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Comedy Improv in Knoxville, TN

Performing every Tuesday at 8:15 pm
at Scruffy City Hall (32 Market Square)

Paul Simmons


Einstein Simplified has been entertaining Knoxville, TN and the surrounding area since 1994. That is over 24 years and 1250 plus shows of comedy improv. The troupe is currently performing at 8:15 p.m. every Tuesday at Scruffy City Hall.

We offer entertainment at events/festivals and workshops teaching improvisational skills to your employees, staff, or interested parties. For more information, contact Paul Simmons at or 865-898-6448.

The troupe has recently been nominated for a 2012 INNY Award for Best Short Form improv comedy. Other awards include winning Best Theatre Group in the WTNZ Fox 43 Hot List, Runner Up Best Local Theatre Group MetroPulse Best Of (2011-2013), and ranking first place in the Improvisation Top 50 for the last five years before it closed.

The group often performs outside of their regular weekly show. Recent appearances include the Scruffy City Comedy Festival, Gatlinburg Improv Fest, Knoxville's First Night New Year's celebration (2008-2012), halftime performance with the Hard Knox Roller Girls and the Relay for Life Knoxville among others.



In the summer of 1994 twelve wannabe comedians took a course in improvisation based on the Improv Olympics and Second City teachings. Ten managed to survive the rigorous eight weeks and joined forces to burst upon the Knoxville, TN comedy scene as "Einstein Simplified". Starting out by opening for an open mic night they were allowed fifteen minutes and maybe they would be asked back. Seconds after stepping off stage they were invited back and given thirty minutes. After the next week they were given one full hour and opened for every open mic. After the club switched ownership they negotiated with the new owners for their own night and two hours. Which is how it has been ever since, even with temporary switches to other venues such as: Patrick Sullivan's, Amigo's, back to Manhattan's, back to Patrick Sullivan's, The Square Room, Side Splitters, The Well, and even the street corner (which is now a business) in The Old City. They are now at Scruffy City Hall every week ever amusing and ever vigilant. Only one of the original ten members is still with the group; with the groups current accounting at seven.

Originally the group performed long form improv Chicago style with "The Harold". This was initially well received, and then required adjustment as they had longer shows and needed to keep the audience engrossed. They began to do more short form with the occasional "Harold" and then after several months, dropped the "Harold" completely. Since then they have been a short form group. They can select from over one hundred different improvisational games and even offer up the challenging Give Us a Game Title game where the audience will give them a game title and they will provide the rules and play a round of the new game.

The group has held a wide variety of personality types over the years: students, a writer, performers, lawyers, a computer scientist, a CPA, a salesman, a photographer, waiters and waitresses, an ad executive, a real estate agent, and even a mascot. Even more diverse is the age span of the group. The greatest age difference at one time was 32 years. The math is left as an exercise for the reader.

Copyright 2018 Einstein Simplified
Photos, unless otherwise specified are copyright Cinnamon Studios