Monthly Archives: February 2017

Acting Out Blog: VOTE FOR US!!!

We are up for awards in the Midland Zone Readers Awards (2017) as Best LGBT Social (& Sports) Group! We KNOW we’re a fantastic group (and are so modest with it too, natch!), but the official recognition would be even better.

So: follow the link.  You know what to do….   http://midlandszone.co.uk/news/midlands-zone-readers-awards-2017-finalists-revealed/12362


MidlandsImprov.com: GIG GUIDE: MARCH 2017

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THURS 2ND – NOTTINGHAM GLEE

[NG1 7EH]

The Noise Next Door:  Eight time sell-out veterans of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival bring their Uproar Tour to Nottingham.

http://thenoisenextdoor.co.uk/shows/

FRI 3RD – TAMWORTH METHODIST CHURCH

[B79 7UD]

Ministry Of Improv: Entertainment from the unofficial non-government fictional department for improvised comedy.  Part of the Tamworth Literary Festival.

https://www.facebook.com/MinistryOfImprov

SAT 4TH – NOTTINGHAM PLAYHOUSE

[NG1 5AF]

Rhymes Against Humanity: The East Midlands’ only improvised musical company interview an audience member ato inform a fully improvised 45-minute piece of musical theatre.

https://www.facebook.com/missimp.co.uk

SAT 4TH – CRITERION FREE HOUSE

[LE1 5JN]

The Same Faces:  Monthly Leicester show, taking ideas from you to make brilliant comedy sketches live on stage.  

https://www.facebook.com/TheSameFaces/

SUN 5TH – THE PATRICK KAVANAGH

[B13 8BX]

Improv Jam:  Free show where all improvisers are invited to come up on stage and play.

https://www.facebook.com/FatPenguinImprovComedy/

MON 6TH – GUILD OF STUDENTS

[B15 2TU]

Improvabunga:  A murder mystery special. All old flames, new business partners, and mysterious strangers are invited to the last and greatest party.

https://www.facebook.com/WatchThisUoB

WEDS 8TH – THE PATRICK KAVANAGH

[B13 8BX]

Fat Penguin:  Free improvised comedy show in Birmingham with support by a headline act from one of the UK’s top improv troupes.  Headlining this month: Lester City

https://www.facebook.com/FatPenguinImprovComedy/

THURS 9TH – THE MALT CROSS

[NG1 6FG]

Gorilla Burger:  Regular Nottingham show where everyone is welcome to take part, simply by putting your name in a hat. 

https://www.facebook.com/missimp.co.uk

FRI 10TH – ESQUIRES COFFEE HOUSE

[CV1 1JD]

Wow impro:  Free comedy night from Coventry-based improv troupe.

https://www.facebook.com/wowimprocomedy/

MON 13TH – GUILD OF STUDENTS

[B15 2TU]

Improvabunga:  A cop show special.  We’re back for one last case, a case to go out on and we want you along for the ride.

https://www.facebook.com/WatchThisUoB

WEDS 15TH – THE VICTORIA 

[B1 1BN]

The Kneejerks:  Free improvised comedy and theatre from Birmingham’s newest group.  

https://www.facebook.com/thekneejerksUK/

THURS 16TH – STATION PUB

[B73 6AT]

The Noise Next Door:  Eight time sell-out veterans of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival bring their Uproar Tour to Sutton Coldfield.

http://thenoisenextdoor.co.uk/shows/

THURS 16TH – ISLAND BAR 

[B1 1LT]

Hilarity Ensues:  Monthly show in central Birmingham featuring stand up, sketch and improvised comedy.

https://www.facebook.com/ensueshilarity/

FRI 17TH – NOTTINGHAM UNIVERSITY

[NG7 2RD]

UON Improv: Join these intrepid performers for games and scenes the like of which have never been seen before, and will never be seen again! There may even be a seasonal surprise at the end…

https://www.facebook.com/UoNImprov/

FRI 17TH – THEATRE SEVERN

[SY3 8FT]

The Noise Next Door:  Eight time sell-out veterans of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival bring their Uproar Tour to Shrewsbury.

http://thenoisenextdoor.co.uk/shows/

SAT 18TH – BUNKERS HILL

[NG1 1FP]

Paria Theatre: Nottinghan’s favourite two-prov is back for one night only.  Inspired by an audience question, this show mixes theatre and comedy in pursuit of an answer.

https://www.facebook.com/PariaExchange/

MON 20TH – BLUE ORANGE THEATRE 

[B18 6AD]

Box Of Frogs:  Monthly show in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter with all your favourite improv games.  Absolutely free, with their usual cast iron guarantee – ‘laugh, or your money back!’

https://www.facebook.com/BoxofFrogsImpro/

MON 20TH – UPSTAIRS AT THE WESTERN

[LE3 0GA]

Uncle Armando:  A guest stand up comedian improvises monologues, based on your one-word suggestions, and our players will then improvise brilliant scenes based upon them.

https://www.facebook.com/TheSameFaces/

WEDS 22ND – GUILD OF STUDENTS

[B15 2TU]

Improvabunga:  A science fiction special.  All we know is it’s the future and it’s a brave new universe and we’re going to forge this future as we go.

https://www.facebook.com/WatchThisUoB

THURS 23RD – THE LOOKING GLASS

[LE3 5LG]

Unidentified Flying Improv:  Another chance to see this established group after their performance at the Leicester Comedy Festival.

https://www.facebook.com/UnidentifiedFlyingImprov/

SAT 25TH – THE BLACK PRINCE 

[NN1 4AE]

