well as each other, quickly followed by a three-person improv team. Lana drew the scene from a random bag of suggestions: the park. An innocuous setting, but as the couple attempted the usual first date small talk, they were perpetually besieged by errant frisbee throwers, wild animals, and the Central Park chair police. Laughing along at each unexpected turn, it was hard to know if the strange and constant interruptions were helping or hindering Lana and Ari as they navigated the minefield of imaginary obstacles around them.


[Photo credit: Marco Vazquez]

Vernon provided a brief interlude between dates, continuing the theme of the evening with an anecdote of a hilariously bad date from her past, complete with actual text messages and cringe-worthy quotes that are only possible in the wild world of the NYC dating scene.


[Photo credit: Marco Vazquez]

Next up were Karen and Justin, a pair of singles that chose the almost too-familiar scene of a C-grade restaurant. As they valiantly attempted to get to know one another, the “restaurant” was overtaken by rude guests, a cockroach infestation, and eavesdroppers who interrupted (or assisted?) the date with questions about whether the couple liked children, and what shows they were binging on Netflix. All things considered, a pretty standard dinner date.


[Photo credit: Marco Vazquez]

In a World: Dating Show is an entertaining combination of schadenfreude, spontaneity, and the hopeful romanticism that can only come from the magic of a first date. With the helpful contributions of New York comedians and improvisers- these are dates that can happen anywhere, where anything is possible, and at the end of it all you might still find yourself thinking, Eh. I’ve had worse. Highly recommend catching the next show at The PIT on May 19th at 6:30pm. You don't want to miss it!

#EmmaVernon #CorinneFisher #BillSchaefer #BryanJackson #MelanieOwens #RaquelPalmas #YaariNadavTal #SarahBoatright #InAWorldDatingShow #ThePit #UCB #improv #showreview #JanessaKowal #StellarUnderground #bestupandcomingcomedians #newyorkcity

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