River Side Valley Players Improv (RSVP) performs live, unscripted theatre. Actors work together to create characters, dialogue, and story with no advance planning. Shows are 100% improvised and inspired by suggestions from the audience.
The troupe performs both short-form style games and Chicago-style long-form theatrical pieces. In short-form improv, the actors ask for a suggestion from the audience before each scene. Each scene is performed with a different set of rules that make doing the scene more challenging – perhaps the scene must be played as if it came from a movie belonging to a specific genre, or the actors must include lines that have been written for them by audience members. Typically shows also feature songs whose lyrics are composed and performed on the spot.
In long-form improvisation, an audience member provides a single one-word suggestion which gets the actors started on a 20- to 25- minute piece which is focused on relationships between the characters. Long-form pieces follow an internal structure that guides the actors, but to the audience they appear as a series of loosely related individual scenes. These scenes often have comedic elements, but can also feature more serious reflections on the human condition.
RSVP performs three times a year on the stage of the River Street Playhouse. In months without shows, the troupe presents free, informal performances on the second Thursday of the month at 7:30 PM in the Sears River Room above CVLT’s lobby (donations are gratefully accepted).
Members of River Side Valley Players are Jenny Barrett, Jennifer Betz, Rollin DeVere III, Mort Goldman, Mark Remley, and Marianne Veniero. The troupe is directed by Tracy Cubbal.