Posts Tagged ‘magnet’

Thursday February 8, 2018, 10:00am - by Promo Team

Welcome to Magnet’s “Getting To Know” series! We’re using our blog to highlight our fabulous performers and writers and we can’t wait for you to meet them. Want to see them all? Click here.

What’s your name?

Marie Denny.

Which team or show are you on?

SNACKS!

Where are you from?

I was born and raised in London, England, then Chicago, IL.

How did you get into improv/sketch comedy?

I moved to New York 8 years ago as a dramatic actor associating improv with comedy-which felt out of my league. After a few years here I decided to take an improv class to book more commercial auditions so I could be somewhat poor instead of all the way poor. I didn’t really know what long form improv was before that but I was hooked immediately. Sketch felt like a natural progression a few years after that.

How long have you been performing/writing?

Since high school but it wasn’t something I thought I would do with my life until after college.

Who in all the world would be your ideal scene or writing partner?

Michaela Coel. Chewing Gum was one of the most brilliant, weird, authentic and original shows I’ve seen in awhile.

Who would you most like to impersonate or write for?

I’d love to write for Robin Thede on The Rundown. The show has a voice and perspective you won’t find anywhere else in late night and she brings a fun energy to our current, nightmarish news cycle.

What makes you laugh the hardest?

Silly wordplay and inventive physical comedy.

Describe the soundtrack to your life!

Well I’m a big old 80’s baby so it would start with some manic 80’s pop and then move into some smooth 90’s RnB. Throw in some Snoop and Riri for good measure.

What’s something you’d ask when meeting someone for the first time?

“How’s it going?” Practicality won out.

Where can we find you on a Saturday night?

Probably slinging drinks in a bar dreaming of one day being an old, eccentric hermit.

Would you ever consider keeping a rodent as a pet?

Only if it could do useful stuff like bring me the remote and make my bed. That would actually be pretty dope, I might be into that.

 

Thursday February 1, 2018, 10:00am - by Promo Team

Welcome to Magnet’s “Getting To Know” series! We’re using our blog to highlight our fabulous performers and writers and we can’t wait for you to meet them. Want to see them all? Click here.

What’s your name?

Brian Rodriguez.

Which team or show are you on?

I’m on the musical improv team Honeymoon, part of Musical Megawatt.

Where are you from?

The Dirtiest Parts of Jersey, NJ.

How did you get into improv/sketch comedy?

I started doing competitive solo improv on my high school forensics team when I was a freshman and loved having it as an outlet for creating characters and following patterns and calling back to earlier beats.

How long have you been performing/writing?

I played Touchstone in an 8th grade production of As You Like It, and have mostly felt trapped performing that role ever since.

I’m sorry, that answer is a little too pretentious! What about: I started playing the trombone and performing in the 4th grade, mostly because I could make it look like I was jerking the instrument off? Is that better?!

Who in all the world would be your ideal scene or writing partner?

I just want to be in a scene with Beth Slack again. That would be ideal.

Who would you most like to impersonate or write for?

Neither of those things interest me, but I would most like for more Magnet talent (not me) to write for more Magnet Podcasts ???? There is just such amazing talent here that I wish I could carry around on my phone and listen to.

What makes you laugh the hardest?

That thing when babies are scared by their own farts. It’s such a raw visceral reaction.

Describe the soundtrack to your life!

Lots of Math Rock, Chillhop, and anything Sufjan Stevens does.

What’s something you’d ask when meeting someone for the first time?

I’d ask them not to make eye contact.

Where can we find you on a Saturday night?

At home, watching everyone else’s night out on snapchat.

If you could only wear one color for the rest of your life, what would it be? (You can wear different shades of the same color.)

 I’m so stressed out by this question, I may never leave the house again. Gray?

Thursday January 25, 2018, 10:00am - by Promo Team

Welcome to Magnet’s “Getting To Know” series! We’re using our blog to highlight our fabulous performers and writers and we can’t wait for you to meet them. Want to see them all? Click here.

What’s your name?

Ellen Matthews.

Which team or show are you on?

She Wolf (Megawatt).

Where are you from?

Western Massachusetts.

How did you get into improv/sketch comedy?

