Monday, July 21, 2008

New improv group's name says it all

Lazy Fairy may be considered the lazy man's way of pronouncing the French term laissez faire, which means let it be or leave alone. It's usually a term associated with the concept of free enterprise. But not anymore. "Lazy Fairy" is now the new face of improv in the Sarasota/Bradenton area.

The troupe took to the phrase because it describes acting in its simplest form, said Chris Friday, ring leader of the six-member group, featuring Christine Alexander, Catey Brannan, Tim Beasley, Angel M. Parker and Zan. With the worry that promoting themselves with such French flair may confuse the masses, or themselves, members decided to call the group "Lazy Fairy" since it's easier to say and not nearly so hard to spell, said Chris.

You may have seen members of this acting group around before. A few of them used to be part of a troupe that performed improv musicals three years ago. Others have been a familiar face at Florida Studio Theatre's Improv during the summer. But what makes "Lazy Fairy" different from the "Whose-Line-Is-It-Anyway" brand of improvisation is, well, the improv itself.

The troupe will employ a Chicago-style of improv, where, instead of the audience throwing out an incessant list of suggestions for skits, only one suggestion from the crowd will be used. The idea will support the theme of an entire play, Chris said.

That sounds pretty hard to pull off, I told him. But Chris said the result can be pretty entertaining - hit or miss.

"It's the element of the unknown," he said. "A train wreck could happen. People will come to see (a potential) train wreck."

The troupe also is bringing improv into the work place through a special workshop program called Corporate Detox, which breaks down the elements of improv into team-work building skills on the job.

The troupe already has had several gigs booked in Bradenton and Sarasota. Don't miss their next appearance at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday (July 23). Tickets are $12. For more information, call 365-2494. — January Holmes

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