Saturday 3 February 2018

IMPRO Amsterdam 2018 - Gotta get down on Friday

On Friday I took a workshop on hip hop improv because one should always push oneself. Plus it’s a workshop with a beatboxer in it, and pretty much anything without a beatboxer is lame. I won’t even go shopping these days without someone beside me laying down some dope beats.

The night started with Friend Friend, where two friends, Amy and Anna, channel their love for each other to portray a heart-warming array of characters. There is so much charm and calm joy on display here. You get drawn into the worlds they are themselves discovering and feel you’ve just watched a show of two people giving each other lovely gifts.

I'll Be There For You. (Photo by Marwan Youssef)
The second show was Stuck in the middle. In this show, one of the players is selected to be “stuck in the middle” which means they are on the stage the whole time and it’s up to the other players to start scenes with you, to look after you, and to mess with you. I was blessed enough that day to be the one selected.

You know that feeling when you are in a toy store and one of the staff comes up and says “here’s a large scale millenium falcon, play with this” and then when you’ve had a little fun another comes up and says “here’s a lego castle, play with this” and shortly after another appears and says “here’s an classic Atari console fully loaded with Ms Pacman…” (Let me know if my references are dated at all.) Anyway if you can understand the concept of this then you understand what it’s like to be the chosen one in this format. A gang of talented performers give you a selection of awesome gifts and the main thing you have to do is react  I’m still a little hyper from it all.

We'll be there for you (Photo by Marwan Youssef)
After all this fun, there was more fun. A choice of fun. There was The Final Gig, a duo show showing the final concert of a legendary, nonexistent musical pairing, with great singing and high emotions.
The other show was Decibel, a Franco-Finno trio who combine mime and acrobatics with their improvisation. And I really do mean acrobatics, I’ve never seen a group, climb, carry each other and tumble with such ease. They also do the one of the seemingly most difficult improvisational skills: not speaking. Also they had beatboxers guesting because, well, if you can you really really should.

This is the last time we'll be here.