Improv

Ones To Watch 2023 – INTERVIEW – St. Doctors Hospital

It is that time of the year where we celebrate the acts that you need to keep an eye on in 2023. It is an exciting time of the year as it means we can talk to acts to find out what they have in store for audiences and what you can look forward to in the new year. Today we speak to The Free Association group St Doctor’s Hospital, an improvised medical drama who are performing at the Vault festival as well as other shows across the UK this year. I spoke to the team to find out more.

 

Hello tell us all about your improv troupe?

We’re a show from The Free Association in London, performing a totally improvised and very silly episode of medical TV show, inspired by the likes of ER, Grey’s Anatomy and Scrubs. We’re Kiran Benawra, Kat Bond, Ian Thomas Day, Graham Dickson, Patrick Dishman, Chris Gau, Shaun Lowthian, Naomi Petersen, Haley McGree, Nadege Nguyen and Alison Thea-Skot.

How did your troupe come about?

Our cast is assembled from performers from acts like Austentatious, SORRY, Do Not Adjust Your Stage, The Wilsons, Minority Report and more. Like the Avengers but if they wore white coats and stethoscopes over their improv plaid.

How did you get into improv?

We’re mostly very long in the tooth now, but our cast have trained with the UCB, iO, Second City, The Free Association, Monkey Toast and more over the years. 

What are your plans improv wise for 2023?

We’ve got a bunch of exciting shows lined up for the next year, including at regular dates at The Free Association, VAULT Festival (Weds 15th to Sat 18th February), then touring.

What other improv acts are you looking forward to seeing perform online or in person to this year?

The Free Association has a rapidly growing and diverse community of talent coming through our classes and shows, with shows every Thursday to Sunday. We’re excited for a brand new seasonal programme, including exciting new headline shows and regular nights from legendary crowd favourites and some of the world’s best improvisers.

What styles do you hope to see more of in improv this year?

We love how diverse the improv community in the UK is. There’s room for all kinds of show, but we have a special place in our heart for straightforwardly very funny long-form improv. We’d love to see more innovative takes on what a long-form improv show can be.

What improv troupe is your ones to watch in 2023 and why?

The Free Association has a host of very exciting shows coming up over 2023 so we can’t choose between our babies! Keep your eyes peeled for each season when we announce over at thefreeassociation.co.uk 

Are you on social media? If so how can people find out more about your troupe?

Catch the latest from across The Free Association on twitter and instagram @faimprov and thefreeassociation.co.uk

Three words why people should come and see you this year?

Real Medical Advice 


QUICK FIRE ROUND

The movie or television show you are looking forward to seeing this year?

Grey’s Anatomy. We just feel like it’s not had enough seasons yet.

Your favourite book?

Also Grey’s Anatomy

One thing you will always remember about 2022?

Reading and watching Grey’s Anatomy. Also, how fantastic that we’ve had 4 different Health Secretaries in 2022. What an excellent way to run things…

If you could paint anything what would you paint? 

A skeleton. And we have, though it wasn’t strictly permitted under our medical license.

What is the most delightful word you can think of?

Incurable.

Favourite album?

Anything by Dr Dre.

 

Where would you love to go on holiday this year?

No Doctor has time for a holiday. So we’ll be taking a very serious and busy working trip to the highly professional and dull 2023 Pharmaceutical Conference in Honolulu.

 

What is your favourite quote from a television show?

‘What’s the difference between God and Doctor? God knows he’s not a Doctor’.

Who is your favourite film character and why?

Hard to separate the great movie doctors: Zhivago, No and Strangelove. So we’ll say Batman.

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