FST Improv is now in its 19th year and has more than 20 members! To help you get to know the improvisers better, we’re going to be sitting down with cast members and picking their brains about improv, taking risks, and their lives offstage. Our first victim was Natasha Samreny.
FST Improv performs every Saturday and select Fridays in FST’s Bowne’s Lab Theatre. To see what shows are lined up for this weekend, click here.
How did you first get into improv?
After graduate school, I got an internship at The Second City working with their historical archives. Initially, I had no idea how important they were to the origin of improvisational theatre. While working there, I had access to discounted classes. Once I started, I was hooked.
You say that your style of comedy mixes “cheeky observations of life, relationships, and your mixed, multi-cultural upbringing as a military brat.” Can you expand on that?
I think people are funny, and most of the time it is unintentional. Comedians who are trying to understand their own imperfect selves are the funniest to me. I guess it’s because they don’t seem like they’re trying to get a laugh, they are just trying to understand what exactly this life is about. And others can relate.
One of my oldest bits revolves around how strangers think they know me at a first glance. I look ethnically ambiguous, I sound American, but I was raised Mormon. Why can’t I be all three? I like to explore our anxieties about the little things in life and misunderstandings of each other. Once you open it up, it’s fun to let the air out of it and dance around.
You have performed at festivals in Boston, London, and Edinburgh. What were those experiences like? Do you have any exciting stories from your experiences?
Every experience has been different, delightful, and challenging in its own way. One of my favorite experiences was performing at Boston’s Comedy Arts Festival with my sketch group, “Millennial Fresh.” We had worked so hard to get there, but on the day before we flew up, Irma was heading down to Florida. It felt like we were leaving our family to brave a massive storm of uncertainty to go make strangers laugh. It was a fun yet weird weekend. But we did it, and had a blast!
Edinburgh was brilliant! It had been a goal of mine for over a year to perform there. I was lucky enough to build an entire trip around the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. I performed stand-up comedy and storytelling in England and Scotland. I backpacked around the UK, hiked through the Highlands, spent several days in Crete, and in between performances, met three amazing women with whom I traveled. That was the best part of that experience – making friends and road-tripping with my talented German, Greek, and Australian artist friends.
What’s the best part about being an FST Improv member?
The friendships that stick.
Watch Natasha and the rest of FST Improv make scenes, songs, and characters up on the spot! FST Improv performs every Saturday and select Fridays in FST’s Bowne’s Lab. For tickets, click here.