Sand is made up of three unassuming dudes with varying amounts of facial hair—Scott Nelson, Thomas Kelly and Mike Brunlieb. They may look a bit disheveled, but after seven years of performing together they’ve built up something of a legendary status among fellow improvisers. They had their first theatrical run at The Annoyance this fall and appeared to a standing-room-only crowd at Chemically Imbalanced Comedy during the comedy festival A Jangleheart Circus. As a group they’re able to tap into a darkness that would lead lesser performers to alienate an audience quickly. And yet they pull it off with a strange sense of empathy that allows for full-on laughter at the most unexpected of topics. Comedy is at the core of David Lynch’s most disconcerting work and Sand reminds us that creepy and funny aren’t mutually exclusive.
Best of Chicago 2015