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STL Up Late is a weekly late night comedy talk show for St. Louis television.
574 backers pledged $38,082 to help bring this project to life.

About

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$38,082

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Every late night show should have it’s own house band, right? From The Max Weinberg 7 to The Roots, it’s a staple of the late night genre.

To have both a guest band and a house band we will need double the microphones and an extra camera. If we hit our stretch goal, it will give us the capability to add our very own house band to the show!

 STL Up Late is a TV show that shines a spotlight on local artists, politicians, media personalities, musicians, business owners and anyone in the St. Louis region doing something worth sharing. The show has been around since 2013 as a live theater show, and with an offer on the table from local CBS affiliate, KMOV, STL Up Late is preparing for it's move to television.

Eric chatting with Launch Code during TV pilot.
Eric chatting with Launch Code during TV pilot.

STL Up Late host Eric Christensen began his comedy career in the small town of Murray, Kentucky. While pursuing that career, he eventually moved to Chicago where he performed and studied at iO Theater, Second City, CIC Theater and Comedysportz, performing with a number of recognized improv teams.

After moving to St. Louis and looking for a new outlet for his comedy, Eric found himself watching reruns of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon while home with his newborn daughter in the spring of 2013. It was then that the idea for a show combining sketch comedy, the elements of late night favorites -- all with a local flair -- began.

Looking to bring this idea to life, Eric pitched the show to local filmmaker, and STL Up Late producer, Josh McNew. Together the two went on to finalize the concept and invited a small group of seasoned improvisers and comedians to come together for the first STL Up Late writers meeting. By October 2013, the group was ready to produce its first show at the Satori Theatre, which for the next two years, STL Up Late would call home.

Writers meeting at Nebula Coworking.
Writers meeting at Nebula Coworking.

In that time, STL Up Late began to gain a following and some recognition. The show was named by the Riverfront Times as one of the best comedy shows in the city, was added to the prestigious A-List by St. Louis Magazine, and celebrated many sold out shows. From time to time, a famous face would even stop by to see the show and hang out with the cast and crew.

(From left) The STL Up Late cast with Tony Hale (Arrested Development) & Price Is Right Announcer George Gray with Eric Christensen
(From left) The STL Up Late cast with Tony Hale (Arrested Development) & Price Is Right Announcer George Gray with Eric Christensen

STL Up Late has produced more than 40 shows over the last two years, each featuring a local guest interview and musical performance. From local alderman, chefs and brewers, to artists and musicians, there’s been many accomplished and talented people at Eric’s desk to tell their stories, but we know there are many more to be told here, in St. Louis.

STL Up Late is uniquely St. Louis, however that hasn’t stopped the writers and performers from branching out to learn from some of the best. The group traveled to New York City and took advantage of a number of opportunities, including a behind-the-scenes look at The Colbert Report, dress rehearsal for Saturday Night Live, a taping of Late Night with Seth Meyers, and a late night talk show writing workshop.

The group scores tickets to see a live taping of Late Night with Seth Meyers.
The group scores tickets to see a live taping of Late Night with Seth Meyers.

The trip to New York proved to be such a tremendous learning experience, STL Up Late ventured out once again - this time to Hollywood. There, the cast took in shows from the world famous Groundlings theater company, @midnight with Chris Hardwick, and Jimmy Kimmel Live, among others, to further understand what it takes to make a quality TV show. STL Up Late writer and performer Kate Cole even got a little screen time as a contestant on The Price is Right!

Writer/Performer Kate Cole (left) as a contestant on The Price Is Right.
Writer/Performer Kate Cole (left) as a contestant on The Price Is Right.

On July 27, cast and crew packed up all the props, set and equipment at Satori Theatre to prepare for a move to a brand new theatre in Grand Center, The Marcelle. There, STL Up Late will begin filming the show to air on KMOV.

The Marcelle is a 1,750 square foot theatre generously funded by the Kranzbergs and managed by the nonprofit arts organization in their name. The space will be shared with New Line Theatre Company and features state-of-the-art lighting and sound system, as well as a full bar in the lobby.

Artist rendering of The Marcelle, where STL Up Late will begin filming the show to air on KMOV
Artist rendering of The Marcelle, where STL Up Late will begin filming the show to air on KMOV

Every week for the past two years, some of the funniest minds in St. Louis have assembled in a conference room to pitch jokes, sketches, and videos, lampooning the current events surrounding YOUR city, covering the people and places that interest you directly. From behind their laptops and bags of chips, the show is crafted to be different and better than the last.

The writers explore trending news headlines, personal stories, and the week’s guest for opportunities to apply their comedic instincts. And with day jobs like firefighter, math teacher, nurse and nanny, each voice lends the show a unique perspective on the city around us.

Writers missing from photo: Rafe Williams & Kenny Kinds
Writers missing from photo: Rafe Williams & Kenny Kinds

The production crew of STL Up Late is comprised of talented individuals who spend their day jobs working on feature films, national television shows and YouTube channels that boast millions of subscribers.

