A small red sign stood, lonely at the entrance to the Young Student Center. “HOMECOMING: THREE WAYS TILL SUNDAY FRIDAY 8:00 NOC,” it proclaimed to people passing by, but it wasn’t the only advertising the day of the show. Half an hour before show time, the entire cast had joined the sign out in front of the Student Center and was loudly talking about how awesome the show was going to be.
People passing were shouted at, with dignity. “Don’t see your girlfriend, come hang out with Three Ways!” A student with a case of Keystone was heckled into coming by an actor who shouted, “Don’t sit in a dark room and drink alone, come get drunk with us!” To each other every few seconds was “Hey, Morgan, what are you doing tonight?” “Well Carrie, I’m going to the super awesome amazing Three Ways Till Sunday improv group tonight!”
It only brought a few people to the performance, but it was a show in itself. A person coming into the show on time would have found it difficult to find a seat. For a person coming in five minutes late, there was a lovely wall they could stand next to, because the Night Owl Café was packed window to window.
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The lights dimmed and two tall men stood center stage in a scene.
“Need a drink?” Billy asked. Morgan replied, “Daiquiri.” The first one stood, moved to make a drink, then spun around shouting “Whoa!” with his fingers as guns pointing at Morgan.
Morgan replied in kind with a shout and armed himself. Ryan, another cast member, walked into the scene with a “Hey guys… Whoa!” and armed himself too.
The entire cast joined the scene in roughly the same fashion, until everyone in Three Ways Till Sunday was on the stage, pointing at each other in a hilarious tension that ended with a bang and everyone falling down dead, save for Ryan.
He looked around, then looked straight at the audience and said, “Hi everyone, I,” he looked around, “am Three Ways Till Sunday. I hope you enjoy the show!” And he sprinted off.
The next skit was introduced by Billy and John as “Interrogation,” in which they were the cops and Carrie was the perpetrator. Carrie would be out of the room with her ears plugged while they asked from the audience for a victim, how the victim was killed, and where they were killed.
The victim became Carmen Sandiego, with a magnifying glass, on the moon. Once the information was gathered Carrie joined John and Billy on stage and the skit commenced.
She coolly strode onstage with the investigators, and sat in the chair in between the two. Then they were on her, as the most stereotypical police officers they could be, complete with New York accent. “Why, how?” John proclaimed out, “Where in the world did you find her?” With the smile of one who figured it out, Carrie replied, “Carmen Sandiego wasn’t that difficult to find.” Check. “Oh!” Billy said, “But why did you do it the way you did? Like…like a little kid to an ant!,”
Carrie replied with the same smile and said, “The magnifying glass was tough, it kinda took a while.” After she figured out the question the audience erupted in applause.
Carrie was picking up on every clue and figuring out the answers surprisingly quickly.
The location was tough, and it wasn’t helping that on either side of her, John and Billy were whispering in her ears.
After a few dead ends John said, “I just don’t understand how you got there, I thought NASA wasn’t doing this anymore,” and Billy said, ”Did you think that in space we wouldn’t hear her scream?”
After this she understood, and she answered, “I didn’t think you’d find her there.” The show continued along this standard of hilarity, with everyone in the audience enjoying themselves. Every skit was good, but one stood out because it had half the audience tearing with laughter.
The game was called “Sound Effects,” when two audience members came up and made sound effects for the scene. The cast dispersed into the crowd to find two “volunteers.” One member of the cast asked “Who spilled their drink before? You? Oh, you’re definitely doing this.”
He and his friend, each with a fitted flat-brimmed hat, joined the stage. They looked as at home there as they would at an art gala, which made the skit ten times better. Morgan and Dan were playing taxidermists, which calls for some gross sound effects.
The best part was the timing of the action compared to the sound, very similar to those old Japanese horror films that were dubbed to English.
The show ran almost twenty minutes late, but no one seemed to mind. Finally, to an outrageous amount of applause, the cast took a bow and joined friends in the audience.
Augustus Stahl can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org