Two local improv groups are squaring off in a quick-witted theatre-sports challenge that’s designed to thrill while also fundraising for cash-strapped Red Deer College theatre students.
RDC’s extracurricular Moose Chuckles improvisation group is going head-to-head with professional rivals from Bull Skit for a hopefully hilarity-inducing sparring match on Wednesday in Studio D of the RDC Arts Centre.
The goal is to raise donations for theatre students who are having to cross the province or, in some cases, country, to apprentice for with professional theatre companies.
Moose Chuckles founder and director Emily Seymour said all second-year theatre students have do practicums by in April. “We have to travel … to work with a theatre company that interests us for three weeks.”
Only a few students can manage to do this in Central Alberta with companies like Lacombe’s Cow Patti Theatre or Red Deer’s Bull Skit.
Many others have to arrange apprenticeships with Calgary or Edmonton troupes and pay room and board while in those cities. Since timetables don’t always align with the school term, some students are even going further afield to work with theatre groups as far away as Toronto.
“We are quite an inventive, ambitious class and many of us have our sights set on companies in Toronto or Vancouver to further our education, but because we are students many of us will not have the funds to support our trips,” said Seymour, who noted air fares and rents add a huge expense to the school year.
She would like to help fellow students living on limited student loans cope with his greater expenses through the theatre-sports benefit that creates improvisational challenges for the competing groups.
Moose Chuckles is an improv troupe made up of second-year RDC theatre students that Seymour formed last March. The group has been putting on 7:30 p.m. sketch comedy and improvisation shows on the last Wednesday of the month in Studio D. So far, they are little known beyond family and friends of the student actors involved.
But Seymour wants to make the general public aware they can attend the free Moose Chuckles sketch comedy and improv shows. And she believes the upcoming fundraiser, with members of the local Bull Skit crew, will be a good way to introduce a wider audience to Moose Chuckles while also helping support students.
“I see this as an opportunity to invite the community to the college to see what we are working on, and also raise money for the second-year field placement project,” said Seymour.
Admission to the 7:30 p.m. theatre-sports event is free, but donations of bottles, cans, cash or non-perishable goods for the student food bank will be accepted.
For more information, call 1-403-471-3783 or see the Moose Chuckles Facebook page.