Playing off ideas and personal experiences from both audience and cast members, the Mountain Improv Alliance comedy troupe demonstrate the quirkiness and hilarity that can manifest from even the simplest experiences in our lives.
“In the past we’ve done it where sometimes [audience members] just give us one word and we ride off that to get a scene," said cast member of Liam Brett with MIA. "Other times they’ll tell us a personal experience they’ve had in the Bow Valley, or something funny that happened to them recently, and it’s a really easy way to jumpstart a couple scenes."
Whose Wine is it Anyway is divided into two parts. During the first half of the show, through games and suggestions from the audience, the improv group creates multiple short-form scenes.
“Once we get going with one-based scenes, it’s very easy to take those characters and to take those moments into various other scenes and see how long we could run with an idea because that’s really what the joy of improv is – running with something so simple and making it so large, something able to be performed,’ Brett said.
From those short and sweet scenes, the improv actors carry over those characters into the second act which takes form in a longer comedic dinner party performance. Brett, as one of the newest cast members of Mountain Improv Alliance, learnt that with comedy improv it’s all about confidence.
“What really ruins improv, or what really makes it unfunny to an audience member or a fellow cast member, is if you’re doubting yourself or if you’re worried about what you’re going to say. Just being able to let go of that little voice in my head that’s telling me not to say something has been really enlightening in both theatre and life to be able to just go with the flow and know that whatever I’ll say or whatever I do will mostly work out. It’s been really good for my confidence I think,” said Brett.
For people out in the community who are looking to sharpen their comedic skills, the Mountain Improv Alliance invites anyone to attend its improv sessions that happen every Wednesday at the Canmore Legion beginning at 7 p.m.
“Either if you want to watch, or if you want to join in, and it’s always nice to have new people. If anyone is reading or hearing this and wants to join, I would let them know that I was just as nervous to join and it’s been an amazing experience,” said Brett.
On Sunday (Sept. 8) from 7:30 p.m. at artsPlace, audiences can experience a quirky live comedy performance with Mountain Improv Alliance’s Whose Wine is it Anyway?