When I approached the Melbourne Town Hall I noticed a lot of young people with long skipping ropes. Children passing by were invited to join in the fun. There was lots of excitement when a little girl achieved the record 35 jumps. I thought it was a clever way for the Impromptunes troupe to drum up some business.
The impromptunes team members are between the ages of 20 and mid thirties and clearly having a lot of fun. Half have a musical theater background and half an improvising background. They are incredibly talented young people with quick wits who need to think on their feet under pressure of a live audience. Some originally came from Perth and some are teachers during the day. Imagine the fun you would have in their classes!
The troupe and children celebrating at the end of the show
On the stage is just one big red box (a box of possibilities), and a keyboard. Each random item in the box can be a prop or part of a costume. For example, a sifter can be a helmet worn in medieval times and headphones became part of a robot costume.
The host, Roland, asks everybody to be ready to join in the Yahooing and Yippeeing. He starts by telling the crowd that the show is completely improvised. It's not until the show begins that I realise why he has done this. It's because it seems almost impossible that the storyline could have been created on the spot.
Somehow this talented team sing, dance, act and create music to suit the direction indicated by the audience. As hard as it is to believe this is a completely improvised musical. The warm up item invited one of the smallest children in the room, Aiden, to answer some simple questions. Impromptunes then created a song about him right then and there. At various stages during the show the audience were asked to vote on how the show should proceed.
This hilarious show had my companion throwing her head back in laughter and brushing tears away from her face. She asked me not to say that she was the one who laughed the most throughout the whole show. At one stage a little girl jumped out of her seat, pointed and screamed 'There, there'.
The same crew also have an evening version of this family act. This runs at 8.15 pm every evening during the comedy festival at the Trades Hall. These comical musicals attract families with preschool and primary aged children. I know of many secondary children who would also appreciate the presentation. This is a very inexpensive family activity that is sure to have everyone laughing and wondering how they do it.
Join the fun at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival
At the end of the show I asked a couple of young audience members there opinion. I'd say they were spot on. Lukey, a 7 year old, said 'It was very funny. I liked the Robot bit because he did a funny dance.' Lily aged 8 said 'It was quite imaginative. I liked how they chose the story. It was funny. There was nothing that I didn't like about it.'
Be prepared … anything can happen in the hilarious Impromptunes - Tune Your Own Adventure! The entire musical is created according to the audience suggestions. If you can imagine it, it can happen. Imagine that!