© 2023 WMRA and WEMC
WMRA : More News, Less Noise WEMC: The Valley's Home for Classical Music
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Improv comedy comes to Charlottesville with Colin & Brad

Brad Shwerwood
Brad Shwerwood

“Everything is made up and the points don’t matter.” Those are the only rules on Whose Line is it Anyway, improv comedy on television featuring Brad Sherwood and Colin Mochrie. They’ll be in Charlottesville at The Paramount Theater on Sunday, August 27, for their “Scared Scriptless” show. WMRA’s Chris Boros recently spoke with Brad Sherwood about his career in improv and how he got started.

Brad Sherwood: I first discovered an improv show when I was in college. And I thought, oh man, this is amazing. It's hilarious. It's like a magic act. How are they doing that? And then after college, I moved out to LA to become an actor and I was working in TV production and the guy I was working with said ‘you would be really good at this. You should come check out my improv class.’ And I did and it was like the heavens opened up and the rays of light came and the angels were singing. And I was like, this is what my calling is supposed to be.

WMRA: I've taken some improv classes and it's so much fun. I've laughed so hard that tears are rolling down my face. Was that your experience when you first started doing it?

BS: I find that improv is kind of like the adult version of getting to play like you did when you were kids - cowboys and Indians or pirates to the treehouse. It's like that part of your brain slowly got closed as you became an adult and had to pay bills or do a job. And I think that is sort of the magic of it for the audience that's watching it. And for people that get good at doing improv, that’s kind of a magical transference of childlike goofiness.

WMRA: That’s the reason I think improv is so fun is because it allows adults to be kids again. And as we become older, we for whatever reason stop playing. I don't know why that is.

BS: Yeah, it's true. Not only do you stop playing but you stop keeping your mind open to the idea of yes, anything is possible.

WMRA: You'll be in Charlottesville on Sunday with the “Scared Scriptless Tour.” With your “Whose Line” buddy Colin Mockery. Is the show like “Whose Line” or do you play different games?

BS: Yeah, we play lots of different games. There'll be some they recognize like the sound effect game, but we've sort of craft this show where we give the power to the audience.

WMRA: You’re doing the show Colin Mochrie and Colin is so funny. One clip I go to all the time is his infamous “tapioca moment.”

BS: I need to share this with the audience that could be coming to our show. Colin Mochrie is just innately funny and it’s really annoying because he doesn’t even have to do anything on stage. He just kind of stands there and says two words that don't make sense, makes a face, and the whole crowd falls out laughing. I have to construct these really clever wordy well-constructed sentences with wit and innuendo. I have to work so much harder than him because he just always had the audience on his side. It’s really sort of disgusting. So when they watch, when they come to see the show, they need to notice how hard I have to work to earn their love and how little Colin actually does in the show.

WMRA: Well Brad, this may sound a little cheesy, but I just want to thank you. I go to Whose Line all the time on YouTube still to this day. I always know I'm going to laugh and it's going to make me feel better. So, for what it's worth, thank you.

BS: Oh that my pleasure. You know laughing is so important to people and they sort of lose sight of that in the treadmill of life and that's one of the reasons it’s so great to have pets because you don't realize it but they’re the comedian in your house. They do stupid stuff that makes you laugh and it's so good for your soul to laugh.

Chris Boros is WMRA’s Program Director and local host from 10am-4pm Monday-Friday.