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Letting us in on the joke: Lane’s improv show

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Improv participants practicing the show's introduction.

Improv participants practicing the show's introduction.

Marilyn Muncy

Marilyn Muncy

Improv participants practicing the show's introduction.

By Marilyn Muncy, News/Features Editor

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Girls crowd around empty hands that are pretending to hold a phone, gossiping about a fast food scandal as a boy circles behind and snoops at what they are looking at. With his well-timed response of “what… wow,” the room erupts with gut-busting laughter.

This is a moment where improv participants are practicing for the upcoming show.

Ms. Hanson, a teacher for Drama I, II, and III, is helping to teach the participants and prepare them for the show.

“A lot of students love improv, and we were trying to find a way to give them an opportunity to practice improv and learn about improv, but also a chance to perform,” Hanson said.

David Harrison, Div. 071, is a participant in the show.

“Improv is like when someone throws a ball at you and they’re like ‘think fast,’” Harrison said. “That ball is improv. Sometimes you catch it, sometimes it hits you in the head.”

The fall show will take place on Oct. 25, with the first show at 3:30 p.m. and the second at 6:00 p.m. Both will be in Room 148, which will be turned into a studio theater.

“Improv works best in a small, intimate performance space, as opposed to a large space like the auditorium,” Hanson said.

Hanson and Meacham talked to a Second City instructor about suggestions for teaching the participants improv.

Thalia Kennedy, Div. 151, who is in the improv show, said that she has a little experience from Lane’s acting studio in 7th and 8th grade and seven years of experience from a theater camp, but neither was specifically focused on comedy or improv.   

Kennedy said that one of her favorite games is “freeze,” which is when two people act out a scene and a person watching the two will say “freeze,” taking the exact position of one of the last two and making a whole new scene from it.

“Someone was in a really weird pose when freeze was called and they were tagged out, it was something completely different and the person changed it immediately into an eighties workout video,” Kennedy said.

According to Kennedy, she is participating in the show because she wanted to make others laugh, she enjoys comedy, and she is drawn to the suddenness and creativity of a performance.

“Comedy has always been a thing that I have always been kind of good at it, and I like to make other people laugh,” Kennedy said. “It’s a thing that I enjoy, and being able to do that is always a big fulfillment. So I guess that’s why the comedy drives me.”

Harrison is taking Drama I this year and is participating in the event because of his interest in the world of acting.

“Acting has always interested me and improv is just a pure form of acting,” Harrison said.

So far, her experience in preparing for the show has only heighted her interest in improv.

“It’s definitely made me want to do improv more often, because I have always been

thinking about doing a class at Second City or going to an improv show,” Kennedy said.

Hanson said that they are having seasonal shows this year: fall, winter and spring. The winter show will be directed by Ms. Meacham, another drama teacher, since Hanson will be directing the musical.

“We have a really great crew, a really great team, and they’re having fun, and that’s the important thing,” Hanson said.

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About the Contributor
Marilyn Muncy, News/Features Editor

Marilyn is a senior here at Lane Tech and this is her second year taking journalism. She loves the journalistic environment and also participates in the schools Wattpad club. Along with reading and writing, she also enjoys the arts, like drawing and singing, during her free time. She is quiet, open-minded, and curious. In all, Marilyn constantly desires to further educate herself and continue growing in the arts.

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Letting us in on the joke: Lane’s improv show