Comedy Week: Improv

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S1: The following recording may contain explicit language I can’t get more explicit than May.

S2: Literacy IT MAY It’s Tuesday September 17th 2019 from Slate’s The Gist. I’m Mike Pesca and this right now you’re in the middle of Comedy Week day two by the end of this will be 40 percent through the funny is kind of thrilling kind of sad. Today’s episode is a discussion of improper whereas my spellcheck wants to say him.

S1: Improv is not just your roommates show that she’d love you to come to and also maybe go buy a drink. Improv is changing the world of comedy. But first I want to bring you a brief excerpt from the live show that we did last night the scene was the Bell House in Brooklyn the third holiest site in comedy podcasting Hari Kondabolu Marina Franklin and Khalid rock Mohn performed sets and we all sat down and we talk things out now in the news as I know you know is the story of Shane Gillis the stand up who was invited then pretty quickly disinvited to join the cast of Saturday Night Live. First a year old clip of Gillis doing a stereotypical Asian accent and using the word I’m going to say it now it’s a slur the word chink that surfaced and then after a couple of days many more similar not even going to say performances but him hanging out with other comedy minded individuals on podcasts and him engaging in that same slur and those same kind of quote unquote jokes over and over. They surfaced. So this panel before me they’re all stand up comics I want to know what they thought about it. On the one hand comedians are artists losing jobs over even failed jokes can’t be good for the profession or even the culture. I would say on the other hand these transgressions were pretty blatant and not on stage as attempted jokes just more like things you shouldn’t say because they’re actually offensive. You know let’s consider that. I started with Khalid ruckman and asked him for his take.

S3: I mean I listen to the clips of what he said. I’ve heard him on other podcasts and I listen to and I think the mistake he made was obviously seeing a lot of horrible stuff.

S4: What was the biggest mistake the billboard racist was a mistake. That was the big mistake. But the other big mistake I just kind of identify was like it seemed like he was treating his podcast like it was a group chat. And like a private thing we could just like say like crazy stuff to his friends back home in Pennsylvania. But it’s like actually people recording and listening to it. I’m not that’s not shot which disappears in like Yeah that was the vibe that I got from my.

S5: Those clips at least. Laurie Kilmartin wrote a tweet area like not paraphrase just how it’s not a smart career move to treat your let your career like you’re never going to be famous. You can’t just go about it thinking it’s always going to be in a void. No one’s ever going to see it. Also it wasn’t much of an excavation do you I mean like he was saying that stuff a month ago. Yeah. It wasn’t like it was years and years ago. This is the same. He was probably in the middle of auditioning when he said it like wasn’t that long.

S6: It was a difficult one though because I do know Shane I like Shane a lot.

S7: I’ve had moments with Shane run like I don’t think he knows. He just said the wrong thing.

S6: But I’ve had that with a lot of white guys in comedy. He’s not the only one out there.

S7: And here’s the thing is like he’s a young comic you know and young comics do make very horrible mistakes and now they’re on podcast. And so yeah it made sense that that happened. But I will say it’s very difficult to even talk about Shane like this because I do feel like the responsibility to protect comics I. Will not trash another comic because I know I know I am not perfect in any way.

S6: I’ve never said anything. I don’t think. That was horribly racist. You know but you never know when you offend someone what offends one person may not offend another. Now obviously what he said.

S7: I think that’s obviously offensive.

S6: But if you go digging in my podcast I mean you know there may be something I said that did that makes a lot of people it’s you know it’s it’s. And I’m torn Yai at all. That’s the thing that you don’t hear comics saying when they address a comic that is offensive is that we’re also very torn by it because you know I know how my soul is I know how I feel about things.

S3: But as a comic a lot of times I see some real fucked up shit and we all realize we could say the whole thing on a podcast or dislike on a video.

S4: I mean we haven’t learned about it.

S5: I just feel like there’s a difference between us misstep being taking an approach making a mistake and using racial slurs against HB repeatedly over the course of years and as recent as a couple of months ago.

