This time just two years ago, the folks at Green Gravel Comedy Festival were wrapping up an Indiegogo campaign to get their first event, in 2014, off the ground. Now they’re coming up on year three, and this fledgling fest is jam-packed with even more fantastic programming. The 2016 event, which runs March 4–5, will feature expanded venues (including the Englert Theatre) and new partnerships (n.b., Little Village is a sponsor of this event). They will also collaborate for the first time this year with the University of Iowa School of Art and Art History.
Headlining the 2016 festival is comic, actor and writer Rachel Bloom. She rocketed to fame in 2011 with the cult classic song and video “Fuck Me, Ray Bradbury,” which was nominated for a Hugo award. She has been a writer and performer on several comedy television shows, including Robot Chicken, and has performed with the Upright Citizens Brigade. Bloom is perhaps best known for the show that she created with Aline Brosh McKenna, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend. It was picked up by The CW in early 2015 for its first season. Bloom was recently nominated for a 2016 Golden Globe award for her performance in the lead role.
Also coming to Green Gravel in 2016 is animator Bill Plympton. Nominated for an Academy Award in 1987 for his short, “Your Face,” Plympton is also the creator of the 2013 movie Cheatin’ and is known for his work on MTv’s Liquid Television.
On Monday, Dec. 28, Green Gravel Comedy Festival began accepting submissions from comedians. Submissions will be open through Jan. 22, and full submission guidelines are available on their Facebook page. More line-up announcements are expected soon.