Lindsay has done a lot for The Bad Dog. She’s been a performer in shows like Theatesports and Hot Doctors in Love. She’s been a creator and producer on shows like Alley of the Dolls. Most recently, she’s been helping to create new improvisers as a teacher in our youth program. Lindsay is always the first to throw herself into the strange of a scene and has a penchant for turning left-field offers into gold. She’s the perfect example of someone who really listens on stage, remembering strange details from early on in a show and recalling them later to pay off the show. Not only a regular to Theatresports, Lindsay can also be seen in the Narrative Studio 4 show, Spooksburgh.
How long have you been improvising for? Where did you get your start?
Formally since 2003 when I started classes at Second City and performing at the Bad Dog Theatre, but I can remember doing improv exercises as far back as 1993, at Prairie Theatre Exchange in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
Have you ever had a game-changing moment as a performer?
I’d been struggling with the concept of “Day of Days” for ages, you know like, “Why are we seeing this scene? What makes this day so important?”. I felt like the onus was on me to “create” something, like I had to force a huge moment into a scene, or a big declaration, in order for it to mean anything. And then I’d get frustrated because I was forcing it. It wasn’t until David Shore’s Harold class where I realized I didn’t have to “make something happen” In a scene- something was already happening. I just had to be present in the scene and listen, and trust my scene partner, and then it was just like falling off a log.
Who is someone you really admire as a performer?
There are so many people. Rob Norman is so switched on when it comes to game of the scene stuff, and he’s so clever, but then all of a sudden, he’s having this super vulnerable, honest moment on stage, and you’re like “Where did that come from?”. I love watching Lisa Merchant, too. The depth of character she can create in two seconds flat makes me think “You’re a wizard, right?”. And I always love everything Jan Caruana does onstage. I mean, she’s 100% committed to the moment, all the time. Just perfection.
If you could suddenly gain a new improv skill, what would you pick?
The ability to fade into the wall when asked to do a gibberish game.
Any advice you’d give someone who’s just starting out in improv?
Here’s advice I wish I would have gotten when I was starting and I was very cynical: When people say take classes, they mean it. It’s for your own good. But take classes everywhere. See improv. Perform as much as you can, with as many different people as you can. You’re going to roll your eyes, but everyone has something to teach you. Be open, listen, and then trust your gut. Also, don’t be a jerk.