Day 26: Street Walker

SONY DSCSo tonight I did a show with my friends Dave and Derek (different Derek from other posts). Despite my plans to do a show at the Bar Below being thwarted by a cancellation, I was able to make last minute plans to perform at a place called the Lincoln Loft. The space is enormous. It’s literally an 8 person loft apartment with a gigantic open area where there is a mini-stage and chairs. Not just stand-alone chairs, but chairs that were connected together in a row (like you’d see in a college auditorium or movie theater). There were rows to the left of the stage and rows in front of the stage. Someone tonight referred to it as theater in the round. Also, they are move-able because they can’t drill them into the hardwood floor. We’ll get back to that later though. Trust me, it’s relevant.  I think the problem right off the bat (and this is my fault) is that we didn’t really have a form at all. We decided to do something different (as an experiment with my 31 days adventure) and take a suggestion from the audience and then create a form out of it. This quickly backfired as the first thing we did was go right into a scene. It was no different form whatsoever. We just went right into a montage and used the suggestion as motivation for that scene. That scene was at an airport and I got hassled by Dave (TSA agent) for looking suspicious yet Derek walked right on through. I said something to Dave about being fed up with this and that I was tired of getting sass from everyone. Derek transitioned into a new scene by bringing in crates full of sass. We then threw the sass around. It was a crazy, but fun idea. In this reality, sass (an attitude/emotion) came in crates and had to be tossed into the air. A few more scenes occurred (a poetry slam) and then I found myself seated in a chair in the audience while Dave tried to electrocute me. As an editing move, Derek ran at me to throw some sass in my face (callback to earlier sass scene). As he hit me he pushed me back and in the process pushed the chair back, which in-turn tipped the whole row of chairs back. Remember what I said earlier? I told you it would be relevant. Thank God for the people sitting in the row behind us because they were able to grab the row in time so we didn’t completely topple over. I could feel sincere panic by the audience as an actual accident almost occurred. My first emotion and thought was embarrassment. I quickly jumped up and apologized (within the scene) to the other people that were in the movie theater. We then marched out of the theater where I would justify all of the chaos by saying that we were all brothers who were stunt men and that we couldn’t go anywhere because we were just too rowdy.

Personally, I think a lot of good moves were made. There were transformational edits, characters, games, and call-backs. It wasn’t a terrible show, but it wasn’t the best.  I think we weren’t invested enough in the scenes. I found myself a few times thinking “what is going on here” and more importantly “well what now?” I did get to play a silly character that I was really happy about though. It got a good response because it was just stupid and frankly, sometimes stupid is funny. For example, Derek and Dave were beating me up because I didn’t “have the money”. We found out it was because I’m a degenerate gambler and gambled it away by betting on the colors of the stop-lights (specifically that one would turn orange). It was strange, but the premise (excessive gambling and owing debts) was still very much understandable and realistic. Rounders anyone? It turned out that the only way I could make the money back was by being a street walker. I know what you’re thinking, a prostitute? Hooker? No, I literally just walked the streets. We quickly cut to me walking up and down the street as people hollered at me. I would walk up, take my top hat off , extend it out for tips, and just keep walking. I informed Dave and Derek that I don’t do handsies pandsies, footsie wootsies and Derek quickly jumped on the game by supplying ones for elbows and knees. Dave would haggle me down to performing a kneesie (just kneeling on someone’s back) for Derek because it was his birthday. That scene was a lot of fun. This transitioned back to the air-port (CALL-BACK CITY AM I RIGHT!?) where Derek was down on the ground as Dave and I (TSA Agents) were beating him up while playing the classic good cop/bad cop routine.

In the end, I had fun. I know exactly what some of the things are that I needed to work on, but I also was satisfied with a lot of the moves I was making and the support I felt from my partners. Despite a low volume response from the audience, I was happy with the moves we made as improvisers.

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