Shortform: (usually on Fridays)
fun and fast-paced improvised theatre, filled with scenes, songs, games, and lots of audience participation and suggestions.


Read more about Improv »
Longform: (usually on Saturdays)
full-length, narrative, genre-driven, completely improvised stories based on audience suggestions.


Read more about Improv »

What Our
Audience Says

 

You’ll leave feeling better than when you arrived.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey) 


The absolute best place for a romantic evening, a wild date, a night out with friends, a date with your parents, a night when you don’t have anyone to hang out with, or just a night you want some incredibly high-quality entertainment. And I admit it, I usually laugh/cry at least twice every time I go! One of my favorite places in the world!

– Eric K, Yelp review


FANTASTIC! Probably the best improv show I’ve ever seen.

- Mengo Z, Yelp review


“You have GOT to see this. It’s entirely improvised. I’ll buy the tickets.” I say that a lot, seriously.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


Best show in town. These guys are the masters of improv.

- Emile C, Yelp review


Fabu fun improv theatre — stories made up and performed on the spot, audience interaction, often dazzling, sometimes moving, usually funny, creative. Theatre tightrope without a net.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


Without a doubt the BEST VALUE in SF entertainment.

- Daniel W, Yelp review


Amazing, engaging, exhilarating improv that transports you to other worlds and really makes you see and feel part of the creative process.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


BATS Improv is my favorite theater in SF.

- Oyo S, Yelp review


It’s only when you’re in the parking lot that you realize neither you nor the actors ever heard those words before and they will never be repeated. It exists only right now yet seems like it had to have been prepared. Magic.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


You are guaranteed to get a great ab workout from all the laughter.

- Zubin I, Yelp review


LOVE them! – These guys have to be the best live theatre deal in town. The chemistry between the players is great, and their shows are really, really funny! Even the dramatic performances have good humor in them, and after single show I can’t believe they aren’t cheating and using a script! 3 of my friends & I have signed up for improv classes after seeing BATS perform – and those are a blast too!

- Stacey Brown, Citysearch review


Come and be surprised how uplifted you’ll feel by the end of the show!

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


I never realized what a true art improv is nor did I know it could be so nuanced, sophisticated and finely tuned. There is a real discipline and depth of skill needed to seem so ably spontaneous and in the moment.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


So much fun. A slam-dunk if you’re looking for a good date-night activity or just a guaranteed laugh.

- KF, Yelp review


It is an outrageously funny experience. You never know what will happen next as the actors are really tuned into the universal funny bone. There are some skits that I saw many years ago that I still remember because they were so creative and hilarious. One can laugh about it again when explaining the scene to others.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


I never go to the Bay Area without seeing a show or two at BATS. If you’re not familiar with improv, this is the place to start. If you’ve been around, these guys are one of the most professional theaters in the country.

- Andy C, Yelp review


A relaxing and invigorating evening of thoughtful laughter and sometimes just silliness with very talented, bright improvisers.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


The shows are top notch with incredibly funny performers.

- Daniel A, Yelp review


Outstanding theatre that is characterized by great acting, remarkable presence and listening skills, a full range of emotional experience, fearlessness, and intelligence.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


This is some of the best improv you will see, ever! They are so talented and wonderful storytellers.

- Rochelle G, Yelp review


A wild, crazy, innovative, fun journey into the unknown!

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


Apart from the talented group of actors and actresses and the very fun different shows they do, the location is awesome. Heading up to Fort Mason and grabbing dinner in nearby Marina/Cow Hollow or the Food Trucks right in Fort Mason — a night at BATS is a night well spent. The tickets are very reasonably priced, the theatre is comfortable, they earn each of these stars flying easily. If I could give them an additional two thumbs up I would.

- Joshua M, Yelp review


Fairly wacky, very professional, you’ll probably laugh very hard, and you’ll feel that — some way or other — they get who you are.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


I love BATS and I continue to travel 66 miles all the way from Tracy and pay 17 bucks for a perfect romantic night on the town.

