harold-night

vimeo

Last night I had the absolute and wonderful joy of performing with the UCB Harold team LANDLORD on a very special day, the anniversary of the last day that Santina Muha walked. Since day one with Landlord I have loved performing with this team because everyone was instantly supportive as if we’d been friends long since being put together by UCB however last night I was lucky enough to be part of one of the biggest and coolest supportive gestures to celebrate life and the triumphant spirit of one person to overcome their adversity and pursue their dreams and succeed in doing so!!! Much love to Santina and showing us how to live life to it’s fullest no matter what happens to change your path towards your dreams. Lucky to be friends with everyone on LANDLORD Devin Field​ Blake Hogue​ Beth Lepley​ Santina Muha​ Timm Sharp​ Jonny Svarzbein​ Jacob Lawrence Wysocki​. If you missed this special Harold last night, you can watch it here: https://vimeo.com/121807066 Timeless black out line!

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Years ago, when Sentimental Lady was on Harold Night, there was a night where Robin Williams came by the theater and asked if there were any improv shows he could sit in on. He didn’t ask in an entitled way. He apologized for asking, seemed to think that the answer would be “no”, and clearly had no idea that he was surrounded by people that had their formative years filled with his work. He had no idea that everyone he was interacting with was in awe of the fact that they were talking to Genie, or Mork, or any number other roles that we grew up with. So, obviously, we said yes.

Backstage, before the show, we all chatted, trying to pretend we weren’t blown away that he’d want to play with us. I remember we talked about history in general and the World War 1 Christmas Truce specifically. He was fascinated by the fact that even in the middle of trying to kill each other, those soldiers wanted to find a way just to be human together. It was kinda heady talk for twenty minutes before an improv show.

He kept asking us, making sure it was ok that he sat in. It was.

At some point, someone asked him what brought him to UCB that night. He said that he had come down from San Francisco for work and to visit his daughter. She was in the audience, and he wanted to perform for her.

We all nodded. That made sense.

Then he went on. He told us that he wanted to prove that he could be at UCB…. The last time he had come around, he had been drinking and in a bad place. He wasn’t sure how he had come across. And he wanted to be there that night, sober, to show himself that he could. He said: “it’s important to me to be around younger generations making comedy. It gives me great joy.” I think about that all the time. Just being around people that were passionate about the thing that he was passionate about, to see people doing the things that he had been doing for thirty years, made him happy. And, at that point, he had shaken one monkey off his back, and this low stakes improv show, where he’d play both the pope and a peeping tom, was proof to himself that he could do it. And then we went on stage and the crowd lost its mind when they saw him and he was funny as fuck.

Before our shows, for the past six years, we do a warm up called thumper. Everyone just says some dumb phrase and does some dumb action and we all repeat it, each week adding new ones on to the ones from the week before. His was to throw his hands up and yell “I’m lactating and I don’t care.” We still do it, just as he did, every week.