I always took advantage of school projects where I had the option to perform a “skit” or “video” as my presentation. When I went to college, I wanted to continue to be creative, but I really did not want to do improv. I didn’t think I could think that quickly on my feet. I eventually discovered a sketch comedy troupe (Sketch 22 at UMass Amherst) which was perfect for me. After college, I moved to New York and took a sketch writing class at UCB, but I found that I couldn’t keep up with the time-consuming writing while maintaining my full time job. Knowing that I needed to continue to create and collaborate in some way, my friend convinced me to take an improv class at UCB which was being taught by Shannon O’Neill. From then on, I started to fall in love with improv. I had always been a writer and performer, and I loved how improv let me do both at the same time, in a collaborative way. When I discovered Magnet Theater in 2016, I felt for the first time the most comfortable I had ever felt doing improv. The teachers, the community, and the open-minded curriculum and style made me feel very much at home.

How long have you been performing/writing?

Always.

Who in all the world would be your ideal scene or writing partner?

Writing partner: My friend Danielle Soto. We were writing partners in college. She is now a standup comedian in LA – check her out! A great writing partner sparks ideas from you that you would never have on your own, and makes you laugh A LOT. Scene partner: Anyone who is committed. The worst feeling in improv isn’t not getting laughs, it having your partner bail on you. I still to this day remember people who have bailed on me simply in class scenes, not even at a show, and I still can’t let it go…That’s why we always must remind each other: “Got your back!”

Who would you most like to impersonate or write for?

I would love to impersonate Kate McKinnon, she’s very expressive when she acts or even talks in an interview, which I can relate to. I remember an audience member coming up to me after a show and saying “you have awesome facial expressions!”, which I took as a huge compliment.

What makes you laugh the hardest?

Being silly and physical comedy. Don’t get me wrong – I respect clever, satirical, pointed comedy, but I could watch something like The Daily Show without ever laughing out loud. It doesn’t mean I don’t find the material funny, I do! It’s just that I can control my laughter. However, if someone farts in a meeting, I will not be able to control my laughter… If someone slips and makes a funny cry noise, I will not be able to control my laughter… One time at She Wolf practice, our coach Rick Andrews dropped his glasses off his face. He tried to catch them several times in the air, before they took the longest fall to the ground. I had to curl up in my chair because my stomach hurt so bad from laughing at this truly beautiful and genuine moment. I think I laugh hardest when the person is being real, and is actually not trying to be funny.

Describe the soundtrack to your life!

Lilith Fair.

What’s something you’d ask when meeting someone for the first time?

I’m always curious to know what TV shows people like to watch. I find that it can tell me a lot about their personality.

Where can we find you on a Saturday night?

Out to dinner, but back in time to watch Saturday Night Live.

What’s your spirit toothbrush and/or paste?

My spirit toothbrush is a Sonicare because it’s gentle and soothing on my gums. My dentists yells at me for brushing too hard and hurting my gums. Thank you Sonicare!

Thursday January 18, 2018, 10:00am - by Promo Team

Welcome to Magnet’s “Getting To Know” series! We’re using our blog to highlight our fabulous performers and writers and we can’t wait for you to meet them. Want to see them all? Click here.

What’s your name?

Justin Morgan.

Which team or show are you on?

The Nitro Girls.

Where are you from?

Snellville, GA (suburb of Atlanta).

How did you get into improv/sketch comedy?

Was asked to join a theater sports team in High School at a drama club party. I then went through training at Dad’s Garage in Atlanta very quickly afterward.

How long have you been performing/writing?

Since high school really. There was a gap of about a decade though where there was just occasional daydreaming about comedy. Then, I tried my hand at stand-up almost ten years ago. Standup led to hosting. Hosting led to storytelling. Storytelling led to sketch. So…a long time.

Who in all the world would be your ideal scene or writing partner?

Someone who blows me away with how funny and talented they are. But also someone who will knock around jokes and bits with me for hours. They should be wide open for collaboration, but resolute in what they personally find funny. (If you are looking for actual people … I think Devin O’Neil, Michael Delisle and Pat May are remarkably funny.)

Who would you most like to impersonate or write for?

Broad question. It would be awesome to write some sort of lunacy for Jason Mantzoukas to perform. Impression? Someone with a very distinct voice … Maybe a Jeff Goldblum, John Lithgow or Sam Rockwell.