Like the writers, the crew has worked together for two years crafting dozens of video shorts, and capturing live musical performances and show clips for online distribution. On top of that, they run the weekly live show, leaving audiences with the impression of a professional production. Led by Joshua McNew, this is a team that is eager to push the envelope of what a late night talk show can look and feel like in St. Louis.

Crew missing from photo: Holly Rains, Casey Hartig, Adam Huber, Patrick Frenking, Taylor Bevirt & Candice Moran
Crew missing from photo: Holly Rains, Casey Hartig, Adam Huber, Patrick Frenking, Taylor Bevirt & Candice Moran

 STL Up Late brings you a mix of traditional late night talk show entertainment paired with a heap of local flavor. By backing this project, you’re investing in something new to do when planning a night out or on the couch. We guarantee whether you watch the show in its entirety on TV, online or in our live audience, each experience will be unique.

Video Short from the Pilot episode - written by Kate Cole

For you St. Louisans with something to share - whether it be music, business or art - STL Up Late will be a great resource to help spread the word and raise awareness for your project. 

It takes a ton of time and people to make this show happen, and none of our team has ever been paid to do it. We do it because it’s fun, and we believe in what it brings to this city.

In May 2015, we successfully created a broadcast-ready pilot episode. This was our first chance to show the media world what our dedicated team was capable of. We borrowed equipment from friends and rented what we were not able to find locally. And after months of preparation, rehearsal and finally a taped performance, we had something we were proud of, and that a network saw value in, too.

With your support we can keep this up. We can make more people laugh, share more stories, and feature more local bands, all year round.

Your contribution will help fund: 

  • A new set built for TV 
  • Camera equipment 
  • Audio recording equipment
  • Studio equipment

We have some awesome rewards set up for you. Everything from t-shirts and tickets to the live show, to having STL Up Late taped in your living room, so check them out and be a part of the next chapter in STL Up Late’s history!

Limited amount of t-shirts available to backers only.
Limited amount of t-shirts available to backers only.

Risks and challenges

If we are fully funded we will make a broadcast version of the show. The only risk we face is, some of the rewards might not be met on time if our network decided to pull the plug. In that instance we will still produce the show for online outlets while we search for a new broadcast home ensuring all rewards are met.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $5 or more About $5

    Thanks for chipping in! We'll thank you personally in a tweet.

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    Pledge $10 or more About $10

    You're amazing. So amazing we'll thank you personally in a tweet, and if you'd like, our cast and crew will follow YOU on Twitter for a year!

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    Pledge $13 or more About $13

    Did you know that if every one our Facebook followers chipped in just $13 this project would be fully funded?! For doing your part, we will thank you personally in an STL Up Late Facebook post.

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    Pledge $15 or more About $15

    You've earned a ticket to one of our live shows during the first season and a behind-the-scenes look at a dress rehearsal! This applies for any show (other than the premiere). Dates TBD and subject to availability.

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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    You just earned yourself a seat in the live studio audience of our season premiere! Date TBD.

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    Pledge $25 or more About $25

    Get your very own limited edition STL Up Late t-shirt -- for backers only!

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    Ships to Only United States
    Limited 128 backers
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    Pledge $35 or more About $35

    Get your very own limited edition STL Up Late t-shirt -- for backers only -- AND a ticket to one of our live shows during the first season (other than the premiere). Dates TBD and subject to availability.

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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    You deserve some public recognition. You'll be listed as a backer in the credits for every episode in the first season.

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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge $150 or more About $150

    You'll get the VIP treatment at one of our shows during the first season, including the opportunity to hang out in the green room with our cast, crew and guests. Dates subject to availability.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Come on down! You can be a contestant on an STL Up Late-original game show segment, like "Craigslist Price is Right" or "You Got the Gist of It!" Dates TBD.

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    Pledge $250 or more About $250

    Hone your comedy craft! This reward will provide you with a voucher to take a class with Up Late Comedy Lab, like video sketch writing, taught by STL Up Late writers and producers. Classes are typically taught one day a week for 8 weeks. Dates TBD.

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  12. Select this reward

    Pledge $300 or more About $300

    For four seasons, a framed photo of St. Louis' native son, Scott Bakula, has graced Eric's desk during the show. This season, you can supply any FCC approved photo to sit prominently on his desk for one show.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    Impress your date by taking them to a live taping of STL Up Late for dinner and a show. You two will enjoy a catered meal on the stage while we tape an episode -- air time probable but not promised. Caterer and dates TBD.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    Want to be in the spotlight? We will produce a private video of Eric interviewing you on the set of STL Up Late, which will be available to you in a digital format to share wherever you'd like!

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    Start practicing your vocal warm-ups. You get to announce the show for one whole episode! Welcome our audience, introduce the cast, and announce our incredible guests. Date TBD.

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    Reward no longer available 1 backer
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    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    You know that 3-second video that is played at the end of a television show that promotes the production company, etc.? It's called a splash screen, and for $3,000 you can supply any FCC approved 3-second video or photo that we will use at the end of every episode during the first season!

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    Bring the idea of watching STL Up Late from the couch to a whole new level. For $5,000 we'll film an entire episode live from your home! Backer must live in the St. Louis region.

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Funding period

- (32 days)