Instant Theatre Company
Thunder Awesome and the Lightning Fantastic

Director Alistair Cook Musical Director Leif Ingebrigtson Performers Shawn Norman, Nima Gholamipour, Brent Hirose, Kelli Ogmundson, Nicole Passmore, Adam Pateman and Lauren McGibbon.

Dates and Venue 6 - 8 February 2014, 8pm | Havana Theatre, 1212 Commercial Drive

Reviewer Karen Fitzgibbon

The audience tonight is louder than in most theatres since improv actors are not only on stage but many members of the audience are also improv actors. It seems that everyone knows everyone so there is excitement in the air. This evening is all about spontaneous comedy and great fun.

Thunder Awesome and the Lightning Fantastic is a musical comedy improv. Actors have to come up with lines quickly, so their brains are buzzing throughout the performance trying to figure out what to do next. The spontaneity is what makes impovs so enjoyable. The theatre calls it an improvised Dystopian Musical Epic. It all takes place is some distant future where food is now in pill form and there is no heat. The audience is asked to choose a subject to use on which to inspire a story for the performers to act out. Tonight’s word is “cheese”.

It’s as much fun as Pictionary or Charades and the audience is kept in a laughing state throughout the entire evening. I was surprised at the amazing singing voices of these actors. We have a villain; boy meets girl, plus starving, freezing people in a small town. The phrase “cold and crusty” keeps popping up at the funniest moments. I was amazed at the great singing voices. Some of these actors should maybe consider a serious musical direction from here with voices like that. What adds humour is when someone forgets who they are supposed to be or the name of the other actor.

Adam Pateman stands so close to a female actress (Kelli Ogmundson,), that when he says the word “perm” her bangs fly up into the air creating great laughter from the crowd. You never know what to expect in improvised theatre. Nima Gholamipour does a fine job in animation in his subservient roll to his master. The orphaned 8 year old child, Nicole Passmore, confuses the other actors by fluctuating between being an adult and child. She comes up with some pretty funny lines.

The actors produced fun synchronized singing which seems to come out of nowhere. “In outer space” which is a line Brent Hirose invents, becomes the chorus for the song that they make up as they go along. Brent Hirose has a great voice and stage presentation.

I was entertained with good acting and musical talent. Laughter can cure many things. If you have not been to an improv show then take in a future performance by the Instant Theatre Company.

© 2014 Karen Fitzgibbon