2009 Nominees Announced, Voting Opens

In an crowded early-morning press conference today at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel in downtown Los Angeles, Del Close Awards committee member Phillip Wilburn was joined by Red Carpet Correspondent Judith Shelton to announce the nominees for the 2008 iOWest Del Close Awards.

Named for Del Close, improv pioneer and co-founder of the iO Chicago theater, the Annual iOWest Del Close Awards are given out for achievements – both valid and dubious – in the field of comedic improvisation at an irreverent ceremony at the iOWest theater.

Once again, this year’s ballot features a mix of familiar faces and new blood. Perennial Best Harold Team nominees Trophy Wife and Local 132 are joined by newcomers The Cartel. 2008 Sexiest Player winner Nick Armstrong returns to face competition from good-looking peers including Rikki Kalil and Aretmis Pebdani, while new category Best ADT Team boasts a lineup of impressive talent such as Steve Holt and Kitty Porn.

Once again, veteran Craig Cackowski received the most nominations this year with nods in two categories – Coach of the Year and Teacher of the Year – in addition to a pair of show nominations: Dasariski for Best Improvised Non Harold and Dasariski presents Loose Fish for Best Scripted Show.

iOWest students and alumni can cast their ballots online at delcloseawards.com starting today through August 16th. Winners will be announced at a live ceremony August 21st at 9pm at the iOWest theater in Los Angeles. Drinks and dancing to follow.