Improv comedy group brings laughs to campus.
Christine Ramstad | Managing Editor
Many Bethel students wandered around campus in formal attire and danced at the homecoming banquet Sept. 30.
Elsewhere, students in rows of chairs crowded CC312, listening attentively as the scene was set for a speed dating skit that a group of students were about to perform. Within moments, chaos ensued and the room exploded with laughter as one of the performers put his entire sock in his mouth.
That evening Bethel’s improvisational comedy troupe, The Irrelephant Intelephants, performed for its largest audience yet after forming the club in fall of 2014.
“Improv is the most basic form of acting. It’s about creating something out of nothing but also being able to draw order from the chaos,” Bethel senior and improver Josh Ochoa said. Ochoa has been performing improv for 8 years.
The club meets once a week and runs drills and improvisational games to keep the actors on their toes.
“It’s a full hour and fifteen minutes of laughing once a week,” Mckenna Woetzel, junior education major said. “It doesn’t feel like a commitment because it’s something I enjoy doing.”
Nathan Strecker, a Bethel junior and biblical and theological studies major, founded the club.
“The most exciting part of this club and group of people is how friendly everyone is,” Strecker said. “We always have laughs together, even when we’re not acting.”
Strecker hopes to see the group continue to grow and new members are encouraged to join and participate as they choose.
“It’s completely open for anybody and that’s what we wanted it to be,” Ochoa said. “It’s a fun, open environment for people to come, learn about improv and have a good time. If you don’t want to perform you do not have to, but it’s a great way to build courage.”
The Irrelephant Untelephants performs the games they play in practices.
“There’s a structure. It’s not just nonsense,” Jake Annis, a senior theater major, said. “When a lot of people think improv they think ‘oh, just making stuff up’, and that is apart of it but you can’t just run away with it.”
Publicity for the club’s shows have included what Annis describes as “making a scene in the BC and shouting in the dining center.”
“It’s all about bringing joy to people and bringing laugher to people,” Ochoa said.
November 21st at 8:06 p.m.
December 9th at 7:42 p.m.
Location: Bethel Theatre