Haunted ghost tours in Baltimore seem like a lot of work, going from place to place. In an effort to find a way for my ghosting experience to be a little less active, I talked to Kim Le - one of the creators of an improvised show called GHOST PARTY.
Read on below for a transcript of our conversation:
Tell us all about GHOST PARTY. How might you describe your show to someone who knows nothing about improv?
GHOST PARTY is an interactive, spooky, unscripted pop-up comedy play in which the audience and actors are all acolytes of a coven, led by hosts Beatrice and Derek (characters played by myself and Marty McGuire, respectively). The storyline of each show varies, depending upon the reason for the season, but often features high-spirited, macabre parlor games. Sometimes the theater unexpectedly turns into a haunted house!
If you want to see a show that is gleefully, wantonly silly and not quite anything else you might see on any other stage in Baltimore (improv or no), and will literally never be seen again after its nights conclusion, go see this show. Look for our shows on the calendar around major holidays, including Tax Day!
This upcoming GHOST PARTY episode is themed after "The Ides of March." There will be betrayal, at multiple levels. There will be schemes! And there will be zines - actual content put together by ourselves and friends, and that we're selling both during and after the show. Price is pay what you can, with all proceeds going back into the Baltimore Improv Group to fund even more silly content.
For the more knowledgeable improv crowd, what do you hope they'll take away from the show?
GHOST PARTY (which, by the way, should be always typed in all caps like an anguished soul screaming into the void) is essentially a half-improvised, half-devised play.
We get together in a room and pitch ideas for a show based on a theme, and sort of plot out a loose skeleton of what the storyline might be. Then we come up with short form games that could potentially help us advance that narrative, and stitch them all together.
The main lesson Iâve learned from working on GHOST PARTY (which really has been a labor of love for myself and its co-creators, Marty McGuire and Julia Hall) is the sheer, blind joy that results from applying the basic rule of improv ("yes, and") to things outside of just improv scenework.
No idea is too stupid or insane to put into a GHOST PARTY show. Yes, I can totally drive to a flea market in Essex to procure a terrifying looking doll, to then give over to my team of frighteningly eager improvisors to make "improvements," all for a ten-second bit at the end of a show that will happen once and never again. Yes, we can lure audiences backstage to tour the "murdershop."
Yes, we can fill a portable toilet with dry ice and invite audiences to sit on it! Every time we develop these shows, everyone on board is often screaming "yes, and" in a way that I have not encountered in any other context, improv or no.
I guess, in summary: you, too, can build a cult, via the magic of improv!
Video courtesy of Jessie Delaplaine, from the 2018 Valentine's Day GHOST PARTY show: https://www.instagram.com/p/BfM064-HKbU/
GHOST PARTY presents "The Ides of March" at The BIG Theater on Friday, March 15th at 10 pm. Visit our calendar and ask our staff about future performances.
Various BIG members and friends contribute to the blog. Enjoy!