NACOGDOCHES, TX (KTRE) - Since middle school, Connor Morrison has been in interested in improv and theater.
“A lot of my time in theater has been improv work,” Morrison said.
Fast forward to his college years, the senior discovered the Improv Troupe about a year ago at Stephen F. Austin University.
“Eventually when I heard that there was an improv troupe on campus, I was like I have to do this,” Morrison said. “And so I went to a couple of workshops and then whenever auditions came around I auditioned my first time and I got in.”
Morrison and the President of the Troupe Mickey May said there’s a growing trend in the number of colleges participating in improv troupes. Colleges across the country are creating forums for students to take part in improv.
“Improv is something we have been doing since we have been kids,” May said. “But we just called it playing pretend. I think college students are doing it because it’s a way to express themselves creatively. It’s a safe space to make mistakes.”
May said participating improve also helps her and her fellow students alleviate stress.
“I know for me humor has always been a coping mechanism when things are kind of a little rocky in my life,” May said. “So this is a great way to use that to bring something good out of the stress and chaos.”
Morrison said perhaps another main reason colleges see more participation in improv could be due to trends in mainstream media.
Improv is a relatively a new thing," Morrison said. “But our generation grew up like Who’s Line Is It Anyway? SNL, and so watching those especially shows like Parks and Rec and The Office, a lot of that stuff is improv. And so we grew up knowing that we can be silly and it can be appropriate.”
May said they annually take part in competing against other college and also host a number of charity events to benefit the community.