Every once in a while I forget I’m not in Georgia and that I live in a city that can support a huge improv festival and still have sellout shows for other comedy events. Ain’t New York grand?
I couldn’t commit to a weekend pass to Del, but I did check out Neutrino at the PIT, an improv-film hybrid that’s spectacularly innovative and impressive. The group creates scenes on the streets of New York on the fly using audience suggestions and items. The scenes are filmed and rushed back to the stage to be organized as a cinematic Harold.
I enjoyed it once before but was a little curious if my good memories of the show were simply due to the luck of having an audience member supply the object-requesting improvisers with lube and cock ring. The subsequent scenes of one player attempting to get the other to out himself by having local businesses give him the items were hysterical. But with such a great coincidence how could they not make a great scene. How good were they?
I needn’t have worried, although this time an audience member did supply a mink scrunchy but admonished Neutrino member Bob Wiltfong that it was not a cock ring. (Either we saw the same show or Mr. Wiltfong loves to turn every object he receives into a cock ring.) Naturally the mink scrunchy was a cock ring for the rest of the scenes.
The group uses the local enviornment well, enlisting clerks and waiters from local businesses as players with hysterical results. The mink now-sex-toy turned out to be an cursed item for sale at the neighboring porn shop and the shopkeeper a manically laughing demon. All of the editing is done on the fly with any cutting back and forth from different setups, meaning the improvisers have to stop one part of the scene, run to a new position and do the next segment and then return exactly in position from the first scene. It was amazingly seamless and used with great effect with a scene where a woman imagines the amorous places her date might go. The threads are even attempted to be brought together in a fulfilling way, with a side player in one series of scenes commenting on another.
It’s an amazing high-wire act, even more so that “regular” improv because of the technical aspects. It’s amazing and well worth seeing even if your performance doesn’t include a scene with a cock ring. Check it out.