Emily Zawisza’s winding road to Fort Worth’s Four Day Weekend involved the following: Louisiana State University, an unfortunate and abrupt exit from filmmaking, the University of North Texas, a U-Haul van, Chicago, Second City, iO, Groupon, and The Onion.
Later this month, the improv group Four Day Weekend celebrates 25 years in business. It operates in its original location, in Sundance Square, but expanded into Dallas in 2018, opening in a converted church in Lowest Greenville. Zawisza often hosts in Dallas, but her main gig is director of corporate sales, merging the group’s “yes, and …” culture—a structural way to encourage discussion and experimentation, as well as being a tenet of improv—with the needs of its corporate clients.
With the Dallas location, Zawisza says, “we had the chance to really create what we wanted.” During the pandemic, that turned into a streaming studio that allowed the group to keep doing business: Fort Worth Mayor Betsy Price’s retirement party, a gig for the U.S. Men’s National (soccer) Team, the Vienna/Fort Worth-based eye care company Alcon’s global regulatory affairs meeting. All sorts of stuff.
That revenue kept Four Day humming while it was unsafe to do what it does: perform, in person, for an audience that’s sharing space and sharing air. Zawisza helped the show go on.
And about that show. Next weekend, Four Day has some special stuff lined up to celebrate its 25th year. The original cast will be in Fort Worth on May 20 at 8 p.m. and Dallas on May 21 at 8 p.m. The younger cast—which the group is calling “The Futures”—will perform in Dallas on May 20 and Fort Worth on the 21st. All the details, including tickets, are right here.
Zawisza joined us at the Old Monk to record an episode of EarBurner. Listen with your favorite podcatcher or with the embedded player after the jump. Oh, and revisit S. Holland Murphy’s D Magazine profile of the group from 2017 right here.