Hoopla Impro

Show Of The Week – INTERVIEW – Franston Pickle, Hoopla Clubhouse, London Bridge

This Thursday, if you happen to be in London then you should make your way to the Hoopla Clubhouse in London Bridge for this weeks Show of the Week. The twoprov troupe Franston Pickle are one of this weeks guests and if you are wanting a laugh then you should head to Hoopla on Thursday. I caught up with the duo to find out what they have in store.

Hello tell us all about who you all are and a little bit about yourselves?

We are the condimental pair, that you didn’t know you needed in your pantry! We are Robert Frimston & Francesca Reid.



How did the show come about?

We loved watching the improvisers who loved to be onstage together as a pair toughing it out, like badass amigos! And those who were confident enough to do silent or slow burn scenes and we said “We want to give this a shot, and you get me so I wan to do this with you!”.



How did your troupe form?

We had played with each other in various teams over the years and had always loved being in scenes together. We know that the other has our back so solidly that there is never a moment of worry, and we continue to develop as a unit and delight each other, that it is why it is exciting to play together.



Tell us a little bit about the show that are happening this week?

We are playing the fabulous Hoopla Clubhouse this week, hosted by the wonderfully exuberant Sean McInerney. It’s always a really great place to have fun and see a really eclectic mix of improv styles and a mix of newer and older teams.



What improv styles do you want to see more of this year and why?

We want to see more of an emphasis on organic slow burning improv, where people are reeky taking themselves seriously as performers, whilst still having fun and taking risks.



What festivals are you guys planning on heading to this year?

I, Francesca will be closing The Hoopla Improv festival with Dreamweaver quartet this year and we both hope to make an appearance at Edinburgh Festival at some point.



It is April – the month of fools! What is the silliest character you have brought to a show and why?

I think that our collectively weirdest and strangest characters, without a doubt, were our two male raveners at the Tower of London. Who desperately wanted to break free of their loveless heterosexual marriages and be free to make love and include their birds . . . need we say more ha ha!



What advice would you give for people thinking about starting an improv troupe themselves?

We would always say, “Fail forward”, make sure that you are in a space where you are open to getting things wrong in a big and enthusiastic way and learn from each of those failures. Most importantly, find your voice as a member of the community, make sure you feel seen and heard and safe and whenever joining a new group, establish your code of conduct and ethos as a team and call out nonsense, in whatever form it may take, either at home or in the wider community.



What is the best thing about a night for the audience?

I think the best part of an evening for an audience is a mix of things. It is a little of the overall sense of kindred spirits creating in front of them and being in a joyful space and a little of seeing a blank stage be transformed into a full thriving world of possibility in front of their very eyes.


If people want to find out more about you where can they follow you on social media?
They can find us on:
Twitter: https://twitter.com/PickleFranston (@Franstonpickle)
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/franstonpickle_/?hl=en (@Franstonpickle_)


And Finally in three words – Why should people come and see the show?
Characters. Pathos. Paced




What is the strangest thing you’ve ever eaten?

A deep-fried cock roach that was 3 months old brought back from Thailand for a dare!


If you could trade lives with anyone for a day who would it be and why?

FR: I would love to trade places with Frida Kahlo, when she was painting and deep in the political revolution of the time!

RF: I would love to change places with Henry the 8th when he was on the hunt and gorging on grouse!


If you could paint anything what would you paint?

We collectively would love to paint the Golden Gate Bridge – as it would be a brilliant view…that or the Clifton suspension bridge if there isn’t a lot of budget!


What is the most delightful word you can think of?



Favourite song?

“Joan Osborne – What if God Was One of Us”


Who is your comedy hero and why?

We love Dame Edna Everage – even though some of the humour may not stand up to the wokeness we and comedy audiences have today, it was something very charming and yet wholly subversive at the time and continues to be as their body ages and they still occupy space in a world that fetishises youth.


What is your favourite movie quote?
Anton, werewolf: [to all the werewolves] What are we? We’re… [All, together] We’re Werewolves, not Swear-Wolves.


Who is your favourite cartoon character and why?

We love Vinne, from “Biker Mice From Mars”

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