Here is how I know I have been to a great comedy show? I walk through the door and pretty much race to my laptop to gush about it via blog. So here I am, incredibly inspired to gush!
Tonight I went to an event I have been highly anticipating – Obviously Improv Presents – The Improv Games: Catching Funds, featuring representation from just about all of Calgary’s improv groups. This was a great show for a first time improv audience member who wanted to get a taste of the variety of styles and talent the Calgary scene is so infinitely blessed with. Tonight was pretty much a night aimed to please my improv-loving, Hunger Game-obsessed brain, so I pretty much was amped about the show from the get-go. As you walked in the back alley of the Dancers’ Studio West entrance you were greeted by “tributes” from all the performing duos who pled you their case to give them coins that would help them win sponsorship advantages in the each scene battle. I was offered heartfelt pleas from newbies and hugs and sandwiches from the vets. Ultimately sandwiches won my votes… obviously! The house was so full there was a waiting list and people were turned away, so I was glad to have purchased my tickets the day before. The crowd seem to buzz with excitement and even though I arrived by myself, I made new friends in the audience and saw a lot people from classes in the crowd. Because each tribute team was bartering for votes the show had a really cool inclusive feel for the audience that other shows I have been to never have had. Before the show even started there was an excitement in the air. The show started off with a Cornocopia (eek!) of props for each team to use in their first scene to stay true to the Hunger Games theme. Then before each scene the audience would use their chips they got upon arrival or bought before the show to support the team of their choice to get an advantage for themselves or a disadvantage for the other team. This, alongside a lightning round, made the show very fast-paced and exciting for the audience. It was really interesting seeing long form improvisers work within the short form show and while they did not fare as well as the short formers, they got to showcase their brand of comedy to a new audience of people. And that right there was the beauty of this glorious show.
This show was not just about fundraising for the newly formed Obviously Improv. This show was about celebrating and showcasing Calgary’s improv community to loyal and new fans. It was inspiring to see the comradery amongst the community of improvisers performing in the show and overall the whole experience was so joyful to watch. I hope this becomes an annual event and that all the theatres in the city embrace it and come on board, if for anything the sake of the improv fanatics out there like me!
It was such a fun night and I am really excited about the variety of comedy entertainment that is happening all over Calgary. This week alone there are a ton of great shows being put on by Kaboom Hooray, Kinkonauts, Mix Tape and Loose Moose. So go forth and try some delicious comedy my friends!