Since March 2, late Thursday nights at The Improv Centre on Granville Island are ‘so lit.’ #NoFilter, Vancouver TheatreSports’ newest show, uses the spontaneity of improv comedy to delve into our fleeting, over-shared digital world. From Snapchat to Instagram, Weibo to Facebook and everything in between, #NoFilter finds the fun and funny in how much we share about ourselves with nearly total strangers.This is a very interactive show, where live-stream social media (projected on the theatre’s giant screen) will be used along with audience suggestions (verbal, texted or tweeted) to drive the action.
The first half of the show features a series of short scenes. For instance, the Facebook posts of either the players on-stage or audience members who have volunteered will form the dialogue of a scene. The actual tweets of celebrities chosen by the audience could be used the same way. Another scene may feature the improvisers scrolling through an Instagram feed to use as the basis of an improvised on-the-spot ‘TED-like Talk’ or they could ‘dub’ a YouTube video with their own dialogue. Members of the audience may be asked to play the role of Trolls or Hecklers and ‘comment’ on the scene as it unfolds. The on-stage improvisers could post a question on Ask.Fm, such as “What should we do a scene about?” and use the Internet’s response as inspiration.
The second half of the show transitions into long form improv where the players have the opportunity to really explore a platform through improvised comedy. How about a mini-movie based on the ‘I Saw You’ section of Craigslist? Or an improvised YouTube montage built from tweets submitted by the audience – when a new tweet pops up on the screen, it determines the next action in the scene. Or, the improvisers could create a fictional social media personality and, using audience suggestions, explore the celebrity’s world through how they present themselves on the various platforms.
Just like a Snapchat video or Instagram Story, improvised comedy is ephemeral – no two performances can ever be the same. What is consistent is that each performance will be ‘so fire’ – moving patrons to exclaim ‘Yaaaaaas!’
#NoFilter plays every Thursday evening at 9:15 pm at The Improv Centre, 1502 Duranleau Street on Granville Island. It replaces OK Tinder which has moved from Thursday nights to the 11:15 pm time slot on Fridays and Saturdays. Show details and tickets vtsl.com.