For June we are very excited to be able to go behind the scenes of Cambridge’s oldest Improv troupe, the group is a mixture of university students and members of the community. This month we talk to members of the troupe all about how they prepare for shows, stories from the stage and even get to speak to some of the troupes one on one to find out a bit more about them! This week we are talking to different members of Cambridge Impronauts to find out more about them.
Player Profile – Dylan
Hello Dylan how long have you been improvising?
Since the start of university so about two and a half years now.
How did you get into improv?
I saw an Impronauts show at my college during freshers week and I was completely in awe. It was like watching a magic trick. I wanted to figure out how it was done so I signed up for the Open Workshops that the Impronauts ran every week and since then I’ve been hooked.
What is your favourite style of improv and why?
I really like long forms. It’s just a lot of fun to try and weave a complete 1 hour story out of a couple of prompts. And you get to develop your own character arc as the show progresses and do a lot of fun recurring jokes.
What is your favourite warm up game?
Bippity bippity bop! It gets you warmed up both mentally and physically.
Favourite short form game?
Party quirks! I like a good guessing game.
What are the three top tips anyone has ever taught you in improv?
Make bold character choices. If I don’t remind myself of this I’ll end up just playing a generic everyman character or worse… myself.
Make a plan if you want and just before you go to perform it, do something else. When I started improv I struggled to truly be spontaneous – if I was waiting for my scene I would always be thinking about what I was going to do. This tip stopped that because it meant I could satisfy my urge to prepare myself, but at the last second I’ll forget all about that and pick something completely different.
Always feel like you can immediately end a scene you aren’t comfortable with. It makes me feel a lot more comfortable going into scenes knowing this is always an option.
In no more than 5 words, what advice would you give them?
Immediately commit to something ridiculous
What are some of your favourite new acts you have come across this year and why?
I’ll give a shootout to bendy house improv. I performed with them last year and have watched a few of their shows since and they’re not only talented improvisers but lovely people as well.
How would you describe your personal sort of improv?
Witty or deadpan responses to the chaos that’s unfolding around me.
Describe each Cambridge Impronaut member in one word
It would probably take too long to do them all, but if I had to describe the Impronauts in general in one word it would be “accepting”.