Improv Show

Kayla Cortez, Marina Svang, and Mia Colson

LONG BEACH, CA – Guests gathered in the Playhouse on January 19 to witness Wilson’s first Improv Show of the year! Hosted by the Drama Club, students from the Improv team got to show off their acting skills and gave the audience a good laugh throughout the whole evening. 

The Improv team itself began some time around 2020, but didn’t make much of a comeback until this year. 9 actors were onstage, and each of them wore an “Improv 2020” shirt, as a sort of homage.

“I like it, I like how everyone is going well with each scenario of the game and interacting with the audience. It was very funny” stated Jasmine Jordan, a junior in the Arts pathway. 

Unfortunately Wilson Theater teacher, Anne Smith, got into a serious bike accident before the improv show. Students were sad to hear Smith wouldn’t be there to show off their skills. Smith was also sad she missed out and glad the improvers went on without her. “It’s definitely hard not having her support here” stated Jess Ward, who works with the improv team here at Wilson. 

The night began with two actors. They were to play out a scene with suggestions from the audience. Ms. Ward would keep a line from the scene and switch out actors to pick up where they left off. From Australians stealing kangaroos, to a robbery, and charity. Seeing as this was improv, the actors did an excellent job working with what scenarios the audience had suggested, as well as making it an enjoyable experience. 

The second was called “Deja Vu”. 7 actors were to leave the stage while 2 played out a scene. Once they finished, an audience member was chosen to recap what the last two actors were doing. This spiraled into minimum wage McDonald’s employees dealing with an upset mother.

Another, “Pan Left”, was like switching channels on TV. 2 actors would be given a genre to play out until someone said “Pan Left!”, meaning to switch the genre, as well as switch out actors. It was a neat combination of drama at the Simpson household, or an unwilling “Chosen One” and his mentor.

The next involved 4 actors. 2 would hide their hands behind their back, while the other 2 would stand behind them and act with their hands. One scene involved crying at a cemetery for a stranger, while the other was a lovely chase at the beach.

One of the last few games involved acting out the life of Lucy, a character made up with audience participation and played by Montsi Caldera, a junior in the WAVE pathway.

They described acting as a great way to build up communication skills, as well as building trust with fellow actors.

“Being on stage for improv is exciting, but also a bit nerve-wracking, but more exciting.”

Many references to movie franchises, as well as TV shows were made. Star Wars, The Simpsons, even Gordon Ramsay. While the show lasted from 7pm-8pm with a 10 minute intermission, both the audience and actors had a fun time.

After a wonderful performance, the next improv show will be announced once Ms. Ward and Ms. Smith can decide.