On a weekly basis, 12-16 Auburn students get together to practice improv and make each other laugh in an organization called the Lee County Flannel Club.
The Lee County Flannel Club was founded in 2012, and the students have two to three performances a semester in the theater building’s black box.
Kristina Moccio, junior in communications and president of the club, said she joined after finding the origination on the concourse during O days.
The group meets to practice with one another and become better during games and exercises.
“Most of the time we play games that would never work in front of an audience, but it just helps us get better at listening to each other and building more believable characters and believable relationships.”
During improv, games must not start out intense or there is
“I think improv is just something that is between at least two people, where you create a scene that was never there, and you listen to each other, and you play off each other well,” Moccio said. “You just create something that is fun and hopefully funny – that at least you feel proud that you got to make something up as you go.”
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Julie Waldock, junior in media studies and social media chair for the organization, described shows as exciting because the performers don’t know what they’ll be doing until they’re doing it.
“We always have a lot of fun,” Waldock said. “Before every show, we’ll play some games that are meant to really get us out of our comfort zone, so that we are ready for whatever happens at the show because with improv you can’t plan anything.”
Both Moccio and Waldock described themselves as feeling nervous before their first show in the black box.
“It’s kind of exciting not really knowing and then when you land a joke or something,” Waldock said. “I think I had a pretty good joke my first show, and that was the best feeling in the world.”
Moccio said she still gets nervous, even as president, because the president has the pressure of leading the group.
Waldock said in a recent scene she got nervous and broke character.
Despite setbacks with nerves, Waldock said she loves improv because she loves comedy.
“It can be a very silly art form, which is what we make it
Moccio also has plans to incorporate her improv experience into her future endeavors, especially since she hopes to move to a big city.
“Even if it’s just that I have a nine to five job, and I perform with some friends on the weekends or at nights, I don’t think it’s something I could ever 100 percent give up,” Moccio said.
The name of the organization, Lee County Flannel Club, has been in effect since the organization was founded in 2012, Waldock said. Traditionally, improv troops will pick a name consisting of random words, nouns or adjectives.
“That’s kind of what they were trying to do, they were trying to pick a funny random name, and one day everyone in the troop wore a flannel to practice,” Waldock said.
The group, which has about 15 members currently, has a lot of big personalities, but this doesn’t typically cause problems, Waldock said
“The group as a whole works very hard together and makes a lot of decisions together,” Waldock said.
Moccio said it’s rewarding to see everyone enjoying a show and laughing at the jokes you make.
“It’s the most amazing experience,” Waldock said. “Improv is really just making each other laugh and having a good time. There’s almost never a bad moment; it’s always happy, always fun, always exciting. So from the moment we started, I just kind of fell in love with it.”
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