UVU’s first improv comedy club wants you to join

“What’s So Funny?,” UVU’s own improv group,  welcomes anyone to join. Courtesy of Jake Buntjer
“What’s So Funny?,” UVU’s own improv group, welcomes anyone to join. Courtesy of Jake Buntjer

On June 4, UVU welcomed the first performance of the summer from “What’s So Funny?,” the university’s first improv club. Set up similar to the television show Whose Line Is It Anyway?, the club members play different improv games that rely heavily on audience suggestions and participation.

The club’s founder and current president, Reed Parkinson, started “What’s So Funny?” after attending improv workshops held at BYU. He began by asking random students in the Hall of Flags and in various theater classes if anyone would be interesting in starting an improv club. The responses were positive.

“Anyone can join regardless of talent or experience,” Parkinson emphasized in discussing his club.
“The club meets each Wednesday evening from 7-9 p.m. in PS 202 to practice. Anyone is welcome to come and participate or just watch.

Improv games are played and people try to help one another improve their talents. Around half of the club has not had much experience with improv before, but Parkinson said there have been obvious improvements with some players.

“Some people who were quiet at first really open up after a few practices and turn out to be some of the funniest players,” Parkinson said.

The players consist of a very diverse group of students, including majors in Chemistry, Communications, Religious Studies, Film and Parkinson’s own major, Spanish.

“We don’t have a single theater major,” Parkinson said, reiterating the club’s policy of allowing anyone to join.

“What’s So Funny?” performs once a month. Anyone who has attended two of the weekly practices and feels comfortable with performing can be in a show.

Their next performance will be on Friday, July 9, from 7-9 p.m. at the Center Stage Theater in the Sorensen Student Center. Admission is $2 per person or per couple.

While the practices may be a little more liberal, the shows strive to be as PG-rated as possible. The players try to avoid unnecessary sexual references or swearing in the performances in order to encourage a “family-friendly” environment.

Parkinson hopes that “What’s So Funny?” will continue to grow and be supported by the student body. With some players graduating and others joining, he hopes it can sustain itself and become a UVU tradition.

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