Damn Dirty Apes blow it all up at performance

Campus improv group’s first show a success

By Al Stover, Eagle Life Editor

Photo by Anna Mills
Photo by Anna Mills


Stan and Larry were putting together Ikea furniture and reading instructions in Swedish when they were invaded by Carl, a Swedish-speaking alien who accidently shot out Stan’s eye.

Stan and Larry were played by Jared Reyna and Chris Clark while the alien and other sound effects were voiced by Alex Kwamina using a microphone.

This is one of several scenes the Damn Dirty Apes improv group acted out at their first show in the lounge at Morrison Hall, Feb. 15. The group, comprised of Clark, Reyna, Kwamina and Marjorie Loosmore, performed in front of nearly 100 audience members.

The group opened the show with the game “Yay, Boo,” where the audience came up with a word and one actor would say a good thing associated with the word and the audience would cheer, while another actor would say a bad thing associated with the word which would cause the audience to boo.

Other improv games the group performed were “Props,” where the actors grabbed a random object and created a scene, and “World’s Worst,” where the audience would come up with situations and the actors would come up with the most inappropriate things to say.

Although there were some rough moments during the first couple of scenes, the group was able to get good pegs from the audience.

“The beginning was a little rough with ‘Yay, Boo,’ but it progressively got warmer,” Loosmore said. “We got good feedback. The crowd, I loved them.”

In addition to taking suggestions from the audience, the group brought volunteers onstage. One game had teams of two actors hit on the volunteer by forming a pick up line, one word at a time.

Another game they played with volunteers was “Pillars,” where Loosmore and Clark had two audience members sit next to the stage. While they were performing a scene set in Detroit, one of the actors would stop mid sentence and look to the volunteer to provide the next word for their sentence.

EWU student Jake Helm was one of the volunteers for the “Pillars” game. For Helm, the experience of joining the actors in the game was fun and interesting.

“I pretty much did [it] for the ‘What the hell, might as well try it once and see what happens,’” Helm said. “Every once in awhile they would point at me and I was thinking ‘I don’t have anything in my head.’”

Sara Guerra was one of the audience members who enjoyed the group’s performance on stage.

“I feel like they work really hard and have a lot of confidence to stand up in front of all [of] these people,” Guerra said.

After the show was over, the group thanked the audience for attending as well as the crew for helping them.

For the group’s first show, Reyna was surprised but excited to see the large turnout for the group’s first show.

“People were digging us,” Reyna said. “They were laughing at what we were doing. I’ve had three years experience of being on the stage. I haven’t been on the stage in almost two years. I miss it.”

For the future, Reyna said the group is looking to get a set location where they can have a bigger audience and host shows every month.