- Casey K, Yelp review


The improv that changed my mind and caused me to realize that not all improv need be an embarrassing and nerve-wracking case of bad playhouse.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


I go very often and it’s always different and never disappoints. The long-form is a unique form of entertainment — like watching a full play, but made up on the spot. I’m always amazed at how they create a real story line, real characters, and huge laughs – out of thin air. It’s authentic human insight — not shtick.

- Loretta B, Yelp review


 The humor comes from honest human interaction — no phony, boring cliches.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


Some of the performances I have seen are so funny that my friend and I reference them years later!

- Jenn C, Yelp review


Insanely creative and fun; amazing narratives completely improvised like magic; great music to support the action; much more fun than a movie.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


What do I tell someone who’s never heard of BATS? I just take them so they can see it for themselves.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


If you want to laugh until you cry, this is the place to go. Smart, memorable shows that stay with you for years.

- Meike Z, Yelp review


BATS will always surprise, yet is always satisfying on so many levels.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


This beats an average movie night x10.

- Kelsi P, Yelp review


BATS Improv is the gold standard for improv in the San Francisco Bay Area. . . . The Main Stage players create real characters and real stories, yet it is always funny and provocative.

- Shawn B, Yelp review


If you ever need a pick me up and a good reason to laugh, check out a BATS Improv show. I’ve been to a handful of their shows, and I crack up every time.

- Kelly T, Yelp review


Scenes felt so natural between the improvisers that it felt more like I was watching actual life situations play out, as opposed to entertainment generated from the actors’ heads.

- Jennifer S, Yelp review


Excellent! I love this place.

- Rod I, Yelp review


We’ve gone to BATS about 6 times so far this year. It’s a great evening for my wife and myself, and our 17- and 11-year-old sons absolutely love it. Last time we went we had dinner at the food trucks downstairs. It was a perfect combo.

- Casey T, Yelp review


A fantastic evening of unexpected fun.

- Jay S, Yelp review


BATS is a great old San Francisco institution which dispenses laughs by the bucketload. You are never quite too sure what you’re going to see.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


They can do drama. And they can do comedy. You’ll laugh till you cry.

- Austin M, Yelp review


I would recommend this spot to anyone as a fun way to kick off a good Friday or Saturday night.

- M L, Yelp review


If you’re looking for fun on the cheap, come to BATS, take the leap! The show kept us laughing the whole entire time, it was an awesome experience if you’re watching the dime.

- Khloe B, Yelp review


BATS Improv is a fantastic night out. It’s not stand-up, it’s live improvised theatre, with games like the Who’s Line is it Anyway? show and longer performances of different themes. The actors are unbelievably talented and funny, and the shows are a good value, ESPECIALLY when compared to other live theatre events. HIGHLY recommended.

- Snarfy, Trip Advisor review


Hilarious, inventive, surprising. Sometimes you even laugh so hard you cry.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


We had a GREAT time! – This was our third time seeing a show and we loved it. We’ll definitely be back. Their Main Stage performers are very talented and always make us laugh. If you like the show Whose Line is it Anyway? then I recommend you go see one of their Theatresports shows where two teams compete and there is a lot of audience interaction. They also have themed shows as well like improvised musicals; audience participation is big in some of those shows and not in others.

When your friends are visiting from out-of-town, bring them to a show. It’s a guaranteed good time! They have great classes too. I took an intro class here and met a fun group of people. I highly recommend BATS.

- Barkoman, Citysearch review


You will experience and enjoy a show the likes of which you have never seen before, or ever will again. Each performance is unique!

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


An evening of casual but serious fun served up on a spinning plate.

- Audience member (from anonymous survey)


“Bounce-in-your-seat funny”

- SF Chronicle

Paris Café (4:25)
Improvised live at BATS

 

shows-side-imageShows Every
Friday & Saturday

The BATS Main Stage Company performs every Friday and Saturday night at 8:00 in BATS’ Bayfront Theater at historic Fort Mason Center in San Francisco’s scenic Marina District. Shows change every month.

BATS News

Summer Sessions Celebrates Its 20th Anniversary

This year marks the 20th Anniversary of BATS School of Improv’s Summer Sessions. Students have come from all over the world to participate in these unique intensive classes.

Read more »