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The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

The news site of Glenbrook South High School.

The Oracle

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Kaitlyn Jiang
Remarkable Rehearsal: During an Improvaganza! rehearsal, (left to right) freshman William Hanneman, junior Alek Troncoso, sophomore Bekah Vogt, and senior Antonio Torres act out an impromptu scene of “James and the Giant Peach”, courtesy of an audience suggestion.

During junior Alek Troncoso’s freshman year, Troncoso and his fellow castmates in “Improvaganza!” were instructed to act out the suggestion of “curly fries”. Troncoso and his castmates struggled for five minutes in front of an audience to act out curly fries. Today, Troncoso and his fellow castmates still laugh about the embarrassing incident.

The “curly fries incident” is a common occurrence in the South show “Improvaganza!”, a drama performance consisting of performers in teams playing pre-planned minigames where they must improvise, acting live without a script, Troncoso said. The cast of “Improvaganza!” is selected by Math Teacher Joe Karlovsky, who has been directing the group for the past six years, Karlovsky said. Unlike other drama performances at South, “Improvaganza!” utilizes improv to create an entirely original show on the spot, Troncoso said.

“There is no script, set, [or] story,” Troncoso said. “Every show is completely different. All the scenes are made up on the spot, so you could go to all three of the shows and [view] something completely different each time.”

Since the show is formulated live, “Improvaganza!” teaches cast members how to think on their feet, Vogt said.

“Trust your gut with what you are [going to] say,” Vogt said. “Trust your first instinct, then [the audience will] love it.”

The show is better catered to beginners compared to other productions at South, allowing students who are new to drama to learn improvisation, sophomore Charlie Chasen said.

“If you are interested in [“Improvaganza!”], you do not need any past experience,” Chasen said. “You will learn everything you need to know about improv, [even] if you are a beginner.”

Students involved in other theater programs can benefit from improvising, sophomore Gretchen Williamson said.

“[Improvisation] can improve acting skills and make [people] more comfortable on a stage, [performing] with an audience,” Williamson said.

Since “Improvaganza!”’s show is unscripted and student-run, it is very unpredictable; however, Karlovsky feels amazed watching the cast’s performance as they create a show live.

“It is not easy to put yourself out there, so the students [participating in “Improvaganza!”] are very admirable,” Karlovsky said. “The fact that there are many kids who come out to do [“Improvaganza!”] is amazing.”

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