Five performers stood on stage at their stands, each reading from a script. The comedy sketch performed was called “I’m a Dancer” and was about a girl who shows up to a ballet class and obviously thinks she is a much better dancer than she is. We know this because during what was supposed to be a dance break, the narrator who introduced the sketch simply read out that she moved around without grace while the performer stood, scanning her lines to know what was next.
This was part of an event last Friday evening in Tyrell Hall. It was a comedy sketch show entitled “Delightfully Sketchy” which was written, directed and produced by Maggie O’Gara. Upon entering the show she handed audience members a list of sketches with a note at the bottom explaining that what would be performed were works in progress and they very much felt that way.
The entire performance was shorter than an hour and featured nine sketches. All of them were simple but enjoyable. For example, the first one of the night, “Crash Into Me,” featured a teenage son apologizing to two very understanding parents for totaling the family’s Subaru, which they had owned for years. But when they find out that a beautiful Porsche was damaged in the incident, it quickly turns into a yelling match.
The actors were all people who are currently or formerly involved in TU theatre, and they overall did a good job. Before the sketch, a narrator would announce the title of the piece and each cast member would give the name and appearance of their character. During the sketches they would just read lines out of a booklet on the stands in front of them, every now and then looking at each other or making an expression.
Even when a character left the scene, the actor would not move from their spot. It was pretty obvious that their familiarity with the material was limited, but that did not stop them from being able to perform as best they could. Due to the low-key nature of the affair, it was obvious that they felt very comfortable and were enjoying themselves, even breaking character once to laugh.
Three of the sketches relied entirely on stereotypes. “Don’t Know” featured a valley girl who was very bad at her job as a barista, but certainly felt more fresh than “Hipsters Go Shopping” which involved two characters simply choosing out weird clothing choices that hipsters would make.
The best one of the three was certainly “Fuckyboy” which involves a young 20-something coming out to his parents as the titular fuckboy. It felt very modern with the son complaining that he never texts his Tinder matches back after hooking up with them.
While “Delightfully Sketchy” was obviously a work in progress being tested out, it was most certainly a fun distraction. I am very glad that things like this are happening on campus. In the end, the symbiotic relationship benefited both O’Gara, who wanted to test out her material, and the audience, who wanted to laugh at a live performance on a Friday night.