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They've Got Character

People's Improv Theatre group Possible Side Effects displays aptitude for characters in long-form performance.

The hallmark of Possible Side Effects, an improv group at the People’s Improv Theatre, is its members’ ability to find characters and play them against each other in multiple combinations throughout a performance.

Seen February 23, the group depicted what could have been an entire small town -- albeit a demented one -- with a new mother and her husband, a manicurist, a hired killer, a deli worker and a babysitter. The group members playing these roles are adept at making their characters unique, but also work together well to make the situation that finds them interacting funny for an audience.

Seeking advice, the new mother (Rhea Dates) turns to the manicurist (Eli Newell), who gets a laugh by offhandedly recalling her 13 children and their fates (two died, one went to prison, one ran away, etc.)

By the end of their performance, the group is able to take the proceedings to such a level that they can juggle alternating two-person scenes with these characters and not lose any of the threads.

Possible Side Effects have a command of improvisation that is clearly evident, and have the chemistry and rapport between the players to go anywhere they choose, especially in character.

Possible Side Effects performs at the People’s Improv Theatre 8 p.m. Thursdays in February and March.



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