Saturday 27 January 2018

IMPRO Amsterdam 2018 - Mardi

Tuesday night began with The Ghost of Love, a format where 4 couples go on 4 very different romantic journeys. For each couple, two “ghosts” control them, mock them, add atmosphere, emotions and plot points. The ghosts leave the actors free to play the characters and situations and not worry too much (or anything) about the story, which is always helpful for an actor.

Ghosts, Actually. (photo by Robin Straaijer)

The resulting show was somehow very cinematic, touching and filled with metaphor and symbolism. The fact that all 4 paths were very different made this feel like a written piece. The paths were not just a new couple getting together, but an established couple getting over a rocky patch and a couple who has always been together who never experienced a bump, but were still a joy to watch. The fourth couple got together, but it didn’t work out, and this, more than anything, made it a well-rounded show. None of this, four neat, happy endings mulch. And seeing the characters in their couples (or not) in the final moments, dampened many a nasolacrimal duct.

L'Action (photo by Robin Straaijer)
From the joy and heartache of love, we moved on to the joy of joy. La Carpe Haute are from Strasbourg in the bit of France everyone thinks is in Germany. They do physical theatre with a ton of mime, clowning and plenty of heart and soul. If there is an object needed, they will not hesitate to demonstrate or be that object - whatever it is to make sure you know what that object is. There is never doubt. And even that object, no matter what it is, exudes joy. They love to play, they clearly love each other and they commit to whatever they discover about 104%.

To cap off the evening, there was a choice between two solo shows:

Las Vegas I Gave You My Heart (Photo by John Mabey)
The Laser Comedy Show by Chris Fair is comic book drawn right in front of you with the addition of sound. You’ll find comic books pretty lame after this.

The alternative was Trudy Carmichael Presents: The Improvised One-Woman Show, in which Robin Rothman plays a Las Vegas legend telling the improvised story of her life and career in between songs.

Lasers or divas, sometimes in life you have to choose between the two.

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