‘Improv with the Stars’ honors K-State student battling leukemia

Hannah Hunsinger A On The Spot Improv actor and the Wildcat Mask face off as part of the improv game "Slow-Mo Olympics" during the On The Spot Improv performance in the KSU Ballroom on Monday evening.

The Grand Ballroom in the K-State Student Union filled with
laughter Monday as the K-State improv troupe On the Spot presented “Improv with the
Stars,” a comedic event to honor a K-State student and benefit
cancer awareness.

The show raised nearly $250 in honor of Emily
Mayfield, a sophomore in journalism and mass communications who is battling leukemia, that will be donated to
the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. 

Shelby Storrie, senior in animal science and director of public relations for the troupe, said she was thrilled with the event and
happy to honor her friend who she said, “has always been a huge fan of the troupe.”

“Improv with the Stars” featured a number of improvisation
skits called “games” in which performers acted under a variety of different
cues and rules.  

Megan Weast, sophomore
in life sciences, was particularly intrigued by the game known as “Moving
Body.” This was a scene involving two performers manually controlling the limbs of a
partner for the duration of the skit.

“I really liked watching them move their partners’ arms,”
Weast said. “It’s always really fun to see how the troupe members will react to
someone else moving their arms and legs for them.”

One of the troupe members found themself under control of Lee
Carlson, an automotive technology student at Manhattan Area Technical College,
who was picked from the audience as a volunteer.

“I didn’t really expect stage fright until I saw everybody, and then I thought, ‘What am I doing up here?’” Carlson said.

Carlson said as the skit went on, and as the audience
responded with laughter, it got easier and was a lot of fun.

“The actors were very cool and made it a lot easier,” Carlson said. “I would definitely love to go up on stage again.”

Two of the stars that participated in the evening were the Wildcat Mask and Nathan Spriggs, student body president and senior in agricultural economics. The Mask was a part of a group in a
game called “Conducted Story,” about miniature dragons involved in a
western romance with a Stephen King-style ending.

Spriggs participated in a game called “Two-Line Scenes,” in
which actors were only allowed to say two lines the entire skit, one being a
question and one a statement. He was assigned the statement, “I’m the president.” His utilization of the
line, along with his partner’s “I eat salt,” filled the ballroom with laughs
throughout the segment.

According to troupe member Jordan Crook, junior in
architectural engineering, the group, which usually performs on Tuesday and
Thursday nights in the Little Theatre, has seen their popularity increase.

“Recently we’ve been filling up quite a bit,” Crook said. “It
used to be that there would maybe be 20 or 30 people in the audience, but our
last few shows we’ve had crowds of about 100 to 150 people show up.”

He said the troupe appreciates and enjoys the support, and it was this support that led them to arrange for the larger venue in
the Grand Ballroom for this event.