Posts tagged solo improv show

Downright Upright is an improv blog by LA-based improviser, Sean London. Its focus is unabashedly UCB-centric, and that’s cool, because it’s fun to get an insider’s perspective on that scene.

London posts an interesting mix of personal “ramblings,” interviews and opinions, as well as great video content. I especially liked his review of a solo Jason Mantzoukas show. Already something of a legend in the States, Mantzoukas is known for pushing the boundaries of improv – and his audience – to the limits.

When he’s not busy blogging, you can catch London performing with Soulmates (below).

Photo © Will Reese

Deepak Chopra says “Run towards your fears.” It’s great advice (although I still haven’t figured out how to do it with my fear of traffic).

Deepak would no doubt give a big thumbs up to Todd Charron for his Follow Your Fear Day.

Todd started the project after taking a class on how to do a solo improv show. He was totally pscyhed and determined to do one…but somehow never did.

A couple of years passed, then one day he sat down and had a little talk with himself.

Note: The following conversation is a reconstruction. None of these things may have actually occurred, except in the writer’s head.

Todd’s Brain: I’m bored.

Todd’s Heart: Me too. You know what’d be fun? To do a solo improv show. Remember that cours–

Todd’s Brain: Let’s see what’s on OLN.

(clicks converter)

Todd’s Heart: Did you hear me? I said I wanna do a s–

Todd’s Brain: Shut yer pie hole! I’m trying to watch this Grey Power commercial.

Todd’s Heart: (mutters) You mean you’re afraid.

Todd’s Brain: WHAT did you say?

Todd’s Heart: Nothin’

Todd’s Brain: No, no. You said something, Heart. Mister Passionate. Mister “I wanna follow my dreams!” Mister All Talk And No Action.


Todd’s Brain: HUH?


Todd’s Brain: Thought so.

(clicks converter)

Todd’s Brain: Fuck! Not Diners, Drive-ins And Dives again…

Todd’s Stomach: What’s wrong with Diners, Drive-ins And Dives?

Todd’s Brain: Shuddup!

Todd’s Heart: (quietly) Fuck you.

Todd’s Brain: What did you s–

Todd’s Heart: I said FUCK YOU. Fuck you, fear! Fuck you, Mister “What if I take a chance and fail?” Mister “I might not be a superstar the first time I do something, so I’m not even gonna try.” Mister I’m Afraid, So I’ll Act Like I Just Don’t Care.


Todd’s Heart: Truth hurts, huh? Well you know what hurts more? Burying your dreams under a pile of safe. I’m gonna do a solo improv show, I don’t care how terrified I get. No one ever died of being scared. Later, Brain.

(walks away)

Todd’s Brain: Kid’s got balls. (sighs) Wish I had balls.

Todd’s Stomach: (growl)

On June 15th, Todd will face his fears and perform an improvised one-man show at Unit 102 Theatre, directed by the amazing Carmine Lucarelli. Come watch, but even if you can’t, commit to facing a fear of your own.