S8: Like to me you know Anderson that he’s a young comic but that gives them less of a pass. I just says he knows how things work and he knows what’s happened in the past and he knows how things go back. He’s aware of it and yet he’s either so oblivious or so privileged he doesn’t realize Oh I probably shouldn’t say this at the bare minimum for self-preservation.

S9: Mm hmm mm hmm.

S8: And I love comedy. It’s not like I don’t love comics.

S10: Well no I know. But it was like there are these competing tensions right. One tension is what you just articulated that many of these comments weren’t really in the subject in the pursuit of humor per say there weren’t reversals putting the joke on him. They were just trying to maybe get a laugh of the three guys. He was joking with based on using an F ethnic slurs. Terrible. On the other hand this competing tension is you guys are all comics. It’s an art form. People you can’t be held to the standard of a polish. You shouldn’t be held to the standard for your sake in the art form sake to the standard of never making a mistake and never miss should happen. So it is a conundrum.

S8: I figured the dynamic record is different though than a singular mistake of it keeps happening over and over again in a comedy club band. It’s like at a certain point I feel like I hate when people dig through tweets and find the two things and the person is a much different person than seven years ago. Right now I feel like we’ll come on like that. We’re all trying to navigate a space where we put our thoughts online and there’s certainly things in my old notebooks from when I was 18 that I don’t want people to read you know and now that same thing that was in my notebook at 18 is on the Internet which is unfortunate. So that’s so I sympathize with that but that’s different than saying things verbally being banned from a comedy club getting you know saying slurs like it wasn’t even like I’m doing. I’m trying to do a clever spin on a thing right. Just saying like he called what he called Andrew Yang a Jew and then the slur for Chinese people. I mean like I like maybe I don’t get the joke but that seems pretty.

S6: I don’t think it was a joke. I think that’s the problem.

S7: You know it was a parody can’t defend Joe Wright but that it was a podcast like you said and you know what we saw was someone being very comfortable with saying those things and you know no one’s fooled by that moment like no but we can all see it and recognize what that was. The problem that I I really have is that Saturday Night Live still fights for getting a white guy in there yeah. And yet when you see that you go.

S11: So there was nothing in his performance that showed you that was who he was.

S10: But I’m starting to feel like no one vets anything that’s true. Seriously dude I put this to you Sarah Palin. You don’t say. Life is hard. And there’s like three of his last five appearances have this sort of material on a podcast.

S3: Yeah I don’t think there’s any vetting that goes on in show business.

S12: I mean there is some vetting like historically they vet people of color. And then there’s absolutely there’s there’s that kind of low level like we’re not even in the in the mix like we were talking I was backstage like we know so many people of color. So many women like yeah. I mean they just so hard to talk about comics I know but it is it’s like we know at least 10 really funny people who of color.

S6: You know. Not that it necessarily has to be but it should.

S12: That they could have looked at who definitely haven’t said racial slurs in the last two years. Yes.

S1: The form of comedy that has changed the most since I’ve been paying attention is proper based mime comedy out of Switzerland. Specifically Moomin chance. No it’s not. I’m lying. It’s improv but improv has gone from theater games of freeze to a comedy form with hundreds of thousands of practitioners. I think that’s safe to say. It has become the training ground. The pipeline if you will for the funniest people out there in movies TV and fast food commercials here on the line joining me is T.J. jagged ski a Chicago based in Provo who with his partner Dave Pesce squeezy formed perhaps the most legendary and respected improv team in all the land. In 1998 teaches improv team at I O in Chicago was considered by many the greatest ever assembled. It had him John Lutz who was Lutz on 30 Rock. Like Barron Holtz Jason Sudeikis and Peter Grosz from Veep with whom T.J. recorded I know hundreds of Sonic commercials over the years yes. T.J. is the sonic guy also with me on line is Amber Nash of Atlanta. If her voice sounds familiar she is Pam on Archer and right next to me is UCB Upright Citizen brigade improper Zach Cherry. You may have seen him selling a hot dog and yelling at Spiderman recently. If you saw him you would know him because when he walked into the office three people said I know that guy love that guy and only two of those people were related to Zach.

