Birmingham, UK


On Wednesday, Sean and I were invited along to the Jumprov Press Night in town. When I initially got the invite I wasn't sure what to expect; I'm a big theatre fan however I'd never seen an improv show before so I was really quite intrigued by the whole idea. For those of you who don't know what an improv show is, it's basically a show made up on the spot!

Jumprov are a small independent improv theatre company born and bred right here in Birmingham. Inspired by the lack of diversity in other theatre groups founder, Sunny Dhap, created Jumprov to fill that gap and employ his friends who were all too often typecast in the industry. The group consists of seven members; Sunny Dhap, Jade Samuels, Adaya Henry, David Jackson, Chantal Erraoui, Jay Droch, and Marius Turner. 

So onto the night itself which was held on the second floor of the Wellington Pub, right in the heart of Birmingham. On arrival we were warmly welcomed by Sunny who was making sure everyone received their complimentary drinks before the performance started. Glass of Pepsi in hand we were soon on our way upstairs where we would each receive a slip to fill in. The slips asked for one crazy confession and something inappropriate to write on a dating profile. Not going to lie, my confession was true, Sean's was not (I hope). After handing these in the show began.

The show began with a small introduction from Sunny before the whole cast joined in to warm the audience up for the performance with a quick game. Once we were all loosened up the show could begin.

There were several sketches throughout the night, acted out by various members of the group. They would usually start by asking the audience for a setting or situation and sometimes both. The actors would then have to create a short sketch based on what the audience had supplied them. I'm not sure how they managed to come up with ideas so quickly, and it's anyone guess how they managed to make the show so funny because I doubt I'd do anything other than freeze up had I been put in the same situation. Luckily down to their hours of preparation, the group was ready for pretty much any situation we threw at them. 

Using only the cues we gave them and slips of paper we handed in at the start of the night, the Jumprov group delivered a genuinely funny show in which they played on their own stereotypes. In this show their backgrounds didn't work against them but instead gave them a chance to portray characters which a more white theatre group would probably shy away from.

I thoroughly enjoyed the night and I know Sean did too as he was practically wetting himself beside me. If you are considering going to an improv show, go! In fact go see Jumprov at the Old Joint Stock Theatre in Birmingham on the 4th of May! You can find more information here.

Thanks again to the Jumprov group for such a fantastic evening!

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