By Dillon Cassidy
Without further ado, here is the full cast of the inaugural Crowd House Teams.
This is a team of incredibly positive, open minded improvisers who know how to play! I’m very grateful to be coaching these performers who will blend movement and scene work based on light and sound cues used at the whim of the show's tech director. Transitions will be captivating and meaningful without a moment dropped. Our show will be theatrical, engaging, funny, and ready to dip heavy in the sauce of true absurdity!
Dillon’s New Media Moguls
Traditional media is becoming a smaller and smaller portion of our diet. We’re in an era of new media, and there is not a central hub for content. This ensemble will be creating a variety of new media (youtube haikus, meme formats, viral content, digital shorts, etc). Apart from that we’ll be doing some really good cerebral improv and exploring intersections of live performance in the digital world.
Nathalie’s Experimental Improv
I like weird. I like to sit in weird. I like to fuck with weird. I think we can be weird AND relevant AND inoffensive, and still put on a damn good improv show. We will be developing a format as a team, and exploring a range of ways that you can deliver this show to an audience while being seemingly new and strange, but remaining palatable.
Jerwin Gabriel Santiago
This team is made up of folks of varying backgrounds and sensibilities. As a coach, I'm excited to work with them to make sketch shows that blur the lines of reality and genre, and exist primarily to delight. I'm familiar with some of the ensemble members and am new to others, and I'm really excited to see how they combine their unique skills to create our house shows.
This team will be working to push the limits of group mind. We’re going to use a foundation of trust, freedom from judgement, and sense of play to elevate our cast from individuals to ensemble.
Matt Roarty’s Master Improvisers
This ensemble will work to completely eschew thematic, dialogue, or verbal transitions and callbacks and instead rely on movement and sound to go from scene to scene and tie ideas together. But in a way that's dope as hell!
Now for digestion.
This was hard. Like really hard. On a personal level, this has been something that has been an enormous source of anxiety for me. I take no joy in deciding which of my friends and peers get to do this and which don’t |sad emoji|. I have personally already lost a fair deal of sleep over the last two nights thinking about friends that we couldn't place because they didn’t fit the project, someone else had a slightly better audition, or any of the other million factors that went into these decisions.
On a professional level, this was hard because it was a big choice. This is a big directional move for the theater, and there’s never any certainty that it was the right choice. The Crowd has, by some miracle of God, been able to skate by largely on the community’s good graces, and this is one of the first choices we made that we knew would inevitably end up hurting people’s feelings.
But on to why we decided to make this choice. Ultimately, we felt that developing a program that rewards people who spend time with us and want to invest in our space will help develop a richer and more robust community. The Crowd is our community. If you are reading this, you are a part of the Crowd. In the short three years of operation we’ve already had a whole generation of performers grow with us and move on to other things. Part of this is because the Crowd is awesome and our performers are awesome, and they deserve these incredible opportunities, but the other part is that we, as an organization, didn’t have a good way to keep people invested. That’s what we’re hoping to do with this. We want to open the door for people to grow with us, and stay with us. Chicago has a lot of opportunities, so we’re thankful to those that decide to spend their time with us.
July 13th, 10PM - Opening Night
July 20th, 10PM - Opening Night 2
House Team Night || $8 || Free for Patreon Members.
Proceeds pay the coaches so the performers don’t have to.