What makes you laugh the hardest?

Jokes that bomb. I love hearing risky things get met with uncomfortable silences or “Oooooohs.” That tends to make me laugh the hardest. That and my very weird wife.

Describe the soundtrack to your life!

I really like radio mixes by Chances With Wolves right now. It’s like 50’s & 60’s rock and soul music covers from all over the world. Radiohead, Talking Heads, 60’s & 70’s soul music.

What’s something you’d ask when meeting someone for the first time?

“What can I get you to drink?”

Where can we find you on a Saturday night?

Most likely the movies. I enjoy movies.

If a wicked witch turned you into a pair of shoes, what kind of shoes would you be?

A shoe that I would argue is nice enough, yet still comfortable enough, to be considered a dress sneaker.

Tuesday January 16, 2018, 10:05am - by Promo Team

William Shakespeare once wrote that “a quart of ale is a dish for a king.” Few could agree with him more than Hayley Karl and Ally Gold, the creators of BEER, PERIOD, and the show’s director, Christopher Hastings. BEER, PERIOD is Magnet’s brand new show dedicated to the world’s greatest beverage. We spoke with Hayley, Ally, and Chris about the intense love of beer fueling their upcoming show on January 19th!

 Is there an objectively agreed upon best beer? If so, what is it?

CHRIS: There was only one objectively agreed upon best beer, and it was called “Whatever Beer I Can Thank God I Have Been Able To Find And Put In My Mouth” and it was the entire United States’s favorite beer from 1920 to 1933. In the years since, the country has re-divided it’s opinion on the subject.

HAYLEY: I mean, PLINY THE ELDER (Obviously, obviously) is the greatest beer of all time. I’ve never had one, but hopefully will before I die which hopefully means I have plenty of time. Anyways, right now, without question the best beer is LITERALLY ANYTHING by Other Half Brewery. It is the nectar of the gods and I quiver in it’s presence.

ALLY: Any beautiful beer liquid gently floating down my throat hole, is at that moment in time and space, the best beer. HOWEVER, if you want a name, Heady Topper is at the top of all the charts right now. And charts don’t lie.

HAYLEY: Ally is WRONG but we are in therapy working through it.

Can someone who doesn’t like beer still enjoy your show?

CHRIS: I mean there’s still chairs that people can sit in during the show. Everyone likes to sit down a spell.

HAYLEY: Deep down, everyone loves beer, and I hope that this show brings that truth to light for all. So, yes…

ALLY: Wait… have they just never tried beer? If not, then they will DEF have fun. Lives are about to change.

What’s the one thing someone should never, ever say to a beer enthusiast?

CHRIS: “Oh you like beer? That reminds me, I made a nice beer braised sausage dish the other day. What was the beer I used? Oh yeah! It was called Heady Topper. I didn’t actually need that much to cook with though. Gave the rest to the dog. He loved it.”

HAYLEY: “Have you had Pliney the Elder yet?” Like, don’t remind me, you know?

ALLY: “Wake up. I’ve sewn your mouth shut.”

Why is beer such a big part of the comedy scene?

CHRIS: Trying to be funny for a crowd is terrifying, and alcohol melts fear. Only melt fear in moderation, everyone.

HAYLEY: The best beer pairing is with laughter.

ALLY: Beer is a big part of everything; comedians just know how to utilize its power.

Who drinks more, comedians or comic book artists?

CHRIS: Comedians LOVE beer and so do cartoonists, but I think the difference is that cartoonists will drink ANYTHING.

HAYLEY: I am gonna default to Chris on this one.

ALLY: Can’t beat that Chris answer.


Raise your glass to BEER, PERIOD Friday January 19th at Magnet

Tuesday January 9, 2018, 11:00am - by Promo Team

Looking for a fun, female-focused show inspired by the backup dancers from a popular 90’s sketch comedy show? Lucky you– Fly Gurlz hits the Magnet stage Friday January 12th! We knew you’d be thirsty for more details, so we spoke with the show’s creators Meredith Paul, Nanie Méndez, and Lida Darmian to learn more.

What was the inspiration for Fly Gurlz?

