Excitement. But not just any excitement... this was that feeling that I used to get in the spring, when it was getting close to finals time (which meant it was also close to summer vacation), so there was an anxiety there, looming, but with sweet, sweet freedom peeking over its shoulder waving to me with a mischievous glint in its eye.
There are a NUMBER of reasons for excitement tinged anxiety of late. One of the most obvious being the Un-Scripted show that we opened this week.
It's been a LONG time since I've done short form Improv. When did the Jesters last perform... 2005 maybe? This show has been ALOT of work (I'm assistant directing) but alot of fun as well. And to be perfectly honest, it's freaking SPECTACULAR to have a regular Improv gig again. I didn't realize how much I missed having a schedule of performances like I used to in Boston. But of course, the anxiety comes in (not in a BAD way, mind you) because this show is so different from anything I've done before.
Five Actors. Two Hours. No Set List.
We come out, introduce the show, warm up the audience, then we roll for two hours or so (minus a 10 minute intermission). The format that developed out of last year's run of Un-Scripted: unscripted was that the show is never stopped. So, when a scene ends in blackout, the lights don't come up on a solitary Improvisor who then explains the next game and gets a suggestion for it before the lights go down so they can come back up to start the next bit. Instead, if explanations are to be done at all, they're done in character. Suggestions are obtained in character. After the intro, we don't talk to the audience again as ourselves until the show is done.
Oh, and did I mention no set list? Yeah, there's no "Okay, these are the games you'll be playing tonight, and here's who's in them." It's a crap shoot as to what's going to happen. Someone comes out and starts something, and we discover what it is at the same time the audience does. It's a freakin RUSH. Because you can start something, and it can (and will) evolve into something completely different before you know it.
A perfect example of this is a scene from our opening night. Christian came out and started a scene that was a riff on the show ROME from HBO. But it changed... (you can watch these in hi-def if you want, just click the HD button that appears after you hit play)
... into a musical. And because there's no set list, if we have alot of fun with something we can bring it back... and it can change more...
... into a mesh of two TOTALLY different genres. But we all know the rule of threes... Once is funny. Two is... well, just two. Three... three is the magic number. So we brought it back one last time.
While I'm kicking myself for stupid little "I've got short form rust" mistakes, I really enjoyed this show, and I'm looking forward to the rest of the run.
So... more exciting things later!!!