We’re happy to introduce the troupes in the 7th Big Sexy with a Getting to Know series! Read about troupe iScream Sandwich below and see them at Margo Jones on Saturday June 27th at 7pm!
Tell us about your troupe name. How did you develop your format?
We started out as students in Tom Booker’s Sunday class that he taught in a comedy club in downtown Austin before The Institution Theater was a reality. We all had experience from other theater’s across the country learning the Harold format and thought it was time that Austin had a Harold troupe, when no one else in Austin was teaching and/or performing the Harold. We toyed with lots of names, almost stressing about it, we had to keep reminding ourselves to take the pressure off, our name would reveal itself when it was ready. Then one day Marv suggested, “why not something fun like Ice Cream Sandwich” and it just clicked, everyone was excited about the name, Heidi threw out “Yes, and what if we spell it like this: iScream Sandwich” is stuck and now we have been the longest running Harold Troupe in Austin!
What is one of your favorite improv moments?
They say that when you perform the Harold format, in the 3rd act when you get all the story lines and characters to come back together for the final scene and it wraps up the show with a nice button – then Harold is in the room! Those are the moments when the show is magical and you get off stage feeling that awesome performance high. Those are our favorite improv moments, but even if we don’t see that happen every show – we are a great group of friends that love to make each other laugh, so when we step out on stage, the only goal is to have fun with each other, when that is obvious to the audience they can’t help but have fun with us. That and one time we had an article written about us that was titled, “iScream Sandwich made me love improv!” That’s always nice to hear 🙂
How do you guys prepare for a show? Any fun warm-ups or rituals?
We warm up like most any group before a show to get our creative juices flowing and get our energy up – but then we always get connected by huddling in a circle and playing the alphabet game (get from a-z one person at a time, with out having two people say it at the same time or else we have to start over…we rarely have to start over). Then just before we take a stage we all take a moment to make eye contact with each other one at a time and say, “I trust you” It really makes us feel connected and supported when we get out there in front of an audience!
What do you like to do outside of improv?
We all have our own separate busy lives, from full time jobs, graduate school, other troupes we perform with, creating podcasts, writing and pitching scripts, performing scripted theater, designing new game apps, and generally just being awesome. As a group we like to get together for bonding, social activities, usually sharing a meal and gossiping, but we also love a good pool party or the occasional trip to Hawaii 😛 (last summer we got to perform at Improvaganza the Hawaiian Improv festival). But mostly we just love to crack each other up – this is a fun group of people that just loves to laugh out loud!