Fly Gurlz began when we all competed in a character competition called Face Off. We had an all-female team. We wanted a space to lift up women’s voices- particularly women writers, so we created Fly Gurlz to be that space. Our intention is an inclusive, party vibe that, hopefully, creates an atmosphere where women feel safe to embrace the weirdest parts of themselves and strengthen their voices.

How has the show changed since it started last year?

We have had the same format since pretty much the beginning. One amazing addition (brain child of Fly Gurl Nanie Mendez) was our semi-annual Fly Gurlz Sketch Fest. We accept open submission for female sketch writers and female performers, and create an all new sketch show written for women, by women. This has been an extremely fun and enriching experience! You can check out our next one 1/12, 11:30pm at the MAGNET!!! YA HEARD OF IT???? (Plug)

How do you choose performers to highlight in this variety show?

We choose women of all types who write and create their own material. We love weird shit especially. (Can I curse in this? if no please change shit to ‘lil foodle doodles’)

What are some of your favorite moments from previous Fly Gurlz shows?

This is so hard to say because we’ve been doing our show over a year and there have been so many amazing moments. Right after the election, Nanie, Lida and I improvised together as Michelle Obama, Melania Trump and Hilary Clinton which was a cathartic and weird and emotional set! We did an all musical show in support of Puerto Rico (Nanie’s home!) and raised over $1,000. Probably my personal favorite moment (again this is Meredith Isabel Paul) was when my mom came to the show and said it was “ok”. (huge)

Your poster is inspired by the iconic “jazz” solo cup design from the ’90s. What’s your favorite piece of ’90s nostalgia?

Meredith:I LOVE POLLY POCKET!!!!!!!!! I follow multiple instagram accounts that feature old salvaged Polly Pockets. I think I always thought I’d end up living inside a Polly Pocket but instead I live in Midtown Manhattan.
Lida: My favorite is Pound Puppies because I wasn’t allowed to have pets.
Nanie: My Tiger Beat posters of my top two heart throbs– Johnathan Brandis (RIP), star of Ladybugs and Sidekicks & Andrew Keegan who now runs his own church.

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Make sure to catch Fly Gurlz: Sketch Fest this Friday at 11:30 pm. It’s gonna be a riot.

Tuesday January 2, 2018, 1:24pm - by Magnet Theater

How many of your friends are tarot readers, yogis, witches and sexually active humans? Oh, all of them? Great! So is Alessandra Calderin, creator and host of the new show Sex Magic :: A Taboo Busting, Sex Positive, Magic Making Event. On Sunday, January 7th (6 pm), she’s assembling a delicious lineup of performers to put on a taboo busting, sex positive and magic making event featuring true stories, confessions, education, burlesque and even a spell or two. We talk to Alessandra about sex, magic, and putting together the show!

What’s the inspiration for your show Sex Magic?

We all love sex, but we seem to have a hard time with it. As a sexually obsessed AND repressed society, there are all these conflicting messages about what’s acceptable coming from what feels like a million different directions. I could literally go on for days about how the complexity of all this messes us up, but suffice it to say, it feels very unsexy, unfun and at worst, dangerous.
This manifests itself in every community in its own ways, including ours, whether it’s a creepy scene partner, or a fear of ever broaching the subject both on and off stage.
Sex magic itself is the practice of using the energy of sexuality and orgasm to set intentions and manifest desires and goals, and so this show is my manifestation of a free fun and safe space to talk about sex!

 

How did you assemble the team of amazing performers featured in this show?

I’m very lucky to have amazing friends and fellow performers who say yes to me. It was a lot of texting and Facebook messages just saying “hey do you want to talk about sex on stage with me?” And some folks were just like yeah just tell me what you want me to do. Other folks, like the lovely Chris de la Cruz, had their own amazing ideas to add to the show. So, in short, luck and friendship.

 

What is Boneseed and how did you create it?

Boneseed is my moniker for the work I do with tarot, yoga and intuitive healing. I quit my corporate job about a year ago and have been building my private practice ever since. Actually, my first public workshop was called Creating Sex Magic and was a yoga and writing workshop that focused on the Sacral Chakra, which is the area around the pelvis where we store our creative and sexual energy. It’s kind of my favorite part of the body and sexual exploration and freedom is where I’m really able to offer a lot of ideas and insight since I’ve studied the pelvic floor and cycled through my own range of issues with regards to both physical and emotional blockages down there.
You can learn more about Boneseed and what I do at www.boneseed.co.

