This month we are travelling all the way (well metaphorically) to Amsterdam to learn all about the improv scene there! All months we will be chatting to easylaughs that offer comedy shows, improv and stand up classes and improv workshops, in English. Throughout out the month we are talking to each member of the team to find out more about them.
Player Profile: Ashley
Hello Ashley how long have you been improvising?
Since 1994. So, how many years is that? Oh god.
How did you get into improv?
In Australia there was a Theatre Sports TV show in the 90s. After watching it I went to see impro in a bar and signed up for the course that all impro shows advertise at the end.
What is your favourite style of improv and why?
I don’t like to have to remember any rules, so I like open formats and genre shows, where the rules are just conventions that you already know.
Who are your top 5 favourite improvisers and why?
Oh, this is a tough one to narrow down.
Most recently La Carpe Haute blew me away with their very physical silent shows.
The English women Charlotte Gittens and Lauren Shearing are great with the use of subtext and acting chops.
My good friend Kiki Hohnen who makes me laugh out loud every time I see her play.
And my friend Troy Baker who was good from day one and the audience loved him. Sadly, he got bored with it and quit impro.
And every member of easylaughs have a speciality that I love everytime I see them on stage.
What is your favourite warm up game?
I like Samurai because it is a good combination of moving, yelling and pretending to have a cool sword.
Favourite short form game?
Backwards scene, because it breaks your brain.
What are the three top tips anyone has ever taught you in improv?
For me, doing impro I am constantly having epiphanies where I realise what the teacher meant in my first impro class:
“Don’t try to be funny. Don’t invent, just use what is in the scene. Be invested.”
What are some of your favourite new acts you have come across this year and why?
This is the year of COVID, so I haven’t seen much new improv. But I got to see Rama Nichols at the beginning of the year. She was great.
How would you describe your personal sort of improv?
I try not to think about how my improv looks to others, but when I do improv I think I play detail oriented and technically. I love funny little details and try to avoid adding anything unneeded to a scene.
Describe each easylaughs member in one word