Stand-up comedian Quincy Jones, improv duo “Sheldon” to headline third annual Pittsburgh Comedy Festival

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Jones' one-hour HBO special to premiere Thursday, June 2 at 10 pm

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Comedy Arts Pittsburgh (CAP) is excited to announce that stand-up comedian Quincy Jones and improv duo “Sheldon” will headline the third annual Pittsburgh Comedy Festival (PCF). PCF is a weekend-long showcase of stand-up and improv comedy acts from Pittsburgh and beyond and will be held August 25-28 at the Henry Heymann Theatre in the heart of the University of Pittsburgh’s Oakland campus

Jones, whose first HBO stand-up special airs at 10 p.m. EST on Thursday, June 2–and will later appear on Netflix–was diagnosed with Stage 4 mesothelioma, a rare form of cancer, in July 2015. Since then, he has appeared on The Ellen Degeneres Show to tell his story and continues to perform despite ongoing chemotherapy. His Kickstarter-funded HBO special is titled “Burning the Light,” based a common phrase used when a comedian’s set is going over its allotted time–and one that Jones has taken to heart since his diagnosis.

“Sheldon,” a long-form improv duo comprised of Chicago comedy mainstays Rob Belushi and Jon Barinholtz, is known for its captivating, high energy shows centered around relatable characters. Sheldon has headlined the Chicago Improv Festival three times and performed at iO Chicago, Crossroads, the Detroit Improv Festival, the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival and the Atlanta Improv Festival. Barinholtz and Belushi both share a familial pedigree in comedy, but have each developed their own unique comedic style. Barinholtz has appeared on NBC’s Parks and Recreation and is the younger brother of fellow actor and comedian Ike Barinholtz of The Mindy Project. Belushi has appeared on CBS’s How I Met Your Mother, performed with the Second City touring company and is the son of fellow actor and comedian Jim Belushi and nephew of late Saturday Night Live cast member John Belushi.

“We couldn’t be more excited about this year’s festival headliners,” says PCF 2016 Programming Director, Nilesh Shah. “Jones’ story and comedy are a great fit for the intimate, community environment that PCF has become known for. Our improv headliner, Sheldon, epitomizes the spontaneous fun and real relationships that have helped our local comedy community grow so much over the past few years. We’re proud to bring two fantastic, hilarious and very different national comedy acts to our stage in August. Audiences will be in for a treat.”

Jones and Sheldon will both headline two primetime shows during the three-day festival, with each show featuring a full lineup of both local and national stand-up and improv comedy acts. As part of a day-long selection of comedy workshops for both experienced improvisers and general audiences, Barinholtz and Belushi will teach skills-based improv comedy workshops designed to help individuals with some improv experience hone their craft and be more compelling on stage.

Founded in 2014, PCF is organized and run by Comedy Arts Pittsburgh (CAP)–an arts organization founded to elevate the profile of comedy as a performing art in Pittsburgh and to raise Pittsburgh’s profile nationally. Using comedy as a universal language, CAP partners with artists, public and private organizations to promote comedy and the life skills it imparts.

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Ben Korman
PR Manager
Pittsburgh Comedy Festival
(917) 650-9179

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Ben Korman
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