The Same Faces:  Monthly Northampton show, taking ideas from you to make brilliant comedy sketches live on stage.

https://www.facebook.com/TheSameFaces/

SAT 25TH – BROMSGROVE ARTRIX

[B60 1PQ]

The Noise Next Door:  Eight time sell-out veterans of the Edinburgh Fringe Festival bring their Uproar Tour to Bromsgrove.

http://thenoisenextdoor.co.uk/shows/

MON 27TH – ANGEL MICROBREWERY

[NG1 1LP]

Smash Night: See the freshest improvised theatre in a super-fun evening, featuring new teams, new ideas, previously unperformed shows and tonnes more.

https://www.facebook.com/missimp.co.uk

Have I missed a show?  Get in touch and let me know.

facebook.com/midlandsimprov/                                    @MidlandsImprov

 

 


MidlandsImprov.com: REVIEW: DUMMY

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Jason Shotts and Colleen Doyle make up Dummy.  This is a two person improv show that has won multiple awards in Chicago, the international home of improvisation.  Their shows are known for having deep and realistic characters and relationships, a step removed from the weird-but-funny scenes that are created by many other acts.  Their focus on recognisable characters is intensely rewarding, and shows us real people on stage just as all great theatre should.

The show started with Jason chatting with an audience member to find out more about them, covering their day cleaning cupboards and a piece of artwork they were creating about hands and feet.  The first scene came directly from this, with two teachers in an art gallery studying a painting of fingers and toes.  The contrast between Colin, the dedicated educator and Laura, a failed engineer who had only later turned to teaching, was gentle but clear.  The rest of the show explored these two characters, their relationship with each other and how they fit into the wider world.

Colin, who cared about teaching, lost his job when one of the parents over-reacted to how he handled a sensitive topic in class.  Falling back on his art history degree, he started working at a gallery, bumping into Laura on the day she had finally had enough of her class and snapped.  As she told them what she really thought of them and quit to find a new career, he stepped in and explained to them everything that art had to offer.  His knowledge and passion shone through, leading him to win a new role at that school as Art Director.

Laura meanwhile threw herself into installation art, manufacturing cupboards that wouldn’t close.  This intentional defect was built on the lack of precision that had damaged her work as an engineer, embracing her weakness and showing it to the world.  Towards the end of the play we discovered that this weakness had led to a bridge she designed collapsing, and each cupboard she built was a tribute coffin to those who had died through her mistake.

As always, the plot that ran through the show was less important than the golden moments when we got to see the characters react to the situation they were in.  Colin’s reaction when Laura started sharing personal information with her class was a delight, and the poor child she picked on (played alternately by Jason and Colleen, depending on the scene) got more laughs for his embarrassed silence than anything he said.  As well as laughter there was sadness and introspection, and some deeper points about the areas where the responsibilities of teachers and parents overlap.  A great show.

Dummy are a US-based company who tour internationally.  You can see some of their work here.


Fierce Festival: DIY 14: 2017 – Call For Proposals!

We’re supporting DIY14! Professional development BY artists FOR artists.

The Live Art Development Agency has opened applications for its next round of its artist development scheme, DIY14; DIY is an opportunity for artists working in Live Art to conceive and run unusual research, training and professional development projects for themselves and other artists.

Fierce will be partnering with LADA to host a Diverse Actions related DIY.

Live Art and Diverse Actions (x 3)

Diverse Actions is a Live Art UK initiative which champions culturally diverse ambition, excellence and talent in Live Art. Diverse Actions builds on Live Art’s vital role as a practice of artistic innovation and a space to express complex ideas of cultural identity. Running for three years, and supported by a grant from Arts Council England’s Ambition for Excellence programme, Diverse Actions will support 3 DIYs in 2017.

We invite proposals for projects led by culturally diverse practitioners. While no limitations are placed on subject matter, activity, or approach, proposals which explore complex ideas of cultural identity, or which have been specifically designed for culturally diverse participants, are encouraged.

Partner organisations for the Diverse Actions DIYs will be Agency for Agency (London), Fierce Festival (Birmingham), and Iniva (National). For more information about these opportunities, please contact Megan.

The deadline for applications is 12pm on March 13th with supported projects taking place between June and November 2017; you can find out more about DIY14, including specific project briefs, partner organisations, and FAQs here

Fierce Festival: Fierce FWD at PA/NG

mac Birmingham’s next local artist’s event PA/NG kicks of on March 3rd, promising ‘the best in local emerging artists spanning music, live art, performance and digital art at mac. Co-curated by The Vibe and featuring cameos from nationally-acclaimed artists, PA/NG will be part-gig, part-meal (soup provided!) and part-opportunity to meet other like-minded young people.’.

This edition of the night will also feature Fierce FWD artist Vivian Ezugha showcasing her work in progress “anyi na-aga otú ndi ocha si mba (we are going to the white man’s country)”.

PA/NG will be a great opportunity to engage with local talent, and get a glimpse of the calibre of work the Fierce FWD scheme is producing this year.

Tickets here

Fierce Festival: Diverse Actions Awarded ‘Ambitions for Excellence’ Grant

Live Art UK’s Diverse Actions initiative, on which Fierce is a partner, has been awarded Arts Council England’s ‘Ambitions for Excellence’ grant.

‘Over three years, commencing in April 2017, LAUK member organisations will support 14 bursaries, 9 workshops, 15 residencies, 15 commissions, 3 international masterclasses, 15 tours, a publication and a symposium.

The legacy of Diverse Actions will be held by the practitioners who participate and benefit from the initiative – those new to Live Art and those who extend their practice.’

Read the full article from Live Art UK here