In my head - and in my dreams - I get around the place like a cross between James Bond and Xena. Effortlessly stylish, but powerful and deadly, like cobra tie. The reality generally involves untucked shirts, tatty scarf-wearing and shoes ill-suited to my bizarrely shaped feet. I am a proponent, it must be said, of "buffoon chic".
Which is why I was more shocked than anyone to see that while playing for Queensland in the 2012 Theatresports National Championships, I may have accidentally combined the Xena/Bond asthetic to look the coolest I will probably ever look in my life.
|Note to self: more corsets.
|The June Dally-Watkins modelling course
I did when I was 14 finally paid off.
The night featured teams from Victoria, New South Wales, Western Australia and the ACT. The performers are all top improvisers, with many of them achieving legend status. It was an absolute joy to share the stage with them; to jump into their scenes when required; and to rely on them to support us - in one scene, literally, when we chose to do a physical challenge where our feet couldn't touch the ground, forcing the others to carry us around the stage!
Our very first game was an "I Love You" scene, and the suggestion our gorgeous MC Rebecca de Unamuno received was "giraffe".
Now the Enmore Theatre is fairly big, and there were around 1000 people in the audience. Sometimes in a space that big, your brain just goes a bit blank and you can't think of something sensible or clever to say - if you can say anything at all. That's kind of what happened as Wade and Tom left the stage and I looked out at the lights. I didn't really have anything in my brain, so I launched into my dodgiest giraffe impression. I used the heels of my boots to shape a lope across the stage in that languid, giraffe-y style. I actually really love giraffes, and always like staring at them whenever I visit zoos. So in between lopes, I stopped and gave my lips a big lick, sticking my tongue out as far as I could.
I must have been out on the stage by myself for a minute, not speaking, just... attempting to be a giraffe. The audience seemed to enjoy it; and the scene got more fun when Wade came on as a lion who just wanted to eat the giraffe. After some discussion, we resolved to put the long-running war between giraffes and lions to one side to take on our true enemies, poachers. Wade threw out the brilliant line "But our alliance cannot just be political, it must be sexual," prompting an "I love you" and a big giraffe-y tongue pash. It was a really simple, charming scene.
|Lion. Giraffe. Art.
"We all work at Taronga Zoo!" they cried as I reached them. "Your giraffe was SPOT ON!"
It was one of the best compliments I've ever received. Girl Clumsy: Officially Endorsed By Zookeepers.
You can see a full gallery of the show at the website of photographer Stephen Reinhardt, and a special thanks to Stephen for letting me use some of his images here. I must also thank the wonderful Impro Australia for all their support, and for putting on a professional and energetic show.
Wade and I returned to Brisbane around lunchtime on Sunday, to prepare for his show Jorogumo at the Brisbane Arts Theatre.
I'm really pleased with how this performance went - based on Japanese monsters and fairytales, I thought it was a wonderful format with shades of light and dark.
|Wearin' whiteface and kimonos. That's how we roll.
Thanks to Paul Harris for the picture.
I'm hoping this feeling is a good one though; the day I think I know everything about impro and can't improve is probably the day I should give it up.
Our next big show is on the Gold Coast! That's right, we're doing a one night only Theatresports show at The Arts Centre Gold Coast on Saturday 2 June. If you live near the coast, I highly recommend the show - tickets are only $20 and we'll even bring down the Championship Belt to show off just how good ImproMafia really is!