 

What’s the best way to build space for sex positivity in the improv community?

Literally just talking about it in a real way. I feel like sex in scenes can get awkward because people feel forced to do things they don’t want to do, but the beauty of improv is that you get to make shit up. You don’t have to rub yourself against your scene partner. Maybe sex in this world is rubbing elbows like in Rocky Horror Picture Show.
There’s also a hypersensitivity right now, which is not unwarranted. People have real reasons for fearing abuse in our culture and society, but sometimes we jump to conclusions during teachable moments, or turn people into villains without considering how to reintegrate offenders. I’m talking about the world at large here, but it all applies. The tricky thing is I’m on both sides. I want people to feel protected, but I also LOVE to flirt and exchange that dynamic energy with people. It’s the most fun, but it’s also gotten me into situations that I haven’t wanted to be in. For me, this journey has been about no longer blaming myself for situations I couldn’t control, but simultaneously taking responsibility and, in turn, reclaiming my own power.
And this journey is constant, right? I think we just need to be able to make mistakes as long as we’re not hurting anyone. I think we need to be honest with each other. Ask questions. Choose curiosity over judgement. All easier said and done, especially when it comes to sex since we all have hitched a lot of baggage to that wagon. (And if you’re reading this and thinking, “I don’t have any baggage around sex,” I bet you have extra baggage that you don’t even see.)

 

If you had to choose between sex and magic for the rest of your life, what would you choose?

Impossible. Sex is magic. Magic is sex. If I can have sex, I’m making magic. If I can practice magic, there’s alchemical and sexual energy in motion. It’s all life force. It’s all the sparks that connect us and keep us reaching for one another. It’s what we write and draw and create for. It is what we are.

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Make sure you don’t miss Sex Magic :: A Taboo Busting, Sex Positive, Magic Making Event this Sunday, 1/7, at 6 pm. Your pelvic floor will thank you!

Thursday December 28, 2017, 10:00am - by Promo Team

Welcome to Magnet’s “Getting To Know” series! We’re using our blog to highlight our fabulous performers and writers and we can’t wait for you to meet them. Want to see them all? Click here.

What’s your name?

Hi, my name is Amanda. “Bless my soul!”

Which team or show are you on?

Drama. We’re new to Megawatt. “Herc was on a roll!”

Where are you from?

Middletown, New Jersey. “Person of the week in every Greek opinion poll!”

How did you get into improv/sketch comedy?

By accident. I thought I submitted for a paying gig and I wound up in an improv class. “What a pro!”

How long have you been performing/writing?

As a child, I lied a lot. My mom put me in theater classes as an outlet for my persuasive imagination. “Herc’ could stop a show!”

Who in all the world would be your ideal scene or writing partner?

Samantha Bee. “Point him at a monster and you’re talking SRO!”

What makes you laugh the hardest?

People who are good at losing. “He was a no one, a zero, zero!”

Describe the soundtrack to your life!

“Now he’s a honcho
He’s a hero
He was a kid with his act down pat
From zero to hero in no time flat
Zero to hero just like that
When he smiled
The girls went wild with
Ooh’s and ah’s
And they slapped his face
On every vase
(On every ‘vahse’)
From appearance fees and royalties
Our Herc had cash to burn
Now nouveau riche and famous
He could tell you
What’s a Grecian urn?
Say amen
There he goes again
Sweet and undefeated
And an awesome ten for ten
Folks lined up
Just to watch him flex
And this perfect package
Packed a pair of pretty pecs
Hercie, he comes
He sees, he conquers
Honey, the crowds were
Going bonkers
He showed the moxie, brains, and spunk
From zero to hero a major hunk
Zero to hero and who’da thunk
Who put the glad in gladiator?
Hercules!
Whose daring deeds are great theater?
Hercules
Isn’t he bold?
No one braver
Is he sweet
Our favorite flavor
Hercules, Hercules (my man)
Hercules, Hercules
Hercules, Hercules
Bless my soul
Herc’ was on a roll
Undefeated
Riding high
And the nicest guy
Not conceited
He was a nothin’
A zero, zero
Now he’s a honcho
He’s a hero
He hit the heights at breakneck speed
From zero to hero
Herc is a hero!”

