This weekend we kick off our fall season with an Improv evening featuring a wonderful troupe from Duval called Spotlight Giant.

By the end of December, we will have clocked in 21 performances for 8 different shows.  (And that’s just for the fall season.)

We believe strongly that the best kind of learning happens on your feet and in front of an audience.

Why? It raises the stakes for the artist.

There is nothing that comes close to those fifteen minutes before “places” is called.

Each performer will experience a combination of exhilaration and anxiety that creates an emotional weather vane.  It manifests in all kinds of ways. Mostly, you see a lot of jumping up and down.

As soon as the performance starts, there is a collective exhalation of breath. Now the focus really comes into play.  If things are going right, the ensemble will address each other with a series of side-glances that telegraphs one thought only “let’s do this!”

The audiences at the studio lovingly acknowledge the risks the groups of actors standing in front of them are taking.  It’s a kind room. But the laughs and the tears are always spontaneous and well earned.

Does this mean our staff gives up a fair amount of their weekends so this chemistry can happen?

Absolutely.  The bulk of them came up as theater kids. They understand that what we are providing with our performance opportunities isn’t a “fun activity” which indulges a group of adolescents.

It is oxygen for the kind of young person who has started to investigate the human experience through a higher form of communication: storytelling.