Some of Cold Tofu's core members.

Cold Tofu Improv will kick off 2012 with a series of shows. The schedule is as follows:

* Saturday, Jan. 21, at 8 and 10 p.m.

Company of Angels at the Alexandria Hotel

501 S. Spring St., 3rd floor, Los Angeles

Two shows in support of CoA’s upcoming production of “Wind Chimes”

Admission:  $5 per show

Reservations: For information only, call (310) 463-1643

* Saturday, Jan. 28, at 7 p.m.

Gardena Valley JCI Nisei Veterans Hall

1964 W. 162nd St., Gardena (between Western and Van Ness)

Admission: $10

For information, call (310) 324-6611 or email

* Saturday, Feb. 18, at 7:30 p.m.

Maryknoll Japanese Catholic Center Auditorium

222 S. Hewitt St., Los Angeles (east of Alameda, between 2nd and 3rd streets)

Cold Tofu’s first improv show of 2012. The monthly shows are filled with hilarious short-form improv games using suggestions from the audience.

Admission: $5

Free parking available on the property and on Hewitt Street

For more information, email or call (213) 739-4142

Reservations are not necessary

About Cold Tofu

Cold Tofu is the nation’s premier Asian American comedy improv and sketch group. It is dedicated to promoting diverse images of Asian Pacific Americans through comedy and to developing multiethnic talent through education and performance.

A nonprofit organization, Cold Tofu was founded in 1981 by Marilyn Tokuda, Denice Kumagai, Judy Momii and Irma Escamilla. At that time, the four founding members wanted to perform comedy encompassing a variety of universal themes that people from many communities could relate to. They also wanted to provide an opportunity for Asian American actors to perform and explore comedy.

Stocked with six-packs and chips, the core group met regularly at each other’s homes exploring new territory – Asian American comedy. They were willing to try anything, and as a result, Cold Tofu began to take shape as an improv and sketch group.

Since then, Cold Tofu’s members have created unforgettable characters, sketch materials and improvised scenes. In addition to performing all over Southern California, the group has performed throughout the nation in cities like San Jose, Seattle, Houston, New York and Washington, D.C. (at the Smithsonian Institution). Cold Tofu has also performed and taught workshops at several campuses such as USC, UCLA, UC Santa Barbara, UC Riverside, Pomona College and the University of Washington.

Under the leadership of Artistic Director Helen H. Ota and the core cast members, Cold Tofu continues to grow and develop its style of comedy. It has grown close to 30 members who perform improv shows regularly in historic Little Tokyo, as well as at various events for community organizations, colleges, and museums throughout the nation. Providing workshops throughout the year, Cold Tofu shares the thrill of performing improv and sketch, while training up-and-coming performers.

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