Review: Birmingham Improv Festival opening night at Blue Orange Theatre

by Dave Massey twitter.com/BrumHour

Birmingham Improv Festival opening night at Blue Orange Theatre

“22 Shows, 9 Days, 2 Venues, No Script!” Yes, Birmingham’s Improv Festival is back until 3rd November and bigger than ever. I was invited to check out the opening night at The Blue Orange Theatre.

Following an introduction from Jon Trevor, festival organiser we were treated to 30 minutes of fun from Jumprov, the UK’s first BAME improv comedy group. BAME stands for Black, Asian and Minority ethnic and this group, lead by Sunny Dhap is mainly from Birmingham. From picking accents to choosing locations, the audience is invited to help with the set-up of situations, personality traits. Jumprov is a warm friendly group that tackle issues in a soft, yet direct, manner.

After a break the second show is Pilot Season: The Next Big Thing, from the Closer Each Day Company. Given the theme of “Harbour” as a location this improv company present a pilot for a tv show. Frothy and soapy their one hour show gave us some real characters mixed with outlandish situations. In their native Bristol they have the honour of the longest running ongoing improv narrative in the world!

Birmingham Improv Festival Opening
Birmingham Improv Festival Opening

I really like improv and seeings how people react in and both of these groups demonstrate passion for the skill of turning situations on their head and bringing out the natural humour to be found.

With another eight days of shows to go, other shows to keep an eye out for include Box of Frogs (27th October), Spontaneous Potter (27th October), Impromptu Shakespeare (28th October) Fat Penguin and Watch this (29th October), Lovehard (30th October), Foghorn Unscripted (31st October), Improvised Star Wars (1st November), Austentatious! (2nd November) and Showstopper! (3rd November).

Check out the Birmingham Improv Festival website for more details about booking tickets. birminghamimprovfestival.com


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