S13: So T.J. let’s start off with you among our three here you’ve been doing it the longest and you’ve been Chicago based for what most or all of your career my entire career has been based in Chicago.

S14: Yes.

S15: And your career trajectory shows it. Yes straight downward. Yes it’s flat or or down.

S13: Yeah right into right into Lake Michigan. But improv is is known as being Chicago if not based art form. But that’s the real city of improv. So I mean Zach and Amber. They improvise in other cities. But what about Chicago has I don’t know informed your improv practice over the years.

S14: I was. It’s always been a great place to fail. And with that I’m not actually getting like that even though a lot of the the talent that may go on to other stardom came from here. Those things usually happened on one of the coasts. And so this was a great place to just kind of do it do it right do it wrong do it for no other reason than just for the joy of doing it and just to try and get your reps and get and get better.

S13: Amber what’s Atlanta like as an improved city and how long you’ve been doing it.

S16: L.A. is kind of like that too I think because we’re not New York or L.A. there’s a there’s a little bit more freedom just kind of do whatever we want.

S17: I’ve been improvising since nineteen eight maybe ninety.

S16: And we come from a different style of improv. That is Canadian. It’s a theater sports which is kind of developed in Calgary and has moved throughout Canada and then down into Atlanta Georgia. Wow.

S18: Classic trajectory. Right. And Zach you’re a New York guy a Brooklyn guy.

S19: Yes. I would say York is also a great place to fail doing improv just costs more to do it and costs more to do it and you just have to go do it in a basement of a show that no one knows about and then you can fail spectacularly. And it’s it is a good way to you know just get better at it. When did you start. I started in New York in 2011 was UCB the big game in town the only game in town. How would you think about it. You know I think it was a big game in town. I also came at. I moved here almost specifically to start taking classes at UCB because a friend of mine in college who was an improviser had moved to New York and he was taking classes at UCB and he would come back and like teach us things and he would show us the ask cat DVD. So for me it was like the only game in town.

S20: But once I got here I learned about other places to perform but that was kind of always my goal coming here it seems as an outsider it does seem to me that something like stand up comedy is a little scarier and it’s more of the Wild West but there is perhaps more of a meritocratic part of it. You don’t have to rely on anyone else saying that you’re good enough except for the audience but with improv. I don’t know is that a good thing or a bad thing that you have so much structure what do you think that.

S19: I think it was good for me because I am a scaredy cat and like when I first moved to York I tried Santa a couple of times but it was very much a solo thing and it was also like you know there was I mean I I’m used to like going into a classroom and meeting people that way. So I was very comfortable with that like tempo system. So it worked for me but I don’t know if it’s better in terms of you know the meritocracy aspect of it. But I know that it worked for me.

S20: Are there any flaws with the way that UCB does it or whether intentionally or just how it’s happened to play out that this is the structure.

S19: I do think especially now with so many students that like the people who make the decisions about who to put on teams they can only know so many people so they know their students or they know the people they’ve seen on shows. So I do think it’s possible that there are tons of like super talented people who might not get the changes that they think they deserve or that they want. At the times that they want them. So I do think that is a little bit of a downside just because there’s so many people doing it right now.

S13: Now you always hear stories about how Ballou she or Chris Farley immediately graduated from Second City. He was that brilliant. I don’t know T.J. if something like that is possible or works in with the economic structure of a place like that these days.

S14: Yeah I would say you know it’s maybe maybe due to their brilliance they were they were more able to stick out but I think there were a lot fewer fish in the pond than. And and sometimes that also might make a great performer. That doesn’t always make for a great improviser that’s a big part of part of the way to I guess be recognized individually is to go out and and kind of be recognized individually where we’re we’re taught as as improvisers more often to like make the other guy look good. And

S21: so sometimes the the best improviser onstage is the person you might notice the least because he’s doing everything how he’s supposed to.