What’s something you’d ask when meeting someone for the first time?

Where are you from? “Now he’s a herooooo!”

Where can we find you on a Saturday night?

Transcribing the lyrics to Hercules. “Yes indeed!”

What’s your favorite movie quote?

“Indifference is the most awful thing in the world, Armand,” and the rest of The Birdcage.

Tuesday December 19, 2017, 11:00am - by Magnet Theater

Tired of seeing fat guys relegated to sidekicks and punchlines? Tom Sanchez is too. That’s why he wrote the action and music packed solo show Fat Friend, coming to the Magnet stage on December 29th. Here’s our conversation with Tom about Fat Friend, his sketch team Just Karen, and the magic of singing cops.

How did you get involved with Magnet?

I had heard of the Magnet through some friends who had taken classes there, so after a particularly rough class at UCB, I signed up for my Level 1 Class at the Magnet and never looked back!

What’s the inspiration behind your show Fat Friend?

I was tired of always going in to audition to play the fat sidekick in shows, commercials, etc, so I decided to write a show where the fat guy finally gets to be the hero, and not a punchline. Also I wanted to be able to do a dance, talk in an Australian accent, and eat pizza on stage and the only way that would ever happen was if I wrote myself that show!

Fat Friend involves the cast of the fictional sitcom “Totes in Love.” What’s your favorite bad sitcom?

This isn’t technically a sitcom, but the show “Cop Rock” is a very bad show from 1990 that I love. It’s a police procedural musical, in which these gritty cops break into song during the episodes. It’s basically Law and Order meets Glee, and everyone should look up the song “Let’s be Careful Out There” on Youtube immediately.

How has the show changed since it went up at the theater earlier this year?

It’s about 15 minutes shorter, first of all, and I’ve added more jokes, so hopefully it packs more of a punch, and is tighter, overall. Also, I’m updating the dances, and yes, there are 2 dance numbers in the 30 minute show!

How is your process different in a solo show than creating with your sketch team Just Karen?

Just Karen is great because we have this great team of writers who write these great sketches for you, and a great team of performers who are all very talented, so the whole process so much more fun and collaborative. The solo show is more difficult because its just me in the room, so there’s no one to bounce ideas off of, but I get to create and do whatever I want to do in the show, which is its own kind of fun!

What do you like better– sketch or improv? (You have to choose!)

Ok, let me just say that I love my sketch team VERY much and I think they are all VERY talented, but I gotta go with improv! There are no lines to learn, no costumes to bring, no props to worry about, so you just get to be weird and wild!

What’s your all time favorite Bonnie Tyler song and why?

Even though its (spoiler alert) NOT in the show, I’m going with the classic, “Total Eclipse of the Heart.” The music video is incredible and the song is so mysterious. Who is Bright Eyes and why won’t they turn around?

Tuesday November 28, 2017, 2:52pm - by Magnet Theater

A new Megawatt season began last month and, with it, a new Megawatt Director in Hannah Chase! Hannah has been an instructor and performer at Magnet for years now and, in addition to directing The Cast, performs every Thursday with The Music Industry.  We sat down with her to talk about her vision for Megawatt and to shed some light on the woman behind the curtain!

What are a few things you’re excited about for this upcoming Megawatt season?

I think Megawatt is in a really exciting place right now. We’ve got three new awesome teams and three existing teams that got new members. Even for the two teams without anyone new, the excitement of having fresh teams and players as part of the night definitely brings new energy to everyone on Megawatt.

What have you learned from the past Directors that you plan to carry with you to the future of Megawatt?

Oh man, I can’t say enough good things about Louis and Nick (the two previous Megawatt Directors I’ve had the pleasure of working with). Both of them brought such commitment, creativity, and warmth to the job (and to the night in general) that I can only hope to continue. To get specific, I am in constant awe of Louis’s thematic and philosophical eye when it comes to improv, and I deeply admire how much he pushed teams to be thoughtful about the overall presentation of their shows. Under Louis’s guidance, it didn’t just feel like we were doing improv, it felt like we were creating art that actually meant something. As for Nick, I continually marvel at his ability to inspire improvisors to genuinely play with each other. Megawatt can be a stressful place sometimes (unfortunately) and Nick did an A+ job at getting teams to gel, to support each other, and to truly play. These are some big shoes to fill, but I’m trying my best and will continue to!

