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February 24, 2014

College Comedy Festival!

A little bit of uncertainty going on in the short form round...oops

A little bit of uncertainty going on in the short form round…oops

Confession: I’m a competitive gal. I’m the most competitive gal. I love competitions. Sometimes I make up competitions with people and I don’t tell them just so I can have a little bit more competition in my day.

But don’t worry -  it’s totally healthy.

This weekend I had the amazing opportunity to go to Boston with the Peapod Squad to compete in Improv Boston’s College Comedy Festival. It was such an incredible time; I laughed so hard I thought my brain was going to explode, I met hilarious and wonderful new, people, and I learned a heck of a lot of stuff about improv. The competition lasted for three days, and it consisted of a short form round (fun little games, think Who’s Line is it Anyway?), a long form round (basically meaning a continuous stretch of improv that doesn’t involve playing games), a line game round (line games are literally games where you deliver one-liners. Puns. So many puns), and a totally terrifying round where you don’t know the rules until you’re standing on stage in front of an audience. When we weren’t performing, we were hanging out with other teams, attending workshops, or stuffing food into our faces very quickly.

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I was taken by surprise by how not affected by the competition aspect of the festival I was. For the first time ever, I was at a competition and not completely focused on taking home a trophy. Weird, right? The whole weekend, I was so caught up in having a blast improvising and spending time with five of my closest friends in Boston that I hardly felt like I was at a competition at all.

On Saturday, Improv Boston gave all the teams at the festival the opportunity to attend two workshops. Normally, I’m really against stuff like that; they usually end up being two hours of fruity acting exercises that are more ridiculous than they are helpful. I attended a workshop on building characters, and another about strengthening physicality, and they both had a teensy bit of fruity actor exercises (now everyone close your eyes and walk around the room…now think of a character that is inspired by a piece of food…now slowly become that character, but only at a level five), but overall, I found myself really absorbed in some of the stuff I would normally not be into. Both of my workshops showed me new things and perspectives about skills that I had previously considered myself to be pretty knowledgeable about.

In the end, the Peapod Squad finished in fifth place out of fourteen. It wasn’t first place, but hey, it certainly isn’t last. I came home with knowledge, hilarious memories, and a great big smile on my face, which I would take any day over a giant trophy.

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