S20: So this is the main place I wanted to take this and it’s just based on an observation of mine which is that over the last I don’t know 15 years comedy itself has become less cutting and less put down humor and in fact the major form used to be slobs versus snobs. But notice the verb in there versus. And now it’s become a lot more collaborative. And I can’t help but noticing this exactly tracks with the rise of improv and if you look at Tina Fey you come from an improv background and the kind of vibe she seems to have instilled or installed at Saturday Night Live versus those that came before it seems stark to me but is that a fair observation and do you see this showing up in other areas in comedy. Zach what do you think.

S19: I don’t I don’t know if it necessarily comes from the resident because I just I’ve seen plenty of like cutting improv shows that are cutting both. I don’t know on on broader issues but then also just like where the characters are mean. But I do think I do think in terms of the collaborative maybe behind the scenes elements there might be something there but I don’t know how it’s affected sort of what we see in the comedy T.J. what you think.

S14: Yeah it potentially cause another another one of those folks who you know came through I O in Second City here what a big part in shaping the comedy of the last 20 years or whatever is Adam McKay who you know certainly I could see you know if you’re if you’re in a directorial position and you can make this combat it over you can make this cooperative.

S21: I could see him wanting to lean towards like why don’t we make this cooperatively funny. It’s it’s there’s more places you can go with a yes then you can go with a no. So if if you know the folks who were framing or helping to determine the comedy of the you know early 21st century we’re trained in a form that said you know look for ways to say yes I could see that having you know a pervasive flavor as far as what was being turned into product.

S1: Yeah. And in fact the McKay type comedies you know anchorman is built on getting letting Funny People improvise and we’ll do ten different takes so many that we can essentially release two movies with entirely different jokes which is something that riles and that’s exactly based on improv Yeah.

S14: And then and then the people you know he was choosing to do that. People like Will and Kirchner and Mr. Corral you know are all white guys but also where we’re you know pretty pretty darn good when they improvised on.

S21: I’m saying you know finding ways to be to you know to be positive to make affirmative choices rather than destructive choices.

S16: Yeah I think people are just generally trying to be more responsible whereas that wasn’t something that was necessarily put at the feet of people that had comedy before you know and now it’s kind of like it’s all of our responsibility to be better and make better choices and show audiences better ways I think is kind of been a thing that I know that I’ve seen in Atlanta for sure and maybe in a way Amber Like what.

S14: What’s more daring now is to be kind. That’s right. I think when we first learn these like man it’s daring to go out there and try and be raw and destructive and you know and you know bring bring whatever this person down bring this structure down. It may just be more daring to be vulnerable and kind. Now than Ryan it used to be.

S22: That’s a wonderful observation in terms of writing either writer’s rooms that are writing sitcoms or movies or any other scripts how has improv and the fact that so many talented writers have an improv background. How do you think that that has affected the US the comedic scripts that we’re seeing these days.

S23: Well I haven’t been in many writer’s rooms but if I know how some some of the stuff that I’ve written and with friends how we’ve gone about it and basically we improvise you know we’ll we’ll we’ll improvise it and then either script it out from that and use a lot of us came up in the Second City style where you didn’t start with it on a piece of paper you started by putting an improvised scene in front of a house and seeing how they liked it feeling when they lost interest and then how to string those beats and moments together so that at the end you had you had a scene and then you would get a transcription of that scene after you had completed doing it. So you ended up with a script last from the scene that you from the scene that you had made and from hearing from friends who had worked on shows like veep like like Peter Grosz or David pass crazy there. There’s you know a read through and then people are encouraged to put it up on their feet to improvise from it and then the writers may go off and come back with changes that were based on that on that improvisation. So I think it’s just a more welcome part of the process than than it used to be. And quite frankly when you’re improvising it’s easier to accidentally look like a good actor. You don’t have to the part where you pretend you’re hearing it from the first time is removed and replaced by the actuality of hearing it for the first time. And quite often then that that that that reaction is is you know momentary and true which makes you look like a heck of an actor even even if you’re like me not right right.