Is there anything new that you’re hoping to bring to Megawatt?

I don’t think I can really claim this as “new,” but one thing I felt (and continue to feel) excited about is the idea of creating teams with a very specific style/vibe (or even a specific form) in mind. I’ve seen and been on lots of teams that felt like a perfect balancing act of improv styles and skills: a few big aggressive silly players, a few grounding and “actorly” players, a few folks with a sharp eye for pattern, and one or two improvisors who consistently use a wider lens to look at the whole piece in order to tie things together or enter toward the end with a walk on that is so perfect it feels scripted. The right balance of players on a team can create something truly great, and we’ve seen time and again that this works.

I’d heard it said before that it was inadvisable to create a team of players who all played similarly, and this always confused me. I can see that you wouldn’t necessarily want to make a team with eight players who all have the same limitations, but I think a team of eight like-minded (or like-styled) talented improvisors sounds genuinely thrilling. After all, the way we describe Megawatt to current and prospective students is a night in which you can spend four hours seeing eight completely different teams that represent a wide variety of improv and comedy styles. So…I wanted to double down on that! Long story [not so] short, each new team is made up of players with similar skillsets and the ability to play and [hopefully] have fun in a very specific style. Not to say that each team doesn’t have stylistic differences among the players, but we tried to match people who we thought would bring similar strengths, gel stylistically, and challenge each other to further hone those skills!

Who are the new Megawatt ensembles and what can we expect from them?

If you haven’t had a chance to see the three new Megawatt teams, You Are Missing Out. Here’s a little info about each one:

She Wolf was created to do organic improv, and they have taken to it like gangbusters. This is an exceptionally collaborative, playful, attentive team of improvisers. And they’ve been adding one organic skill/muscle/device each week, so the team is constantly evolving. If you saw them a few weeks ago, seeing them again will be a totally different experience. They’re doing weird stuff, in the absolute best sense of that word. Highly recommend!

Drama is the first Megawatt team in a long while to do an expansion. These eight improvisors are top notch actors who all excel at creating complicated, honest, unique characters that will somehow make you both laugh and care! In each show, they weave a web of lovable weirdos (in the absolute best sense of that word) and you’ll walk away feeling like you just saw an excellent, hilarious play. Highly recommend!

Scout is a fast, spunky, sharp-as-tacks group of improvisers doing a Harold. With a flare for the weird (in the best sense of that word), this is a group of truly unafraid and delightfully silly players who will jump on board anything and everything without hesitation. This is an ensemble that knows how to set each other up for success and laughs, and they do so effortlessly and with just the tiniest bit of snark. Highly recommend!

Can you tell us about a fond memory you have from your past as a Megawatt player?

When I first got onto Megawatt, I was horribly insecure and totally terrified (I cried a lot those first few months). That isn’t a fond memory, I know, but it’s true! But here’s the fond part: when I first got onto a team, I had so many people (lots of whom were veterans I’d admired from afar for years) reach out to both congratulate me and also offer up their ear(s) if ever I wanted to chat. I ended up taking a bunch of them up on that offer and was really grateful to connect with so many interesting people, many of whom had gone through similarly fraught adjustment periods when they first got on house teams. This shit is hard, man! And connecting with people who had been through similar experiences and had come out a-o-k was really helpful and meaningful for me. Megawatt isn’t just a collection of teams, it’s a community, and the generosity and support I received in those first few weeks has continued to this day. Sorry, I go sentimental real easy…did you want a funny memory? Once my team, TMI, did a super long tag run in which I got to actually slap each one of them in the face (!) over and over. It was totally bonkers but also felt ok because people were literally tagging in just to be slapped by me, which demonstrated the particularly high level of trust that’s always been present on that team. See, I made it sentimental again. Ugh I’m the worst.

Catch Megawatt every Wednesday at 7, 8, 9, and 10 pm, which two teams playing each hour. $7 for the whole night!