Ways I Felt Involved at UCB Theatre


My last post about “feeling involved” and now I’m trying to remember what things happened that made me feel involved. I tried to include the ways in which I met people who later helped me get performance/job opportunities. 

November 1999- Summer 2000:

Met friends in a Kevin Mullaney 101 (as detailed in this post) and we started practicing together. We hired Seth Morris and then Billy Merritt as coaches. Billy started saying hi to us at Harold Night and at McManus.

Kevin Mullaney would be at McManus and we’d get what felt like insidery stories about Chicago.

Saw enough shows that I knew who the main players of the UCB stage were. I knew who the stars were, and who was struggling (in my opinion, from an audience member’s perspective). At McManus after classes, I would be the one telling people about what shows were good.

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I had an interesting reaction to this question.

When I think “am I involved at the UCB?” I feel like I am only a little bit involved. And that’s crazy - because I teach there, perform there, and spend most of my week involved with either the UCB or the community that has grown out of the theater and school. So I am clearly very much involved.

But I don’t feel like I do as much as some people, so my initial reaction is to feel like I am not involved.

When I first started I was just in the audience, not on a team. Then I was on teams, and in practice groups, but I wasn’t on house teams. Then I was on a house team, but I barely coached, or I didn’t teach, or I wasn’t in other shows.

Now I think about how I haven’t performed in my own Spank, or have never been in ASSSSCAT, or I simply don’t feel that funny, or not popular, or whatever - and it’s all bullshit because of course I am involved.

But in way I’ll always feel I can do more. And I know it’s not true, but I’ll probably continue to feel my involvement with the UCB is “not that much”.

So, if you are like me, you will never totally feel that validation, or that satisfaction, or contentment. And that’s ok. Wanting more is normal, right? The Chase is the Thing as Mr. IFC himself Chris Gethard said (congrats Gethard!).

Which isn’t necessarily advice on how to get involved, but it is me saying that if you ask that question you are probably more involved then you are admitting to yourself.

  1. michelleinspace reblogged this from improvnonsense and added:
    eye opening. Things happen...dedication, not just...chance....
  2. mimi-hoops reblogged this from improvnonsense and added:
    This was very useful to read! Feeling a little more ‘on schedule’ now, 20 months in.
  3. kevhines reblogged this from improvnonsense and added:
    had an interesting reaction...involved. And that’s crazy
  4. britajames reblogged this from improvnonsense and added:
    As always, Will Hines...resident UCB sage provides much insight here.
  5. feitelogram reblogged this from improvnonsense and added:
    An awesome doing/loving comedy looks like. Think 2010
  6. sebsational reblogged this from khealywu and added:
    Am I the only person who got involved with UCB by sleeping with Brett White?
  7. salgentile reblogged this from improvnonsense and added:
    I love this for many reasons, among which is this: We often underestimate the simple power of a friendly gesture, like...