International feast of Impro starts this weekend

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IF YOU can’t get enough of Eurovision, then the coming weekend’s “2016 Improvision Song Contest” may hit the spot.

Improvision Song Contest
Improvision Song Contest

“Improvision” marks the start of “Improvention 2016”, which will run for a week from this Saturday. An international festival of unscripted theatre, with performers and directors from Sweden, Austria, France, Israel, USA, Taiwan, Singapore, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, United Kingdom & Australia, it’s an initiative of Canberra’s Impro ACT.

This year they’re presenting over 30 shows with performers and directors from Sweden, Austria, France, Israel, USA, Taiwan, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Australia. Unlike previous festivals which have roamed around Canberra, this festival will stay firmly at The Street, with daily performances.

Dedicated to the art of unscripted theatre, “Improvention” is one of the largest showcases of spontaneous performance, anywhere and includes theatre shows, workshops and convention sessions all held in Canberra. A look at the website ( will give you an idea.

On Frida July 8, for instance, in “Echo & Fear of the Unknown”, a  double bill from USA and Canada, a large ensemble cast perform  American director Domeka Parker’s “Echo”, followed by an Edgar Allan Poe-inspired, performance from Canada’s Amy Shostak, “Fear of the Unknown”. On the same night “Swipe Right”, directed by Camilla Percy of Brisbane’s ImproMafia, shows friendship and dating from the perspectives of different women.

The week winds up on July 9 with the Canberra Impro Challenge Grand Final Double Bill, 7.30pm, billed as “the impro event of the year” as performers compete to become the Canberra Impro Challenge Maestro for 2016.

Before the Grand Finale, will be a special treat in the form of Perth improviser, Glenn Hall, presenting “Yes”, in which some of the world’s most inspiring improvisers allow their peers to create fiction from each other’s true personal stories.

2016 Improvision Song Contest at the Street Theatre, 7.30pm this Saturday, July 2.   Canberra Impro Challenge Grand Final Double Bill, 7.30pm, Saturday, July 9.  Both part of “Improvention 2016,” at The Street Theatre, July 2-9, details and bookings to and 6247 1223. 


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Helen Musa
“CityNews” arts editor

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