Wow that was quite a weekend!!!
Many thanks to everyone involved in watching, working, volunteering, performing, watching, dancing, glow stick waving and more!
The weekend was made up of a team of 100s of people so I can’t name check everyone but I want to let everyone know that it meant a huge amount to me and everyone in Hoopla and we really appreciate everyone getting involved to such an amazing extent.
I only just woke up recently so haven’t checked in with The Miller about how much was raised for charity (Team Margot), but I should know soon and I think it probably smashed all our expectations.
Here’s some extra special thanks for people!
Georgina Roe – thank you for being such an amazing person and looking after me through the festival!
Audience – It was amazing having people watching a show at odd times like 3am on a Friday and Saturday night, and then an epic busy 10am show on Saturday and Sunday! Thank you so much for coming out at weird times and giving us a go. It far exceeded all our expectations so thank you!
Roxanne – A very special member of the audience who made it to every single show over the entire weekend! She started to hallucinate late night Saturday and felt it was all part of the experience. We salute you!
Charles Ross – The owner of The Miller, thank you so much for letting us put on our crazy things and taking a chance on this.
James Pain – Also from The Miller, you did an amazing job thank you so much for sorting out everything with council, staffing, acts, me, press, promoting and more. You’re an awesome bloke!
Jen, Jess, Ross, Ollie, Luke and everyone at The Miller – Thank you so much for everything this weekend and always. Working through the night, looking after us during terrorist attacks, you are amazing people and having a drink with you all at 4am was one of my favourite bits of the weekend.
Angela Pollard – Thank you for bringing me chocolate at the best time moments ever and thank you for everything you do with our shows, press, promoting and more. In August it was just an idea on a flip chart paper in a dusty office, and it’s happened!
Myrian Panayi – Thank you so much for doing front of house for a million and two hours and for being so patient and calm and for looking after me when I was tired!
Emily Brazee – Thank you for doing the best and most organised press job ever, you are amazing!
Tim Grewcock – Thank for sorting out our late night shows and inspiring the marathon in the first place with your tales of New York. You have great taste and you were totally right, Spring Watch at 3am is what the crowd needs.
Phil Lunn – Thank you for playing for so many people and for bringing such amazing shows.
Liam Brennan – Thank you for being in the most shows ever over the weekend and for being my on the floor of a pub sleeping buddy.
Rob T and Clusterf**k – Thank you for bring such a great variety of acts!
ACTS AND GROUPS – Thanks for wanting to do it in the first place! I wasn’t even sure if people would want to perform at 3am in the morning, but your enthusiasm was amazing and you brought the most exciting improv I have ever seen. Thanks for doing such a great job and for being so fun to work with.
Method Acting Award for staying in character off-stage: The Bareback Kings.
Staying in role as South London geezers so much that I even thought Rebecca Schuster hadn’t been there all weekend until I realised I’d been talking to her geezer character instead.
The Mega Face Award for late night fun: Hot Morris.
Providing improvised Morris dancing to the masses! Morris Dancing is BACK in the cool books of the UK.
The Spirit of Hoopla award: Kathy and Unai in the morning.
When I first announced the marathon I thought NOBODY would want the 8am slots on Saturday or Sunday morning. Instead Kathy and Unai immediately emailled and said they wanted BOTH of them for an early morning breakfast show, which they then run both days even after being there late night before, and even put on cream teas. They were upbeat and cheerful just when the weekend needed it!
The Merchandise award: Kathy and Unai in the morning.
I’ve never seen a one off show with it’s own mugs, badges, signs, fan club and more before, but I like it!
The Higher State of Consciousness Award: Dave Waller.
At 5am Dave played whale music mixed with hip hop while Tim Grewcock run a guided meditation through a loudspeaker while we played with lights and sound to an audience of three people including the manager of the Miller. Thank you Dave!
The Community Spirit Award: Phil Lunn’s Hoopla Village Hall Choral Society.
20 people up on stage, together for the first time, at 11:30am on a Saturday morning improvising together as a choir. Very beautiful moment thank you Phil!
The Roof Raiser Award: The Dreaming.
This is a really incredible show. Two people (Alex Fradera and John Agaiou) with the most big and physical improv show I have ever seen. Incredibly funny and gripping and PASSIONATE!
The Audience Participation Award: Improvised Crystal Maze.
This HAS to happen again! Audience members complete crystal maze puzzles improvised out of thin air.
The Innovation Award: Dark Matters.
This was one of my favourite moments of the festival, put together by people who I think have only been doing improv with us for a year or so. An improvised shadow puppet show. It was their first time putting it on, and only 10 minutes, and yet it was the most professional and well executed show I have seen in ages. Put together with a real love and care that translated into the cast members who had a sense of care and playfulness and love for each other that inspired one audience member at the end of the festival to say that it summed up how to do improv: “love each other even when in shadows”.
The International Award: Kevin Miller with History Under the Influence.
This was an incredible show. Kevin (from Hideout Theatre Texas) put together a cast of people he had only just met and put together an incredibly fun narrative show.
The National Rail Award for furthest traveled: Direct Theatre. Next time I see you I will hopefully have slept enough to have a personality and social skills and be able to say hello properly! Thank you for coming and weaving your fish and chip shop magic!
Legends of Improv Award: Stephen Frost, Steve Steen, Alan Marriott, Phil Whelans, Dylan Emery and Suki Webster: You all inspired me when I was first starting in improv, with teaching, shows, Comedy Store Players, Whose Line and more. Seeing you perform at Hoopla was an honour and a pleasure thank you!
Our regular groups and teachers: Thank you so much I’m so lucky to have you in my life and Hoopla you are so great and lovely to work with thank you so much! You hold this altogether so thanks for sticking with us!
We’ve asked The Miller if we can do it again next year, probably late September, fingers crossed!
Love each other even when in shadows.
Blog by Steve Roe, Director of Hoopla Impro. Improv courses, shows and improv comedy club in London, UK.