One of my deepest passions is my work in the improvisational theatre, specifically improv comedy. I’ve been doing improv since 1991, first with Yale University’s Just Add Water, then independently as stand-up comedy and improv in Pittsburgh and New York City. While I was in Boston, I chiefly used improv as a unifying technique for theatre work (GREAT for auditions and group building, guys…), but didn’t perform with any regularity other than the occasional jam and/or open mic night.
In Tokyo I performed with the Tokyo Comedy Store, who has regular performances every 4th Thursday of the month at Bar, Isn’t It in Roppongi, Tokyo. They also offer a great weekly “class” every Wednesday night. Until personal issues broke us up, I enjoyedperforming with a little group, The 32 Oba-sans (literally, “The 32 annoyingly old female biddies”). Sadly, I haven’t performed publicly in about a year, though I still use improv in team-building exercises and private entertainment. I’d like to change that soon.
Previously in New York City, I worked with some great groups, like The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, YesAnd (most recently at the YesAnd First Annual Improv Comedy Festival in New York City — a smash success!), and other assorted groups yet to be named or credited here. My most exciting work was with a fantastic known as
Yellow Man Group, a 4-person ensemble from Tokyo who is able to “yesand” and commit to characters like I’ve never seen before.
I highly recommend sponsoring your local improv and comedy shops (especially if you live in Tokyo!) Stop by for a nice cheap evening of fun (Y1000 including one free drink here in Tokyo — cheap plug), a few drinks, and even get up on stage if you feel prepared. Improv is all about connecting across a common experience . . . and Yellow Man Group has shown me that this is possible, even across vastly different cultures. Support us, and we will continue to “…give you lifelong enjoyment and service.”
Photos of my work in Tokyo are now online.