Wednesday, January 16, 2013

To Sketch or Not To Sketch

I recently got onto a sketch team. It was kind of an out of the blue thing with a classmate at the PIT. I had no expectations and told him I had never done sketch before.

We had a three hour rehearsal where we just kind of brainstormed ideas and stuff. Read scripts and just talked about what we were going to do at the shows and what the plan was. We did a tiny improv thing that kind of didn't gel but I think it was because people weren't in the mood to improv.

After the three hour rehearsal, I basically thought on the ride home how to phrase a message to the great guy who asked me on the sketch team to no longer be on the sketch team.

Here's the one thing I don't like about improv whenever I watch it. Whenever someone is obviously trying to be funny. That just kills me. A person making a kind of side joke or winking at the audience is just revolting to me, and I use that word sparingly.

So to brainstorm what would be funny or wouldn't kind of rubs me the wrong way. Alot of the improv I do happens to be funny, but it's not trying to be funny. Sometimes I toss a jokish thing out there and then the process itself makes me wanna vomit in my mouth.

I would not call myself funny. Put me on a mic and I'm not funny.

It's weird because with Sketch, it feels nothing like improv. I feel like an actor working on no-budget films and projects. That in itself brings up bad memories. I went to college for Film with a minor in theatres. So, I've done a  lot of no-budget stuff.

Here's the one commonality  (noted this is a crass generalization because I'm not on multiple sketch teams) between what I know of sketch vs what I know of student films. Lot of wasting time.

As an improv person, my time is limited to improv doing and improv watching. I can barely schedule rehearsals. The concept of 2 three hour rehearsals in two days blows my mind. Which was what the sketch team was going to do. I remember films taking 12 hours and never getting to my scene. Getting to rehearsal on time only to find that it was cancelled or that I wasn't needed.

I think the major problem I saw, and this is selfish of me, was that idea's and stuff was already out there. Sketches were cast. The sketch team had 12 people. 12 ideas meshing into each other just seems overboard. Kids in the Hall, UCB, Mr. Show, Monty Python, kind of had half that. I'm guessing because of scheduling and not making it chaotic.

In other words, I may never do sketch again. I'm a doer. If I have a massive idea that's amazing, then I film it. Get some friends and do it in a day. Done. I hate to say it but I may never do sketch.

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