Roaring With Laughter | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Roaring With Laughter

Over the past five years, the actors of the Off Kilter Comedy Troupe—Jackson's longest running comedy group—have developed an amazing skill.

They are all incredibly robust laughers.

There were only nine rehearsing on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, but Fenian's Pub shook as they roared at the performance of their fellows.

Comedy is tough when you are writing the script as you go along. Laughter tells the actors that they are hitting the right jokes, and it warms up the audience, as it would take a callous heart not to laugh.

"There are always so many more variables with improv," says Beth Kander, troupe parliamentarian. "And if you don't trust the people you're up there with, it's an even more nerve-racking experience. So we just learn to read each other, trust that the other person is going to feed us the information we need, laugh it off, and still make it funny if we can't get the answer and drive the joke home."

Off Kilter was rehearsing for their annual fall show at Hal & Mal's Saturday, Sept. 13, where they will join five other improve troupes of the Southeastern Comedy Alliance. The competition hails from Atlanta, Lafayette, Starkville and Oxford, and they will all bring their own favorite games and skits to share with the other troupes.

The group does not have regular performances this fall, but can be found sometimes in Fenian's Pub, Lemuria and other venues around town, occasionally charging a cover—like this weekend—to raise money for charity or for new T-shirts for the group. Opie Cooper, the education coordinator and a founding member, also holds improv classes for people not yet comfortable jumping up there.

For upcoming shows and more information contact [e-mail missing] and join their mailing list.

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