Students go `Nutz’ in Improv Show

Jennifer Bernardo

“Deez Nutz,” a one-hour improv act will be featured every Thursday starting March 29 in the Studio Theatre of the GCC Auditorium. Creator and acting Theatre Guild president, Lilit Manvelian says that the all-student production was put together to raise funds for the Theater Guild.

Fourteen students, including nine veteran comedians from last year’s show, will each have a chance to show off their comedic talents for six weeks. The improv act is similar to the TV show “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?” and calls for audience participation.

The improv act premiered on Dec. 2000 and was a success, Manvelian said. The tickets for the first show were sold out, and tickets for the second show were oversold. Manvelian is currently acting first and second vice president, which makes her responsible for fundraising and publicity. She said that she came up with the idea of an improv show when she was watching “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?” She figured that an improv show would be a perfect fundraiser because of its low production costs – no costumes or sets would be needed.

Manvelian said the Theatre Guild depends on their shows to raise funds for their upcoming projects which normally entails royalty, costume and set materials costs. The musical “Kiss Me, Kate” for example, will require a huge amount of funds for royalties alone. The fundraisers are a welcome addition to the monies received from each show’s ticket sales and advertising in the show programs,” said Manvelian.

“We need as much money as we can get so I try as hard as I can to raise funds,” said Manvelian. Last semester, Manvelian gathered a group of 10 people from the Guild to sit in for “Audiences Unlimited.” They managed to raise $120 and were awarded two Britney Spears concert tickets each.

However, not all fundraisers are successful. Manvelian said that sometimes profits fail to meet expectations after the costs are added up.

Manvelian said that the improv show raised $100 last year. There were only two shows that year as opposed to the upcoming six this year. This show will also be presenting six new performers.

“Deez Nutz” will run from noon to 1 p.m. for six Thursdays with the last show on May 3. Tickets will be sold at the door for $2 each. The Studio Theatre seats 50 people.

The veteran performers are: Robin Andrews, R.B. Dilanchian, Christopher Filippi, Steve Gonzalez, Stephanie Johnson, Sarkis Khachmanan, Lilit Manvelian, Aaron Moe and Juan Solis. The additions to the act are: Shade El-Farra, Benjamin Mangallanes, Tanya Fernley, Kris Rubio, Halleigh Grate, and host, Jeffery Bryson.