All-night Improv: 24 hours of crazy for Improv Nation

I’ve told you somewhat about Improv Nation, how it is structured, how it functions on a week-to-week basis, but there is a lot about this club which really pushes the envelope of improv, improvising new ways to approach improv and grow as a team.  One of the most interesting, tiring, and challenging events that I have ever personally been a part of is the Improv Nation “Big SHooMG,” a 24-hour straight marathon of improv.

The first two rules of the marathon were 1) Do not sleep, and 2) Do not sleep.  The club goes straight through the 24 hours playing every improv game that it has in it’s extensive list of improv games of every type.

Travis Northup, current leader or Emperor of Improv Nation, once said that in 24 hours of improv it will be broken down as such: “You will see 4 hours of good improv, 4 hours of awful improv, and then 16 hours of delirious improv.”

Given the structure and length of the marathon, new games are enacted that use the marathon’s length to challenge improvisers. In one game there is a sort of extended replay where a group of four people do a scene that is two minutes long, and then every four hours after that they replay that scene exactly as they did it the first time, or at least attempt to.  In a twist on the improv game “expansion,” where a 5 second scene is played, and then that same scene is expanded to 15 seconds, 30 seconds, one minute, then two minutes, 24 hour improv takes a 2 minute scene, which several hours later becomes a 10 minute scene, 30 minutes, and finally an hour long.

The second annual “Big SHooMG” is set to happen this upcoming weekend Dec 3 at 5 p.m.- Dec 4 at 5 p .m in the Mary Park Lounge on the SF State Campus. Anyone is free to stop by and watch at any period of the 24-hour marathon to witness the exhaustion and perchance any brilliance that exudes from the improvisers.

Due to funding applications to ASI, Associated Students Inc., this year the school will be purchasing food and energy drinks for the event, which will hopefully slightly take off the edge of doing improv for an entire day.

Regarding the name of the event, every year that it happens one o will be added to the title, and that is why this year’s “Big SHooMG” has two since it is the 2nd annual event.

It is possible that the show will be live-streamed, if so I will be tweeting the link from SpencerTDevine on twitter, or on my Facebook. I will hopefully be filming at the 24-hour event and will try to get something together to even partially show what the event really is like.

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