Jim Gaffney is an improviser and stand-up comic in Denver. His intelligence and timing make him a joy to watch on stage, a joy to talk to in non-spotlight settings too, and a weird, weird interviewee. Basically, for the whole interview, I felt like someone who was on the outside of what I thought were inside jokes. Jim Gaffney’s intelligence and dry humor have really brought me down a peg or two, and I might have to reconsider interviewing smart people from now. Oh, but wait! Mr. Gaffney did say one unintelligent thing: he’s not vegan!
Meet Jim Gaffney. Continue reading
When I first became a student of improv, one of my first teachers was Cheri Davidson. She was very motivating and encouraging, and she was always nice to me despite my annoying impulse to yuk it up while she was trying to be serious (thank goodness I don’t do that anymore, eh?). In addition to being a great improv teacher and doer, Cheri is one of the most interesting and surprising people I know. She raises money for charity, she plays music, she sings, she goes to school and she does exotic karate-esque activities I don’t even know the name of. Also, she’s probably going to punch me for calling the thing “karate-esque,” because it’s probably not like karate at all. Wax on, wax off.
Meet Cheri Davidson. Continue reading
Jaysen Cryer is a talented actor and improviser. Jaysen Cryer lives his life the way he wants. Jaysen Cryer came to the U.S. with only the shirt on his back. I mean, he had a bunch of other belongings, but the only thing on his back was his shirt. He’s funny, super smart, thoughtful and thought-full, and he has a British accent, ladies.
Note: Please read in British accent, ladies (and gentlemen).
Meet Jaysen Cryer. Continue reading
In my first and only sketch show in Denver, I met some really talented people. I also met Erin Brogan. Buuuurn. But seriously. Erin, known to most as Brogan, wrote a number of sketches in the show, and I was seriously impressed by her work. Funny, relevant, well structured, great details. It was a puh-leasure to say out loud the words she put on paper. My favorite of all was a sketch she wrote in which Lil’ John was my neighbor, and he was playing his music too loud. We kept asking him to please turn it down, and he kept responding with, “Turn down for what?!” Amazing. I thought when I interviewed Brogan about her non-veganism, she’d respond with, “Go vegan for what?!” But she didn’t. Because she had way funnier answers.
Meet Brogan! Continue reading
When I participated earlier this year in the Denver’s Next Improv Star competition, I got to perform with incredibly talented improvisers, including my fellow competitors and special guests from all over the country. One of those special guests (perhaps the most special, in my opinion) was Kat Bond, who had improvised in Denver and since moved to Chicago. She returned to Denver to bring her musical improv expertise (and judgment) as a judge for the competition – which means, yes, I got to sing an improvised song with her. She. Was. Amazing. And intimidating. I had to interview her. Not only because she’s so awesome and fun, but because I needed to even things out by intimidating her about vegetables. Small victories matter, folks.
Meet Kat Bond!
One time in St. Louis, Joshua Slobe did stand-up with me. And another time, he came to Denver and did stand-up but I wasn’t able to join him. And then this other time – okay, a thousand times – he entertained me online so my gord wouldn’t be bored. I have entertained Josh once or twice in his time of need, but never will I be able to repay his selfless and important acts of kindness. We talk about improv, stand-up and annoying restaurant staff at airports. Humble, funny, thoughtful and weird, it doesn’t get better than Josh Slobe.
But Josh Slobe could get better. By going vegan.
Meet Josh Slobe. Continue reading
I met today’s interviewee in an improv class, and I knew upon meeting her that we’d be friends. She was interested in non-profits and social justice issues and – duh – improv. I knew from the start that Brenda was interesting and funny, and she just kept getting more interesting and funnier from then on. She’s had really neat jobs, was on a game show, has had many celebrity encounters, does stand-up comedy, aaaaand she’s really nice, supportive and down-to-earth! Oh, did I mention she’s into animal rescue?! Heck, she’s even an almost-vegetarian!
But not quite.
Meet Brenda Stewart. Continue reading
I met this week’s interviewee at the most recent Great Debate, hosted by Denver’s Buntport Theater. Adam Mordecai was one of three comedic geniuses on my team, debating (successfully) why mermaids are better than Red Lobster. Adam’s hilarious speech brought Red Lobster down a peg or two – or three – with its detailed accounts of the restaurant’s nutrition (or, can you call it that?) information. Salt, salt and more salt. An avid hater of Red Lobster, my heart was won over. Doubly so when Adam threw in some feminist rants!
But then I discovered that this seemingly intelligent person, with whom I was about to become friends, eats animals. Animals! Strike one. Then the interview you’ll read below revealed his poor pet ownership. Strikes two and three. I guess I could have titled this blog post “Potential Friendship Ruined Before it Began.” Or “Don’t Read This: It’ll Just Make You Sad.” (Just kidding, Adam, please be my friend and try tofu again because I asked nicely in the future when we make our spouses date us together!)
Meet Adam Mordecai. Continue reading
Noble is defined as “having or showing fine personal qualities or high moral principles and ideals” (Thanks, Google). So, it’s likely that Ben Noble’s ancestors were vegan. That begs the question, why isn’t he? Maybe he’s rebelling, trying to find his own identity. But if that’s the case, why the hipster glasses and plaid shirts just like every other 20-something improviser wears?
Let’s face it: Ben Noble is an enigma. One day he’s in level one at The Improv Shop, and you turn around to find him coaching an independent team. One day he’s acting really snobby, and the next he’s asking you for your opinion on his new blog. I can’t keep up. Maybe you’ll have better luck understanding this mystery man, and why he’s not vegan.
Meet Ben Noble. Continue reading
Alicia Wheelock does it all, and then some. She improvises, she writes, she directs, she teaches. If it’s a fun and quality theater project, there’s a good chance she’s involved – and if she’s not, it might be because there are sexist, racist or otherwise bigoted tones in the piece, which Alicia does not approve of because she’s a caring, knowledgeable, compassionate advocate for many social issues as well! She’s an all-around fun and amazing person, and I consider myself lucky to know her and have worked on projects with her. Alicia would be the perfect woman. If only she were vegan.
Meet Alicia Wheelock. Continue reading