20 November 2012
|We did not see the Grand Place|
Having just returned from another Brussels improv weekend, I'm reminded that those reputational elements don't quite do it justice. Except for the many beers.
Based on the great turnout for a spring series of improv, I returned for another full weekend of shows and workshops, this time with the delightful Paul Foxcroft. It was again at the Warehouse Theatre and hosted by the American Theatre Company.
|Paul and I had a pretty good time in Brussels.|
- The large appreciative crowd on Saturday contributed to a very high-energy show. Sunday's show had a smaller audience, and a very different dynamic (and not solely because Shane Dempsey wasn't in the audience).
- Some new personalities joined the intermediate workshop group and positively altered the dynamic.
- Paul had a terrible waffle. In Belgium. It is possible.
- Saturday's Marbles (featuring Paul Foxcroft) show was the most murder-heavy improv show I've ever been part of. There was a body count of approximately fourteen people in a forty minute show. To be fair it wasn't all murder; some of those people were eaten by a bear before the start of the show. But one other had a nunchuku pierce his forehead. So yeah, lots of dead bodies. We graphically 'yes anded' death for the whole entire show.
- At one point in Sunday's show Paul and I were emotionally devastated by the end of our relationship with a beloved floor safe. It was one of the funnest scenes I've played in a long time. All due to surprise and emotional commitment.
- I plan workshops quite carefully. And it usually doesn't take long for that plan to be abandoned. Kinda like an improv show; once things get going, it takes on a life of its own.
- Improv doesn't need to be taught/learned solely for its application to improv theatre. It's good stuff for life too.
- Hanging out in familiar neighbourhoods with lots of great people - friends old and new - and spending my days up to my chest in improv and improvisers never fails to be amazing.
One telling moment was off the top of Sunday's show, when I asked the audience to tell me about their really boring job. There is so much beauracracy in Brussels, I thought surely someone had an incredible mundane job they'd like to share with the rest of us. My thought being that Paul and I could find some joy and excitement in this daily drudgery. A voice came from the back, loudly and clearly: "Cattery" (as in a place where people rear and look after cats).
Naturally I had some follow-up questions. Turns out this guy owns a cattery in Vladivostock. I was expecting something along the lines of "I do tax law for medium-sized car brake manufacturers and suppliers." Instead, I got exact opposite of that: cat wrangling in Russia.
What I'm getting at is that Brussels still continually surprises me. I'm looking forward to next round.
at 4:04 PM Posted by Ryan Millar