The Black V is adding three to its family of people who go out on stage with no idea what they are going to say or what is going to be thrown their way. Joining the improv team here at Northwestern are freshmen Alexander Lowry and Emelie Swonger, and junior Warren Duncan.
Improv basically means performing without any preconceived notions of what is going to be said or what is going to happen in the scene, so preparation is nearly impossible. However, all three are very excited to be a part of the team.
Swonger saw the group perform during orientation weekend and was instantly hooked.
“This [improv] is definitely up my alley,” Swonger said. “I was worried I would be overlooked because I’m a freshman this year, but I’m excited to see what the year has in store.”
Duncan and Swonger have very little experience with improv, and Lowry is brand new to the improv scene, but they are not going to let that phase them. The new members love the unpredictability of improv, and are looking forward to learning more throughout the season.
Both Swonger and Duncan agree that the spontaneity is their favorite aspect of improv.
“You never know what the scene is going to become,” Swonger said. “You walk in thinking one thing and all of the sudden by the end of the scene things have gotten totally out of control. I love how a scene can become something totally random and unexpected, and I love being able to build off of the other members of the group. We support each other to create a scene that is fun and enjoyable for those who are watching.”
Duncan agrees with Swonger about the appeal of spontaneity in the group. “There are so many awesome things that could happen,” Duncan said. “There are so many different ways a story could go.”
Lowry holds a very similar view.
“I really like telling stories to people, and I really like putting myself out there without anything supporting me except for a few other people,” Lowry said. “I can’t wait to make other people laugh.”
Also, all three members admit they have a few nerves about performing.
“Improv is a little different,” Duncan said. As an active member of NW’s theater department, Duncan is taking a step out of his comfort zone.
“It’s so spur of the moment so there’s always that fear of the unknown,” Duncan said.
However, both Swonger and Lowry feel that nerves before a performance are not necessarily a bad thing. Lowry loves that jittery excitement before a show, and Swonger believes the nerves make her sharper. Thus, despite the nerves and the unpredictability of improv, all three members are looking forward to joining this theatre team.
“I love everybody on the team and I’m excited to start,” Duncan said. “I’m excited to work with all those awesome people.”
Senior Black V member Julia Van Dyk says she is very excited to work with the new members. “They are all very creative, and they each bring something new to the table that no one else does,” Van Dyk said.
There are 12 members of the Black V now, including the production manager. The next performance the Black V will put on will be featured on campus sometime in early October.