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Learning to Love “the Actor’s Nightmare” in Wonderstruck Live and Mixed Company

These shows are bringing stage actors and improvisers closer together.

Haley McGee and Raoul Bhaneja. Photo by John Gundy.

Wonderstruck Live
Storefront Theatre (955 Bloor Street West)
Sunday August 30, 8 p.m.
PWYC

Mixed Company
Comedy Bar (945 Bloor Street West)
Monday August 31, 8 p.m.
$12

There’s a twist on the ol’ “forgot your clothes” nightmare, for actors—it’s “forgot your lines,” and it was enshrined in a play about an actor who is dropped into a play without lines or plot: Christopher Durang’s The Actor’s Nightmare.

Some performers, though, learn to love the thrill of having to make it all up on the spot, in improv, a particular form of performer adrenaline addiction. The strange thing in Toronto, however, is how stage actors and comedic improvisers so rarely interact. But a pair of shows—Wonderstruck Live (which ran Sunday), and Mixed Company (which runs tonight)—feature actors improvising plays and pair actors with improvisers in scenes, and work to better blend the two disciplines.

Keep reading: Learning to Love “the Actor’s Nightmare” in Wonderstruck Live and Mixed Company