I spent most of this weekend in a town called Borderline, in the company of such upstanding folk as Sal Oon the bar owner, Cecil Schitztoker the German bounty hunter, cattle rustler Stan Pede, sheriff Rusty Badge, and Fruit Palace proprietor Americana Applepie.
I’d found my way to the Improvathon again, that annual marathon of comedy madness that this year took place for 2013 minutes – just over 33 and a half hours to you and me – during which the cast do not sleep and the action of the show just keeps rollin’.
Brought to you by city-based theatre group Impropriety and Canada’s DIE-Nasty, which invented the concept of a long form non-stop comedy soap inspired by the late Ken Campbell, the show started at the Kazimier at 1pm on Saturday and finished at 10.33pm last night, this year with a Wild West theme.
lunactics unforgettable characters, absolutely bonkers storylines, romance, intrigue, a Mick Jagger dance-off and a body count of which the Bard would be envious, it was, as ever something very special indeed.
It would be impossible (and a bit mean) to pick out a highlight of this incredible show (not to mention there was no cast list). But honourable mentions should go to Impropriety’s own Ian Hayles, who killed off his German undertaker character Grey Gardens in one of the show’s most tender scenes, only to come back in the next shift as an anachronistic incarnation of Cleo Laine and scat his way through the rest; the scenery-chewing, coat-swishing Brothers Cortez (RIP); Angie Waller’s brilliant improvised show tune about her character, Rusty Badge; the incredible last-minute rap battle in the 32nd hour by Americana Applepie and heir to the Fruit Palace, Ed Hardy; and the seemingly boundless energy of one of the cast’s most endearing characters, Cecil Schitztoker (“heil five!”).