Letters

Letters 10-20-2014

Doctor Dan? After several email conversations with Rep. Benishek, he has confirmed that he doesn’t have a clue of what he does. Here’s why...

In Favor Of Our Parks [Traverse] City Proposal 1 is a creative way to improve our city parks without using our tax dollars. By using a small portion of our oil and gas royalties from the Brown Bridge Trust Fund, our parks can be improved for our children and grandchildren.

From January 1970 Popular Mechanics: “Drastic climate changes will occur within the next 50 years if the use of fossil fuels keeps rising at current rates.” That warning comes from Eugene K. Peterson of the Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management.

Newcomers Might Leave: Recently we had guests from India who came over as students with the plan to stay in America. He has a master’s degree in engineering and she is doing her residency in Chicago and plans to specialize in oncology. They talked very candidly about American politics and said that after observing...

Someone Is You: On Sept 21, I joined the 400,000 who took to the streets of New York in the People’s Climate March, followed by a UN Climate Summit and many speeches. On October 13, the Pentagon issued a report calling climate change a significant threat to national security requiring immediate action. How do we move from marches, speeches and reports to meaningful work on this problem? In NYC I read a sign with a simple answer...

Necessary To Pay: Last fall, Grand Traverse voters authorized a new tax to fix roads. It is good, it is necessary.

The Real Reasons for Wolf Hunt: I have really been surprised that no one has been commenting on the true reason for the wolf hunt. All this effort has not been expended so 23 wolves can be killed each year. Instead this manufactured controversy about the wolf hunt has been very carefully crafted to get Proposal 14-2 passed.

Home · Articles · News · Features · Late Night Laughs at OTP
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Late Night Laughs at OTP

The longest running show at the Old Town Playhouse has never been the same twice.

Ross Boissoneau - May 12th, 2014  

For more than four years, “Good On Paper” has been a staple every other Saturday night from 11pm-midnight. The six-person improv comedy act juggles vignettes, games and audience suggestions, some of which can get a little raunchy.

“We don’t set out to make it adult material,” said founding member David Avis, “but it sometimes ends up that way. We can get some pretty dirty audiences.”

Avis said the group rotates through 40 different games, using 15 or so in the show.

These “games” consist of set-ups like “Whose Line Is It Anyway” – party scenes where guests introduce the next guest as a made-up superhero; Alphabet, where every line has to start with the next letter of the alphabet; and Questions Only, where every line is a question.

Some vignettes appear week to week, such as “Chariots of Fire,” where the cast acts out a scene in slow motion to the music from the movie.

The troupe of six includes Avis, Bryan Boettcher, Mike Gauthier, Michael Libby, Heather Strouse, and Stephanie Young, many of whom have been part of the group since its inception.

Like most of the cast, Michael Libby comes from a theatre background. But he also studied improv, including a stint with the famed Second City troupe in Chicago.

Libby also taught acting and theater in high school and grad school.

“I like scripted theatre a lot, but it can get mundane,” running through the same lines and scenes over and over, he said.

Plus, memorizing scripts and attending rehearsals takes time, he said.

“I have a wife and two kids,” Libby said.

“With improv I can walk onstage without spending the time for rehearsal.”

Like the others, Stephanie Young has a theatre background. When she saw the audition notice, she was immediately interested.

“I fell in love with it,” she said. “It’s fantastic and a little terrifying.”

From time to time, the group brings in guests, like Holly Baker and Marc Schollett from TV 7&4, or Christal Frost and Bill Froehlich from WTCM AM 580.

“Good On Paper” is growing its fan base, Avis said.

“Some people come every week,” he said.Libby said the audiences are key to the show.

“They know we haven’t prepared anything,” he said. “We never know what’s going to come at us.”

Good On Paper Improv performs every other Saturday at the downstairs Schmuckal Theatre at Old Town Playhouse in Traverse City. Showtime is 11 pm; doors open at 10:30pm; tickets are $5 at the door. Patrons get free coffee and donuts. For more, visit the group’s Facebook page.

 
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