S22: In acting you know the key the key trait is listening. But of course in improv it is if you don’t you’ll have nothing to say the next time Oh you’re listen in your fanny off. Yeah for sure it does also strike me that 10 15 years ago that process you just described professional writers Writers Guild of America writers embracing in proverbs and using their skills as opposed to getting their backs up and saying listen guys that’s fun for what you do but this is you know this is this is the big leagues and we’re much more intentional than that.

S23: It seems like that’s been a big change and that might be what Amber was saying earlier I’d like to to part of the sensibility of an improviser late improviser as well acquainted with the with the concept of a team laugh that I don’t know who said it. There was no you know it wasn’t it wasn’t Mike’s laugh it wasn’t Ann’s laugh it was that was a team laugh built by built by the squad because we’re here to make the larger thing the larger thing better and so if if improvisers are welcomed into those rooms I think it’s because it’s it’s not about it’s not about them it’s about us trying to make this better.

S14: And most jerks are eventually weeded out in improvisation because no one wants to work with them. And so you have this kind of nice byproduct of kind people tending to rise to the top as opposed to the jerk who tried to stomp on everyone on the on the way on the way up. So you’re also finding yourself you know probably an hour in a writer’s room with someone who has a nice personality listens to others ideas is curious and tries to find ways to make things work before they try and find a way to destroy it.

S24: Yeah I remember like ten years ago I started to get maybe even more 10 15 years ago I was getting auditions for commercials and they would say that they were looking for improvisers as opposed to just regular actors. And that was what I quickly realized is because they didn’t want to pay writers to write their stuff. They wanted an actor that could also write their spot for them. And so we all got pretty wise to it pretty quick and like wait a minute that’s not fair. But it was nice too to know that they were starting to realize the potential of an improviser being multifaceted in that way.

S22: Hi T.J. have the three thousand eight hundred Sonic commercials that you and Peter have done.

S15: Just been an end around to paying a writer. Yes.

S14: Yeah we’re part of a pirate part of that machine now although I do do whatever was and I remember very early on in my my acting career here what I refer to as an acting career auditioning for like a beer commercial where they said they looked for improvisers and remember I think having like a fairly good audition I didn’t get the job but I definitely saw one of the lines I improvised in the final in the final commercial right. I think yeah I mean it was a thing where they were looking for it to be written by improvisers on the way I believe less filling.

S25: That was me. So when they when they approached you. So

S20: people don’t know. I mean they know your face T.J. because you’re in Peter Grosz I’ve been in how many 300 something commercials.

S23: I think I think maybe more than that by now. Yeah.

S13: So you’ve been in all these sort of commercials and they obviously from the get go wanted you to improv. Did they promise you it would be anything other than one commercial had they start.

S14: Oh no no. There was yeah there was no promise. From the beginning I remember that Pete I the very first shoot was in Phoenix Arizona and we were sitting like in the in the lobby of the hotel there in Phoenix eating like the free tri color nachos at the at the happy hour. And I sketched out on a napkin like man Pete if they run all three of these dude we could we probably made like six grand man rent is paid for the year dude we’re kings.

S23: You know like another round. So yeah the fact that it stuck around this long was an absolute surprise I think for everybody involved especially Pete Knight.

S13: Where do you where do you see either improv going or improv affecting you know comedy in the comedies that we see that we don’t even know are in improv.

S19: What do you think Zach. It’s hard to say. I mean one the one thing that I have experienced somewhat lately is like things that I’ve worked on where we improvise a lot but then they don’t end up using any of the improvised stuff. But it’s still. Oh you mean films or yeah film shows I’ve been on but you can still kind of it like helps me find the character and you can kind of like just sense a vibe that it feels a little more real and you know the scenes kind of flow a little bit better. So that’s something where like you know we’re doing improvising but then you’re not seeing any of that stuff onscreen but it still does have an impact.

