Monkey business on stage

By David Lim

Clad in their usual brightly-colored shirts, the Scene Monkeys ran down the aisles cheering and jumped on stage to kick off two performances of their annual improv show in Rugby Theater on May 18. In each 90-minute show, the 17 members of the all-student comedy group acted in scenes ranging from a “super indie” beat poetry lounge to a ballet about a frog who couldn’t jump.

The Monkeys started off many of their scenes by asking the audience for ideas. The nearly full auditorium helped concoct a crime that cops Lucas Foster ’13 and David Feinerman ’12 would interrogate Nick Healy ’13 for in the earlier 5 p.m. show. Healy was led out of the room and had to guess on stage that he was accused of speaking French in a barn with a xylophone.

They also drew inspiration from each other in improv games such as “Growing, Shrinking Machine” where performers added themselves to the act one by one, creating a new scene with every new actor. Hank Doughan ’12 started off brushing his teeth when Healy jumped in and the scene changed to the duo attempting to eat a massive cob of corn.

After Tara Joshi ’14 and Haleh Kanani ’12 also stepped in, Natalie Epstein ’12 presided over a couples game show between the girls and the pair of Doughan and Healy. Then, the performers left the scene in the order they came on stage and the machine “shrunk” back down to a lone Doughan brushing away.

In the 7 p.m. show, Epstein leap-frogged over Joey Lieberman ’14 in a ballet with a frog who can’t jump.

Towards the end of the show, the Scene Monkeys lined up in a row and answered questions from the audience. However, this was no ordinary Q&A session, as each Monkey pitched in one word to every sentence they answered.

“Periwinkle must be the best color because it sparkles,” the Scene Monkeys answered when asked what their favorite color was.

In typical Monkey fashion, they closed both shows by inviting the audience to come up with the subject of a music video. While four Monkeys grabbed mics and belted out their tunes, the rest danced it out behind them to the tune of the new song “The Petting Zoo.”