By Kasey Borduas
A crowd gathered to watch The Hysterics perform stand-up and improv comedy on Friday night at the Stamp Student Union.
According to their Facebook, The Hysterics are the only all-female identifying comedy troupe on campus. They participate in stand up, sketch and improv comedy.
Members Nina Whiting, Emma Bailey, Ida Garfield, Anna Artazova, Megan Barnes and Ambi Narula took to the stage to entertain the crowd. Even though it was a Friday night, they managed to fill all of the seats they set up.
“I do like coming to [The Hysterics’ shows] … it’s been fun and it’s always nice to see comedy,” said UMD junior government and politics major Julian Perez-Garcia.
Narula is also The Hysterics’ co-president, along with Elana Morris, who wasn’t present at the show. Narula kept up her comedic nature during an interview about the group.
“The Hysterics was created last spring during my finals week because clearly I have priorities,” she said sarcastically.
“We were born in May … originally I had a co-founder with me but she left due to personal reasons … I’ve been running it since she left. So, it’s all female, we do improv, stand-up and sketch and we’re working towards our sketch season in the spring.”
While most of the girls had a stand-up set to perform, they also did some improv. A question that may come to mind is, how does one practice something that’s supposed to be unscripted and spontaneous?
“We just play a bunch of games and we do scenes as well. So, however we’re feeling … we just do a bunch of scenes, [see] how we’re feeling it and then depending on how it’s going that could inspire something else. We want everyone involved as much as we can,” Narula said.
Keeping in the spirit of involvement, many of the improv exercises required participation from the audience. One exercise offered dating advice while another asked for a word by which the improvised scene would revolve around.
While the air of the room was filled with fun and laughter, comedy is hard work.
“We meet about 2-3 times a week … [and] if we have a show coming up we’ll meet [for] that whole show week … like every night for like 2 or 3 hours,” Narula said.
The Hysterics will be holding auditions in February at a time and place that will be announced on their social media over winter break.
Featured Photo Credit: Courtesy of The Hysterics’ Facebook page.
Kasey Borduas is a sophomore journalism major and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.