1. Who Are “The Mads”?
We played the Mad Scientists Dr. Clayton Forrester (Trace Beaulieu) and his lovable bumbling evil henchman TV’s Frank (Frank Conniff) on the Peabody Award-winning TV series Mystery Science Theater 3000, which ran from 1988-1999 on Comedy Central and the Sci-Fi Channel. Our characters shot their janitor and temp employees, Joel and Mike respectively, into space on the Satellite of Love and tortured them and their robot companions by making them watch cheesy old movies, which Mike/Joel, Crow, and Tom Servo “riffed”. In our new live show, we still riff movies, so the name “The Mads” just made sense.
2. Will You Play A Theater Near Me?
Yes please! We will happily fly across the US (and even internationally if we can swing it!) to play where you live. But we don’t work like your typical comedy tour, with a shmancy booking agent who calls lots of theaters for us to play all in a row. We book shows one at a time via venue recommendations we get from you, our wonderful devoted fans, which is why we need you to talk to your local theaters and clubs to find out who’s interested! When you get the name of a place that fits the bill (see our venue requirements below), please post it on our Facebook wall, or email our representative Zoe Plait at firstname.lastname@example.org.
3. What Kinds of Venues Do You Play?
Small theaters, clubs, film festivals, conventions, corporate events, you name it! We like to keep our shows small and friendly, between 100-300 seats, so we can shake all your hands after the show. We have tons of fun on the road, so as much as we’d like to do free shows, we usually don’t play rental spaces or volunteer events unless we’re sure we can make a profit. (Or unless you pay us in free hot dogs for life. Mmmm… hot dogs.)
4. What’s All This About A Comedy Writing Workshop?
Ever wanted to riff like a professional? Whenever we can, we offer a riff-writing workshop on the afternoon before our shows that’s open to everyone. Students learn from the comedy writing masters themselves as they riff a terrible movie with us and a small group of other students. We give tips on the writing process, tell behind-the-scenes stories from the Mystery Science Theater 3000 writing room, and record the group’s jokes like a real MST3K script. Whether you’re a professional movie-riffer or a curious new fan, it’s an intimately educational and fun experience for everyone.
5. Are You Rifftrax?
Nope, those’re our other MST3K alumni friends Bill Corbett, Mike Nelson, and Kevin Murphy, and we encourage you to check out their movie riffing project at www.rifftrax.com.
6. Are You Cinematic Titanic?
Not anymore. We used to be, along with MST3K alumni Mary Jo Pehl, J. Elvis Weinstein, Joel Hodgson, and good friend Dave “Gruber” Allen, but CT’s live tour ended in 2013. Now it’s just Trace and Frank, sleek, smooth, and ready to serve pipin’ hot.
7. Will You Be A Part of Joel’s New MST3K Revival Project?
We’re very sorry to disappoint, but no. Due to time and schedule restraints, we won’t be returning to make new episodes of MST3K. But the upside is that we get to be meeting you personally on the road instead.
8. Where Can I Watch MST3K?
The cool guys over at Rifftrax have started selling episodes on DVD through their website and giving a portion of the profits to the show’s original crew – including us. However, we only get residual dough if you buy through Rifftrax.com, not Amazon or Shout Factory, so please check their site for the ever-growing list of titles for sale!
8. What Other Projects Are You Working On?
Along with John Fuglesang, Frank currently cohosts Tell Me Everything, a live Sirius XM radio show that broadcasts every Mon-Fri from 2:00-5:00 EST. You can also listen to all four installments of his free podcast, Podhouse 90, here. And for all you New Yorkers, Frank is still king of the open mic circuit.
Trace stars as A.R.T. the lovable bitter robot alongside MST3K co-creator Joel Hodgson in Paul Feig’s TV series Other Space, which is streaming for free now on Yahoo Screen. He is also the author of Silly Rhymes For Belligerent Children, which is illustrated by the brilliant artist Len Peralta.