Improvisers Graham Johnson and Beth Kerridge are performing their brand new format When it Rains, this friday night at Local Heroes. Their new show will be experimental in style and will be performed in the round. Graham told us more about how rehearsals have been going and what they are looking forward to on Friday night.
I've been a real nerd for experiments in theatre for a while. Immersive pieces, things that use tech, all sorts. So last year I got thinking about how this could be applied to improv. I mean, it's short for improvised THEATRE after all. Why can't we get in on that fun?
So by the time I went up to Beth after Andy Yeoh's dramatic improv workshop on the BIT's first birthday, I had an idea for my show in my head, I just needed someone to work with who would really suit what I was trying to do, and Beth seemed to be on the same page as me about wanting to do something less comedic. So when I went up to her and said 'Beth, I've got an idea for a dramatic improv show, you and me are in different rooms and we have walkie talkies and it's all arty and weird,' I was really lucky and she said 'Yes!'
Since then we've been rehearsing regularly, firstly just trying to stretch out our dramatic skills having been practicing comedy for so long, and then we got the walkie talkies and tried to work out exactly how you improvise when you can't see each other and can't do any physical edits. As it turns out, you just lean on one of the building blocks of improv: listening.
We've discovered all sorts of tricks along the way, especially with the help of Imogen Palmer who has coached a couple of rehearsals. I don't want to spoil all of them though, as they're really fun, and we can't give away ALL our secrets.
I'm really excited to show the audience an improv show that's not like anything they've seen before. It's funny, it's sad, it's romantic. I'm looking forward to seeing the faces of people as they hear Beth's voice through the walkie talkie for the first time, and I hope they get the same chills I got.
Graham Johnson, Improviser
Local Heroes is on Friday 13th July, 8pm. Doors 7.15pm. Tickets are £7 and can be bought HERE.