S13: So I think probably that will continue to happen to our all actors trained in it these days are there some who are like look I’m Royal Shakespeare Company and I need my lines I imagine there are.

S19: I think because of my background the shows that I tend to get hired on everyone is for the most part comfortable with improv because I’m better at that than I am acting.

S18: So I wouldn’t be hired for the jobs where it’s like we really got to nail this because we need to put Trujillo you’re our man. Zach Jarrett has some reason I guess we have Amber where do you see this whole thing go. This whole shebang.

S16: Well I think that you know improv has kind of come out of the like the like sewers of like I used to just be like the joke thing like it’s like doing murder mystery dinner theater it’s like if you’re an improviser people are like what.

S24: But I think now it’s respected and I think it’s because it’s more mainstream and because of people like Tina Fey and Amy Poehler and all the UCB guys and so I think it’s just kind of it’s it’s a it’s a respected part of comedy and and the acting world and the creative process in a way that I don’t think it was before. So I think it’s here to stay and in that way that it’s just like yeah this is most comedy people probably have some experience with improv and that’s a good thing.

S13: But what about this phenomenon that a bunch of you guys I think to some extent all talked about of there is this huge burgeoning infrastructure it seems harder and harder to churn out all the in proverbs and also have them have an audience. I think about you know I think if you look at the statistics that are American conservatories every year graduate a few hundred people who are violinists and yet are American seven symphonies have four open violin seats. Is that a problem.

S24: I mean I don’t know how many people are planning on careers in improv because if they are they’re not going to make any money. I think like most people go use improv to kind of springboard themselves into something else. There aren’t a lot of professional improvisers out there. I mean there are a handful of people that are like touring and teaching and making their life and kind of like on the the Guru track. But I think that it’s it’s a springboard for a lot of people as opposed to it being like a career path.

S1: I mean T.J. has you T.J. you may have made more money than at improv than anyone who’s I think only done improv.

S14: Well let’s let’s take me out of there and just make that a story.

S25: Let’s say I had but I’m a I’m a true freak man like the amount of the amount of luck that that I’ve been you know lucky enough to fortune enough to receive is is is is really is really bizarre.

S26: But at Lake Lake Zach was saying a couple of times I’ve gotten to be hired you know to do little parts in a movie. But they knew I was no good as an actor and was terrible for script. So I also you know like got hired because they wanted someone specifically who was going to improvise those you know those little those little parts.

S20: That’s a great calling card. Hire me because you know I’m terrible as an actor.

S25: I’m so bad at this. Let me be in your movie.

S27: You know what no sane person would ever hire me as an actor. Therefore I get to only do it. Prof.

S14: Mike is to to the kind of like growth and and spread of improvisation a few years ago Dave and I did did a few shows in Europe. We played in London and Copenhagen Rome and Vienna and we did a workshop in Vienna Austria for thirty folks from Bremen and Moscow and around Austria and around Germany Slovenia and stuff like that. And we were saying like OK well like if this was in a Herald or you know this was a second beat of a Herald and all something like oh my gosh man Hey has anybody here ever even heard of a Herald every hand. But one went up in that in that room and Dave turned to me and said basically you know what.

S21: Thirty years ago there were 30 of us in the world who knew what who knew what a Herald was. And now look at this. And the woman who was from it was into Slovenia Slovakia had been taking improvisation as part of her grammar school curriculum since the sixth grade. So that the the growth of it is not only in the entertainment industry here but it’s it’s it’s I’ve seen it changed globally.

S20: I have this theory that we’ve all gotten funnier and mostly I attributed it to the rise of just comedy in the home and streaming services and in 1974 Sunday nights there was not one comedy show on TV and on Tuesday nights there was only the Sonny show and the SEC share show and I watch them and they weren’t funny. But maybe this is maybe this has a major if my thesis is right that we’ve all gotten a little funny or maybe the rise of improv is also to credit someone it could be also the rise of the ocean levels.

