The Group opens for Dennis Miller at NYU - the
first paid gig: $1000 for the whole group.
Meanwhile, they continue doing original
full-scale threatre shows as well as smaller performances in dorms, bars,
colleges, the park, NYU events, etc.
"Enough with the Noise" at the Gene Frankel Theatre
- the fifth all new full length New Group show.
|Michael Black (then Schwartz) and David Wain
meet with an MTV Development assistant to pitch the group for a series.
They are rejected.
Nevertheless, David enlists the group to
create some demo segments for a series being developed at MTV called "You
Wrote It, You Watch It." MTV becomes interested in The New Group.
After weeks of agonizing and hundreds of
potentials, the group chooses a new name: The State: Full-Frontal Comedy.
On Oct 8,9,10 The State: Full-Frontal
Comedy debuts "Molt" - a three-night showcase at the Theatre Off-Park
produced by Jon Bendis and Steven Starr. The show is loosely structured
around a "birth to death" theme, and results in signing with the William
MTV offers The State a contract to create
segments for 13 episodes of "You Wrote It, You Watch It", hosted by Jon
The State drops "Full-Frontal Comedy" from
In November, The State begins work on "You
Wrote It". It is the first time members of the group earn a living from
The State. They produce 28 pieces for no budget, acting as their own cast,
crew and staff.
the summer, The State (with Bendis and Starr) create a series concept for
MTV. They recruit "Almost Live" producer Jim Sharp for the pilot episode
of "The State on MTV". The State theme song is created by Craig Wedren
and Eli Janney.
MTV picks up The State for six episodes.
In September Production begins on The State
on MTV: episodes 101-108. (Shows 104 & 105 are not aired but are combined
into a new show: 107. 108 is a compilation.)
In December, The State appears on MTV's
Jon Stewart Show to promote its new show. They destroy his set.
January, the first cycle wraps and airs. Initial reviews are highly negative,
although ratings are good. MTV takes three months to decide to renew for
six more shows.
In April, The State shows 201-207 production begins.
The ratings for the first cycle curiously increase as the shows rerun.
In July, The State makes the "Miserable
Crap" promo that advertises the show's bad reviews.
MTV renews for 13 more shows, which begin production.
In a New York Times article on January 7, The State
reveals intentions to go to a broadcast network.
In February, seven members of The State
do "Winter on Wheels 1972" - a ten college tour of the east coast. The
show consists of live performance and video never before seen on MTV. All
the shows are sold out.
In March, Shows 307-313 begin production.
The State notifies MTV that they will not
return after the current cycle.
Some Statemembers pull down their pants
at a William Morris TV party. It is published in Variety.
On July 15, the final MTV production period
wraps, and shows 307-313 are delivered.
On July 18, Variety and New York Magazine
simultaneously announce the deal for The State to do a series of specials
on CBS, then go up against SNL in the fall of 1996.
On Aug 7, The State begins work in an office in
Chelsea for the Halloween and New Years specials at CBS. Much of the MTV
production team returns. Founder Todd Holoubek leaves The State, the first
personnel change in over four years. The group now numbers ten.
The Halloween Special gets a glowing four-star
review from Michele Greppi of the New York Post, who originally gave the
MTV series one of the most harshly negative reviews. The review ends "That
was then, this is wow." Aside from the Post review, however, there is almost
no promotion of any kind for the show.
The State's 43rd Annual All-Star Halloween
Special is broadcast on CBS. It gets a low (6.5) share which causes the
CBS programming chief (who has not seen the show or the reviews) to decide
to cancel the New Year's special, ending any further relationship with
Details Magazine publishes "They Died Laughing" a
article by David Lipsky that tells the story of The State's difficult experience
doing the special for CBS.
On January 15, The State begins two weeks
at Compass Point studios in Nassau, Bahamas to record a comedy record for
Warner Brothers. Eli Janney produces.
After the album, the group starts focusing
on individual projects, while developing ideas for a State movie.
The State performs "Hard On Shakespeare"
at MTV's Spring Break in Panama City, FL.
Writing begins on the State book for Hyperion
Press - a fictional travel guide to the United States.
The group sells out Caroline's comedy club
for two barely rehearsed "unplugged" shows, consisting of material from
the series, tour, and college shows. Craig Wedren plays music.
The State's book
("State by State with The State: An Uninformed,
Poorly Researched Guide to the United States")
is released April 17.
On May 23, The State performs a full length live
stage show at the Big Stinkin' International Improv Festival in Austin,
October 19, Kerri, Tom, Showalter and David perform
at the Kennedy Center as part of a tribute to Jonathan Winters.
November 11, the entire group reunites for a performance/retrospective at the New York Comedy Film Festival.
The group reunites in the movies 911! Miami and The Ten
The State gathers at a bar in L.A. after shooting Reno 911! Miami
March: A show of brand new material is performed live by The State at the UCB theater in LA.||
"Corner of the Sky" at UCB Theater
Jan: The entire group performs live at the San Francisco Sketchfest.
"Radio Porno Theater" at Herbst Theater, San Francisco
- F.A.Q - BIOS - EPISODES