DIRTY LAUNDRY Celebrates The 20th Year Of Professionally Making Things Up
No Scripts on The Night! Or Ever! What does it feel like to walk on stage for two decades and have no idea what you're going to say? "It's riveting!" says Co-Founder and returning Artistic Producer Karen Johnson-Diamond: "What draws us to live improvisation is the fear and the risk, like leaping out of a plane." Johnson-Diamond jokes. "The cardinal rule of improv is to take care of your scene partner, so to use the analogy, you get to jump out of the aircraft with gusto and you know that you'll be caught."
Dirty Laundry Calgary is our city's only completely live, completely improvised soap opera and was founded in 1999 by Johnson-Diamond and Elinor Holt. The company partnered with the well-loved Lunchbox Theatre in 2008 to perform on their Monday evenings, and have been working with them ever since. In 2014, Dirty Laundry began a new program for young improvisors called Dirty Laundry: The Next Generation, which includes mentorship for performers ages 15-18 and the opportunity to showcase their skills in their own Sunday-night series. The production team of Dirty Laundry is also currently running a GoFundMe Fundraising Campaign to properly execute the mentorship program. The company brings on a multitude of exciting guest performers, like our Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Andrew Phung (Kim's Convenience, Little Italy), Shaun Johnston (Heartland, Wynonna Earp), Christy Bruce (A Handmaid's Tale, Blind Date), Dave Kelly (Breakfast Television, Dave Kelly Live!)From super heroes to television network executives to wine magnates, Dirty Laundry works to diversify and invigorate each year with new themes and settings.
Karen Johnson-Diamond is joined this year by Co-Producers Chris Enright (a founding member of the original Dirty Laundry Company) and Lara Schmitz, as well as six new cast members for both The First Generation Company and the emerging Next Generation Company. Both casts will have the same theme, so Dirty Laundry's mentorship continues as the performers will crossover. The theme of this season is Dirty Laundry Goes To Camp!
"Remember when you had a crush on the canoe instructor? And everyone was sure they saw Bigfoot? Was there really a ghost haunting cabin 13? Pack your sleeping bags, bring your swimsuits, and get ready for a cell phone-free summer of crafts, sing-alongs, and new best friends! Rain or shine, you're stuck here for the best (or worst) week of your life! Pack your bags- we're going to camp! Kumbaya!"
The First Generation's first episode is on October 21st, 2019 at Lunchbox Theatre and runs every Monday until December 16th (except November 18th) and every Monday from February 17, 2020 to May 11th (except March 16th). The Next Generation's first episode is on October 27th, 2019 and runs every Sunday until December 8th (except November 17th) and every Sunday from February 23rd, 2020 to April 5th (except March 15th).
Tickets are $16, or $10 for students, and can be purchased at the door or online. Play Passes are available with a 10-show deal for $100 and for more information, you can head to www.dirtylaundrycalgary.com. You can also find Dirty Laundry on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.