Building Our Scene: Nottingham’s Growing Improv Community

I believe big things are happening in Nottingham.  Big improv things.  Exciting and big and incredibly attractive.

MissImp already gets one of the largest regular audiences for an improv troupe in the UK.  I know, right?  Us!  Ok, sometimes the numbers are what we want, and we all want them higher, but think about that.  Aside from a couple of large professional groups that have been around a long time, month in, month out, MissImp is certainly in the top 5 improv groups in the UK for regular audiences at a regular improv night.  That’s pretty damn special.

Improv is growing in the UK and we can have a role in making it a bigger, more recognised art form in this country.  I know I certainly want that for us as a group.  This may seem funny coming from a guy who just missed four Thursday jams in a row (In three and a half years I’ve never missed more than two consecutive jams – I hate missing one).  Thing is, I’ve been away doing improv, learning improv, spending time with improvisers and it has done two things.  Firstly, it has further invigorated my love of improvising.  Hard to imagine, I know – but I’m even more fired up about it.  Secondly, it has made me realise the huge opportunity we have in Nottingham.

Nottingham is one of the most landlocked places in the UK.  We can draw people in from a wide area.  Unlike London we don’t have nearly as much other competition from other performing arts.  We are in exactly the right place to make MissImp a centre of improvised excellence with a great national reputation.  In the improv world, thanks to getting ourselves out and about, we are now better known than we have ever been.  Thanks to getting great teachers over from the US, and from within the UK, we have increased our skills tremendously in the last 2 years.

So what next?  Parky has set-up Little Imps, Teen Imps are on the way, and there’s an advanced improv course about to go on sale. Added to this there will be more beginners classes, more longform shows, our residency continues at The Glee Club and there will be the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s best teachers.  It’s an exciting time to be in MissImp.  In a year from now I think we will have an even more vibrant improv community in Nottingham.  We still need to work on getting the word out and getting greater audiences, and we still need to keep working on our skills, but I honestly believe we are in one of the most exciting and fun places to be doing improvised comedy in the UK at the moment.  Let’s make the most of it!

Whaddaya think?

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