Teen improv troupe for grades 9-12 seeks new comedians

Celebrating their first performance: Lillian Maggio, Colin Zachariasen, Caleb Garcia, James McGirr, Alina Brennan, Megan Simpson, Joey Chen, Judah Woomert and Annabelle Pietryka.

Venice Theatre’s new teen improv troupe, The Peanut Gallery, had a wonderful kick off this past spring semester. To build on the troupe’s success, the theatre is holding a new round of auditions on June 1 at 2:30 p.m. (Students that were part of the troupe last semester are required to audition again.) No experience or preparation is required. Students should come to auditions dressed comfortably and ready to play. The troupe will rehearse once a week for 11 weeks to explore popular improv games, techniques, and concepts in a fun, fast-paced environment. Troupe rehearsals will culminate in a ticketed performance on the theatre’s Pinkerton stage in August.

Rehearsals are fun, exciting, and collaborative. Troupe members get the opportunity to explore and develop their improv, storytelling, acting, and teamwork skills in a safe, supportive environment. The summer troupe will work on acting exercises, short-form improv games, as well as be introduced to long-form improv activities. Improv is an art form that forces the actor to think outside of the box. It demands that its performers focus, have a willingness to listen and engage, and tell a story without the safety net of a script. The ideal troupe member should display these qualities.

Venice Theatre’s Education & Outreach Department introduced The Peanut Gallery Teen Improv Troupe in Spring 2019 as a way to create additional performance opportunities for area teens. The long-term goal is to develop this group so that it helps to fill the requests Venice Theatre receives to perform in the community.

VT’s Youth Production Company (YPC) where students create theatre on their own terms and are responsible for all aspects of producing a show from casting to set design, is another new offering for area teens. Both The Peanut Gallery and YPC allow members to develop portfolio material for college applications while cultivating 21st-century workplace skills like creativity, communication, collaboration and problem-solving. Venice Theatre is at 140 Tampa Ave. W., Venice.

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