S18: We know we’re all going down fast you better start getting funding the kind of humor is all gallows humor Exactly yeah.

S13: So if I were to write a book or an article how improv changed the world I don’t want to be maximalist and maybe overstate my case but be plausible. What would what would I what should I say in it.

S19: I think it got a lot of people in their 20s to move to New York City. The problem is the rent.

S26: One element of life for many of us I think we’ve we’ve always. Many of us have tried to keep a line between improvisation and and self-help but if you wanted to blur that line not to be too Pollyanna ish about it hopefully it made us a little more and you know a little more likely to listen to someone else’s idea a little more likely to say to say OK or you know a little more likely to be curious or fascinated by our partner and maybe a little less wrapped up in our great ideas and what’s going on in you know the the solitude of our own heads.

S24: Yeah like I think collaboration is such a big part of it and listening which is like such a it’s a skill that nobody has anymore. And so I think it’s so important and you know that we’re all storytellers and we all have stories to tell and there’s so many different kinds of stories and people will it’s amazing what an audience will watch people do. I mean it’s an end to come. Especially with life theater like that’s also something that could easily go away. You know and so I think it’s such a special thing to sit in a room full of strangers and all laugh together especially in a world that’s so chaotic and you know politics and all everything’s just a nightmare and then you can go and seek solace in this comedy theater for a couple hours and have a beer while you’re doing it. It’s pretty magical.

S13: And I’ve got to tell you I listen to a lot of podcasts I’ve read a lot of interviews with people in other art forms or journalism whatever quasi art forms.

S20: And it seems like even the successful ones making a movie they hate it they always talk about this business this and the business that and it’s so hard to do and it’s such a struggle and how do you protect yourself and self care. I do not. I am not hearing that from this conversation.

S19: I genuinely think part of that is because improv is not a career so. This is the place I go for the self care. So woodworkers would say the same thing. I don’t. But for me it’s it’s something that I. I do it because I enjoy it and so I would stop doing if it if it was like causing me all those things.

S27: But your career is comedy and acting. Yeah. And the biggest skill set you have is based on income. It’s based on improv. So you know it’s not unrelated to your career.

S19: It’s not a related but the actual shows the performing that is sort of like a safe haven from from the other stuff at least for me.

S24: Yeah it’s like a rejuvenation. It’s like going to the spa after you get to do an improv show because it’s like you know you just leave it all there it’s all you can do whatever you want. You’re not following anybody’s rules but your own and you’re you know you’re only responsible to yourself and the people that are on stage with you and you’re all responsible for each other and so it is very it’s so freeing you just get to go and make fun stuff and make people laugh.

S14: And also like failure is so inherent in improvisation that that with that which with so many other like forms of performance or you know or or whatever art forms like some amount of like success is is the desired goal.

S26: Like more interesting failure is the desired goal of improvisation and once we can like it like definitely you know acknowledge that failure is an inherent part of this better than it you can kind of take a bigger breath a little bit.

S24: Yeah. The only thing I would say is a downside for me is that I’m so spoiled that everyone I know and all my friends and my husband are all improvisers so that when I meet regular people I’m just like oh what a drag.

S18: Civilians are a bummer man.

S20: It’s basically you’ve gotten very bad at people disagreeing with you T.J. JAG Ozdowski you can see him all over Chicago and the world apparently Vienna Amber Nash is home theater is Dad’s Garage in Atlanta. Zach Cherry performs at the UCB and is in touch he’s in a new show on Fox a new animated show coming up called Duncanville guys thank you all so much.

S24: So much fun. Thank you.

S28: And that’s it for today’s show. OK. Shout out any profession. I need a profession. Here we got zookeeper we got actuarial account in epidemiology. Oh good. There we go. Producer Daniel Schrader is the producer of the gist. The theme of tomorrow’s show. Day three of comedy week is comedy podcasts and indeed the gist. Is a podcast. To improve Depp road to Peru. And thanks for listening.