PROVO — BYUtv's "Studio C" cast performed its first live-stream taping Friday night for nearly 20,000 fans around the world and 200 in the studio, including the lieutenant governor of Utah and local YouTube stars.
Because the popularity of the sketch comedy group is growing, only 7 percent of fans who apply for tickets to see a live taping of the show get in. The cast live-streamed part of the June 19 taping so fans around the world could watch the sketches as they happened.
Viewers of the live stream were able to see the cast prepping backstage and watched as a crew of around 50 people worked on set. Online fans used the #studioclive hashtag to ask the cast members questions, which they answered between sketches. Three fans won Skype sessions with the cast, and another won airfare and tickets for two to the final taping of the sixth season in Provo.
Utah Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox attended Friday's taping with his wife and children. He said his two youngest children have seen every "Studio C" episode multiple times.
"It's one of those things we can always trust," Cox said. "We know if they're watching it, it's fine, and they're going to have a good time. It really proves that there is a market for good, clean, funny content. They don't skimp on the entertainment side either; it's legitimately funny. I love to watch it with my kids."
The "Studio C" YouTube channel has nearly 400,000 subscribers, and in under an hour, the live stream received 35,000 comments and was in the second spot for live-stream videos trending on YouTube.
Several famous YouTubers were in the studio Friday to show their support for family friendly content. Video blogger Jared Mecham of Ellie and Jared attended the event with his niece and nephew.
"It's just a nice family show," Mecham said. "YouTube is so great because you can have all of that. You don't really have to go through hoops and ladders because it's so readily available."
Steven Sharp Nelson of The Piano Guys attended the taping with his wife and two children.
"There's nothing like hearing your child giggle," Nelson said. "That's the best sound in the world. There's so many things on YouTube where you kind of have to put your hands over your children's eyes. There are so few things you can watch together as a family, so we really appreciate 'Studio C' for that."
"Studio C" began as a sketch comedy show on BYUtv in 2012 and is now filming its sixth season. The show films the 160 sketches that make up each season over a four-month period on select Friday nights. The cast of 10 films seven to eight sketches per live taping and does two live tapings each night.
Fans who missed the show Friday can watch a recording on YouTube.