Mystery Science Theater 3000 fans, take note: Trace Beaulieu and Frank Conniff, writers and stars of the Peabody Award winning series, are coming to Pensacola.
WSRE’s will present Beaulieu and Conniff as part of its Public Square Speakers Series at 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 26 in the Jean & Paul Amos Performance Studio. Admission is free, and the event is sponsored in part by Gulf Power and Pensacon.
“MST3K,” created by writer and comedian Joel Hodgson, premiered in 1988 on KTMA in Minneapolis, Minn. and quickly became a cult hit. The series typically featured low-budget B-movies, during which the show’s main characters poke fun and crack jokes at the movie’s expense. From 1989 to 1999, the show aired nationally on The Comedy Channel (later Comedy Central) and the SCI-FI Channel (now Syfy).
Beaulieu and Coniff will speak about their creative journey with the comedy series and the show’s impact on social TV. Following their talk, they will “get into character” for the clever B-movie improvisation for which they are renowned, performing their “The Mads Are Back!” show now touring the U.S. at small theaters, clubs, film festivals and conventions.
Beaulieu and Conniff wrote and acted for the show, playing mad scientists Dr. Clayton Forrester and TV’s Frank. Beaulieu was also the puppeteer for the “Crow T. Robot” character. WSRE began airing “MST3K” on April 2, following Tom Baker episodes of “Doctor Who,” as part of a new Saturday late-night programming lineup.
Besides “MST3K,” Beaulieu has written for “America’s Funniest Videos;” played a recurring character on “Freaks and Geeks;” had cameo appearances on “The West Wing” and “Arrested Development;” and is the voice of A.R.T., the robot on Paul Feig’s “Other Space” on Yahoo TV. Conniff has written, produced and/or acted on “Sabrina the Teenage Witch,” “The Drew Carey Show,” “The New Tom Green Show,” “Invader Zim” and other shows. He has written and produced for Air America Radio and currently appears on the SiriusXM radio show, “Tell Me Everything;” writes, produces and directs original musical comedy radio plays for his podcast, “Podhouse90;” and writes and performs in “Cartoon Dump,” a monthly stage show in New York.
“The Mads Are Back!” performance at WSRE will feature a family-friendly film chosen by Beaulieu and Conniff for this event. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Reservations are encouraged and can be made online at wsre.org/speakers.