Lots of laughs had at WLST’s Improv workshop

Neal Matoga (from left) takes part in a game of Puppets along with Sean Bredo, Max Winkelman and Martijn Schriever at the Williams Lake Studio Theatre’s Improv Workshop on Sunday, August 11. Greg Sabatino photo.
Greg Sabatino photos Longtime Williams Lake Studio Theatre member Sheryl-Lynn Lewis laughs as she demonstrates the game Puppets with Patrick Davies during the WLST’s Improv Workshop.
Will Reierson (front left) and Colin Fradsham laugh as they perform on stage together during an Improv game at the Williams Lake Studio Theatre. In the background Sean Smith (from left) Sean Bredo and Sandi Alaric watch. Greg Sabatino photo

This summer the Williams Lake Studio Theatre’s summer workshops have been a hit thus far bringing in new people to the theatre.

Starting off with a popularly-requested actors panel, which saw four of the theatre’s most experienced actors sharing tips and tricks to attendees, the theatre followed up strong with an Improv Workshop on Sunday, Aug. 11. Around 16 people of all ages and acting experience took to the stage to perform on the spot theatre, many as newcomers to the WLST.

Improv is a free form version of theatre that relies on quick thinking, openness and spontaneity within the structure of certain games that limits the scenes in some creative and amusing way. This style of acting has been most famously showcased in the popular T.V. show Whose Line Is It Anyway? and is practiced around the world in various theatres.

The workshop was led by longtime actress and WLST member Sheryl-Lynn Lewis who confidently guided the large group through a wide range of games and exercises to loosen up the crowd. The easy laughter and playful nature were all thanks to her and were enjoyed by all.

“I was very excited by people’s willingness to take risks and try something new. People threw themselves into the games, and sometimes off the stage, with a lot of enthusiasm,” Lewis said. For me, the appeal of Improv lies in the spontaneous interaction with the other actors and relying on and trusting each other to make the scene work. It naturally brings out the funny in people.”

Read More: Studio Theatre offering a wide range of summer workshops

At the conclusion of the workshop, Lewis encouraged the attendees to return to the theatre for the upcoming workshops and auditions for the Studio Theatre’s next production: A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. See Friday’s Weekend/Advisor for more.

This weekend the Studio Theatre will be offering two back to back workshops including a Lighting Workshop and a Costume Distressing Workshop on Aug. 17 and 18, respectively. Those more interested in the technical side of theatre will not want to miss these workshops, though prior registration is required for the costume workshop via kmacdonald@cariboord.bc.ca.

Next weekend on Aug. 23 the WLST will be holding a Vocal Workshop at 7 p.m. for those interested in musical theatre.

Entry to all workshops is $5 for WLST members and $15 for non-members.

In addition to this workshop, Lewis said she plans to start up a regular Improv group this year and hoped to see many of those who turned out on Sunday return with fresh new faces.

The dates for these future Improv practices have yet to be announced but will be free for anyone to attend. Lewis encourages interested parties to follow the WLST’s Page or check out the WL Improv Group on Facebook.


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