Thursday, March 15, 2007

And a grand time was had by all....

Ok - It’s a big entry because I’ve let it lapse (well it is the swimming championships soon – geddit? Huh huh?) Now that I have emerged from the thick funk of inebriation I guess I should elucidate on the happenings during my summer Sydney holiday/working visit/championship
title defending tour.

The city was fantastic – beautiful weather made for lots of time on foot exploring the wrong way down hilly streets (Use a map? Bah…I’m a man) and loads of bookshop visits - salivating over pricey tomes with pretty pictures. I met up and had dinner with the delightful Felicity and Craig and I marveled at their glorious balcony view and world famous - award winning Italian sausage - risotto (yes WORLD famous) then it was back to the wonderful No 71 B&B in Bondi Junction – an amazing place with terrific rooms and service (and a dog named spot who tried to eat me by way of hello).

Thursday night saw me doff my Porkpie and trundle off to the Chauvel Cinema where the premiere of “The Notorious Bettie Page” was being held. The Belladonnas where in full force and there were lashings of errr... lashings and beer before going in to watch the film.

Crappy phone camera was all I had folks...

- on a side note it all ends rather poorly with Bettie returning to Church and a life redeemed, a fact that seemed to disappoint this well (high) heeled crowd somewhat…

Friday 2pm: I met fellow theatresports team members Rik, Rama and Jason and Glen Hall from Perthland out the front of the salubrious Rooftop Travellers Lodge and we set up base camp at the pub opposite - there we sat down and wrote out all our scenes for the show....nah we drank quite a lot of booze and waited for the other States to turn up.

Portrait of the Artist as a Young Boozehound

Jason Geary and his love of the "f' verb

Rama with still life

Katrina and Alister from Brisbane turned up, followed by the rest of Perthland - Xaiver, Jimmy and Tegan...more merriment etc...

Tegan's cheek, Alister, Jimmy, Xaiver and Cale

Around 7pm we staggered off to the official welcome dinner at the Roxbury hotel were we met up with Bec De Unumuno and co.

The rest of the team members turned up and we ate, drank and told loads of filthy, filthy jokes so we wouldn't do it onstage the next night (well that was the plan I guess)

Interesting note: the calamari was excellent but apparently the Snapper was quite rubbery...

Stagger, stagger, laugh, giggle, smoke, cough, sneeze, late night rooftop shenanigans, laugh, laugh - snore.

The Glebe Saturday market was on so we all went down, had breakfast and waited for the 4.30 call for that night...

Much, much later after getting a taxi to the Theatre (strangely there was no one to drive us) we entered the beautiful Enmore Theatre and quickly lay down and went to sleep only to be woken be the arrival of musician extraordinaire John Thorn, as well our Hostesses for the night – Julia Zemiro and Josie O’Reilly. Then we all went and did a massive tech run.

WA: Glen, Xaiver, Tegan & Jimmy

QLD: Katrina, Tom, Alister & Tamzin
NSW: John, Michal, Murray & Amanda

There was no theme (as there has in the past) this year and to her credit Rebecca had created a simple, smooth running order that would allow for maximum impro time onstage - lovely stuff. All the suggestions came from Josie as Time keeper and all the rounds were timed scenes. The format went something like this:

Game from a hat
Challenge Round
Mix and Match (two members from two teams play a scene together)


Solo scene
Audience Challenge (got at interval and put in the hat)
Fantasy scene (team plays something they've always wanted to see onstage, or thereabouts)

The show kicked off with a song by a local rapper - Brother Black - and it brought all the teams in with energy etc. The show went really well we started off the night with an ‘I Love You’ scene set on a Pirate ship and away we went. Good vibes from all teams meant loads of helping out in each others scenes and plenty of that goodwill spilling out into the audience. Julia and Josie were hilarious as the hostesses with the mostesses and we all had ball. We scored two 5 - 5 - 5's in the night I’ve never jumped that high onstage before in my life.

The Enmore theatre was full that night (around a 1000 happy punters) and I have never heard such a wonderful sound as the tumultuous roar of laughter that kept coming from that audience. Truly a great night of improv from all the states.

All Show photos (copyright) by the excellent Stephen Gustav Reinhardt - More show pics here

We won by one point over WA which was a surprise (we thought they were going to win) and we all waved and nicked offstage to much applause.

The rest of the night is a blur of seeing happy faces (Steph!, Felicity! Scrabblers! Dave Callan!), speeches, medals, booze, smoke and happy times. Laughter, beer, wine, G & T’s (by god I’m amazed I didn’t keel over with blood poisoning), fags, the world's most dangerous MacDonalds outlet, loads of wonderful chatting with Rubber Soul and a beautiful vision in a baggy jacket… Finishing only when I saw the sun rising up over the kitchen sink, piercing the dream and starting the car key of reality. Such a shame…truly a night I never wanted to end.

My heartfelt thanks to Impro Australia for putting on the Nationals and getting us up there and looking after us etc and thanks for sending me Impro Melbourne - it was an honour and a privilege.

Cough, hack, heck, spittle etc Next – THE COMEDY FESTIVAL!

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