With the approval of all current members required, making it onto the Cal Lutheran Improv Troupe is no easy feat. This year the troupe welcomed four new members to their team who come from assorted majors, classes and backgrounds.
The four new members all tend to play different characters during a show, and have different styles of how they “do” improv. Jordan Erickson, a sophomore Theatre Arts major and new Improv Troupe member, says that he tends to be more of a dramatic character.
“On the audition sheet, when we were signing in, you had to circle if you were either a straight character, a nice person, a drama queen, a diva, an asshole or other. And I definitely circled diva,” Erickson said.
Erickson, like many other Improv Troupe members, has a background in theatre, and says his love for improv stems from his love of playing characters.
They all bring something unique to the table, said Lisa Fredrickson, the Improv Troupe’s faculty adviser.
“It’s always so exciting when the new people come in because it changes everything with the people who’ve already been there,” Fredrickson said.
Bridget De Maria, a sophomore Communication and Theatre Arts major also has ties to musical theatre. De Maria was in assorted plays during high school, and has been in a play at Cal Lutheran, however she admits that improv scared her at first because all of her friends in high school were so good at it.
“Anywhere we would go, they would always try to start doing improv scenes, and they would just do it and try to get me involved. I would go in the corner and just try to do it, but it was never good,” De Maria said.
Unlike many prospective improv troupe members, De Maria got unanimous approval to join the troupe from every improv member her first time trying out, and is now one of just two sophomores on the troupe. De Maria, as well as others on the troupe, mention how taking the improv class helps with joining the troupe, as you already have a network of people.
Other new members of the troupe, such as Cale Curtis, a senior music production major, have also had the support of the troupe before auditioning.
“We’ve had our eye on Cale for a whole year, since last year. He just brings this super unique, watchable energy that we just have been wanting in the troupe for a really long time,” Fredrickson said.
Curtis, who was previously on the Moorpark College Improv Troupe, says he thinks the Cal Lutheran crowd will be the biggest one he has performed in front of yet. Curtis also said that it takes confidence to get up on stage and be in sync with the other members.
For Nicki Schedler, a junior communication major, much of this confidence comes from her background in theatre, and working with other members of the troupe. Nicki has taken the improv class three times, and auditioned for the troupe once before, but this semester will be her first time performing with the troupe.
“You don’t always have to be the lead of the scene, but if you can support somebody then that’s helping because it’s not a one man show,” Schedler said.