Mark Metcalf

The not-so-funny side of teenage improv

By - Nov 24th, 2010 04:00 am
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Manuel Marin via Flickr

Tyler White and Nevin Langhus are funny even when they’re talking about the less-than-ideal reality of being high school theater buffs and budding improv comedians.

“In our school, we can’t go around saying we’re performing artists,” says Nevin, “because people are like ‘oh, you’re obviously gay, or something’s wrong with you.”

Off stage, Nevin and Tyler often find their school environment stifling, and on stage, mature topics such as politics are off-limits when they participate in “children’s” shows. At 17 and 18 years old, both young men straddle the line between childhood and adulthood. And as they try to make their way in the performing arts, that invisible line can be infuriating.

“It’s a shame that we’re limiting that [creativity],” says Nevin. “To set limits on it, and say ‘this is a good idea, this is a bad idea, and you can do this and you can’t to that,’ I think is just limiting society as a whole. There’s so much talent and so much possibility being thrown under the covers.”

Both Tyler and Nevin are planning on college next year, Tyler for computer programming and Nevin for International Business. Both dream of a career in theatre, but know that it may never be viable as a bread-and-butter profession.

“There’s a man in the shadows with a knife and he’s like ‘Come here, I’m you’re theatre world!’ and I don’t want to go down that road,” says Nevin. “I’ll do theatre on the side.”

“I’m just doing the best I can for my reality, for my situation,” adds Tyler.

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0 thoughts on “PODCAST: The not-so-funny side of teenage improv”

  1. Anonymous says:

    hi i’m in your mothers class and thanks for the acting tips

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