Improv for Kids
Presented by: The Improvisors
Circa Theatre, 11th Jul 2020
Reviewed by: Jo Lucre
With lead performers Ian Harcourt, Fingal Pollock, and Ben Zolno, Improv for Kids offers an environment where anything feels possible. “We will need your help to make it happen,” says Ian. And make it happen, they do! Improv for Kids is a show that relies equally on its young audience as it does its performers. Kids are invited to participate in an immersive and collaborative approach to storytelling, resulting in wonderful off-the-cuff performances.
The scene is set straight away and is almost too good to be true; you can yell your ideas out from where you sit, you do not need to put your hand up, and if your grownup tells you to “shush”, then for the next hour only, you have licence to say “shush” back. Carte blanche to be authors of their own domain is an opportunity not to be missed and hilarious performances about green bananas, ghost bats, and hot unicorns ensue. Improv for Kids is improvisation at its best, where kids become the exhibits, the sound engineers, and the collective authors of the show.
Lighting (Darren Woods) and music (Cam Crawford) provide just the right amount of dramatic effect to a fast-paced show.
There is no pressure for the kids to join in and this seems to have the opposite effect, with the young audience consistently engaged and enthusiastic participants. The real surprise is the way the performers are able to work so creatively and intuitively with each other using the directives and ideas hollered right, left, and centre from eager children. Cleverly timed and never missing a beat, you get the feeling The Improvisors have been doing this for some time.
There are no bored children here staring mindlessly at a screen; they are part of the action and it’s refreshing to enjoy something unscripted and organic with lots of laughter and entertainment.
What a fun hour to be had. Something special for the kids these holidays, something different, each and every time.