FESTIVAL AFTER DARK Presents wits with host John Moe
A night of comedy, conversation, songs
and surprises.

Wits is a public radio show hosted by John Moe, featuring world-class comedians, actors and musicians. It mixes improv, sketch comedy, conversation and music into a program praised as “one of the rare public radio shows that’s actually funny” (Huffington Post) and “a wildly successful radio show” (City Pages, Minneapolis).

Watch our videos above to catch the highlights or listen to the full show here.

John Moe | HOST

Prior to hosting Wits, John served as host of Marketplace Tech Report and Weekend America, both national programs hears on public radio stations. His reporting and commentary has aired on All Things Considered, Marketplace, and numerous other public radio programs. John is a widely published author and his forthcoming book due out in June is “Dear Luke, We Need to Talk, Darth: And Other Pop Culture Correspondences.”


Margaret Cho could be called “Queen of all Media,” conquering film, television, books and theatre, with Grammy nominations, sold-out tours, and off-Broadway and TV shows under her belt. Equally as important are the causes she is passionate about. Margaret is widely-recognized for her charitable work with gay rights and anti-bullying campaigns.

Paul F. Tompkins | COMEDIAN, ACTOR

Paul F. Tompkins is one of the most charming, quick-witted and popular comedians on the scene. Tompkins has recorded four stand-up specials for “Comedy Central,” and hosts the “Speakeasy” web series. Tompkins is an Emmy-nominated writer for “Mr. Show with Bob and David,” and has appeared in movies including “There Will Be Blood” and “The Informant!” His most recent comedy albums include, “Freak Wharf” and “Laboring Under Delusions.”

Superchunk | PUNK ROCKERS

For 25 years, Superchunk has been a punk rock force with raw, infectious energy. The band’s latest album, I Hate Music, is full of “delicious noise and sugar-crusted hooks” (Rolling Stone) and it’s “crushing in its poignancy” (Spin). Drummer Jon Wurster has comedy chops as well, beloved for his work with Tom Sharpling on The Best Show on WFMU.


Will Sheff is the bandleader of Okkervil River, whose latest album is “The Silver Gymnasium.”  Called by Pitchfork as “one of indie rock’s most ambitious thinkers,” Sheff is adored for his smart lyrics and “sophisticated songwriting” (Paste Magazine). His arts criticism and fiction have been published in McSweeney’s, Magnet, and the Austin Chronicle, where he worked as a film critic. His liner notes for the Roky Erickson album True Love Cast Out All Evil, which he produced, were nominated for a Grammy, and he appeared in the 2012 film The Comedy.


Music director John Munson wrote, sang and played in ’90s cult favorite Trip Shakespeare as well as multi-platinum-selling hit-makers Semisonic. His current projects include founding and playing bass with jazzy revisionists The New Standards and his latest rock group, The Twilight Hours. He’s both funny and a snappy dresser.

The Witnesses | WITS HOUSE BAND

On vocals: Janey Winterbauer. A member of the dream-pop band Astronaut Wife, she has also lent her voice to Golden Smog, The Jayhawks, The New Standards, and many more. On vibes: Steve Roehm. Steve plays with The New Standards and The Twilight Hours as well as The Neighborhood Trio, and he teaches at MacPhail Center for Music. On drums: Richard Medek. Richard has appeared on rock tours (John Doe, Alternate Routes), Americana albums (Hacienda Brothers, Kelly Pardekooper), and ambient cacophony (Winthorp, with Teddy Morgan and Carl Broemel of My Morning Jacket). On pedal steel: Joe Savage. He’s recorded with Mike Doughty, The Jayhawks, Dan Wilson and more. Joe has a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Minnesota Rock/Country Hall of Fame, and he has two instrumental albums of his own.