This month is February, which some class as the month of love so I thought it was a great thing to do was sit down and chat with someone who loves comedy and performing so much that they do a lot of different things, everything from acting to improv to even a global sketch group! Today we talk all about the world of Sketch, Kate’s team Naked Ramen have a show tomorrow so I wanted to hear all about it.
You are part of a new international all-women sketch group tell us about that?
Yes! It’s all very exciting! So, my Trash Kingdom coach Jenn Bianchi mentioned to me that she wanted to start writing some sketches regularly. I wanted to write and perform regularly too and was like ‘let’s do it’! So, we got together some fellow funny women we already know and love and that had mentioned sketch-writing before and Naked Ramen was born!
Tell us a little bit about the other members of the team?
So, we are me and…
Jenn Bianchi. (Trash Kingdom) An improviser, coach and teacher from North Carolina, USA.
Amanda Bigford. An artist and performer from Alberta, Canada.
Kristen Drenning. (KRATE) A prolific online improviser and all-round creative wordsmith based in Austin, Texas, USA.
Roxi Jara. (Trash Kingdom) An improviser, performer and teacher from Virginia, USA.
Sonya Feibert. (Trash Kingdom) An improviser, performer with a 100% joyful soul from Idaho, USA.
How did you come up with the name Naked Ramen?
Jenn had said a throw-away funny comment about the premise for a sketch which was something like, ‘So there I was naked, and eating Ramen….’ And it just stood out when we were thinking of a team name! We thought yep, that’s strong, random and fun with an element of WTF? And that’s just like us! Oh, and we are all obsessed with food too so that was another plus.
We are all still learning how to tell the global time, even now! It is confusing as we have at least 2 time zones for the U.S crew, Canada then me in the UK!Kate Bell
How did you get into writing sketch?
I’ve always written down funny ideas for sketches all my life! Then in 2016 I took Chris Head’s Sketch-writing course, then his character stand-up course and then his sitcom-writing course! Second City also came over in 2016 and I took their Improv to Sketch course too which was great.
How is it different to improv?
Sketch is normally scripted. Within that script, sentences and action are crafted to have maximum comedy impact using the fewest words possible really. They are to have rhythm and pace and get in and get out and not outstay their welcome.
This is often very different to improv because you don’t edit yourself and once it’s out there and been said it’s done!
Do you ever get writers block? How do you overcome this?
Oh yes! Staring at that blank page is intimidating. I can have an idea for something and I just can’t quite find a way to execute it.
I always talk to my partner, Steve and the Naked Ramen gang about the ideas and we throw around ideas together and 9 times out of 10 at least one person has a great idea of how to execute the idea or another angle on making it funny.
I’ve always written down funny ideas for sketches all my life!Kate Bell
How do you rehearse a format such as your own?
At the moment we chat, are inspired to write about a certain subject, go away write either a full-on sketch or ideas and then come back the next time and share. We all chip in and then we go back and do re-writes and then when it’s all in a good place we cast the scene between us and run it a few times and tweak.
Is it difficult working with people in different time zones? How do you work around this?
We are all still learning how to tell the global time, even now! It is confusing as we have at least 2 time zones for the U.S crew, Canada then me in the UK!
It can be tricky but we are all good at sorting our availability out quite quickly and being available!
What is the best thing about being in Naked Ramen?
Getting to write, chat and perform with such a bloody talented group of women. I am always so impressed each time we meet by how good everyone’s ideas and writing skills are!
What is the most challenging?
Timezones and time.
What shows do you have coming up?
We have our next show on Thurs 10th Feb and it’s our ‘No-Date February’ Valentines show. And that will hopefully be streaming live from our FB page!
What is your favourite sketch you have created and why?
So far, I really loved the sketch from our Halloween show last year where I played a beauty counter assistant and Kristen played an evil witch. It was ridiculous. We have some great stuff coming up in our February show!
If people want to find out more about the team where can they visit?
@nakedramencomedy on Insta and https://www.facebook.com/nakedramencomedy on FB.