Monday, November 5, 2012

Improv Comedy Stars on The Friday Zone

Although Will has been a craft kid on The Friday Zone before, Syd has only recently become old enough to participate in taping our local PBS children's show. She was pretty thrilled, then, when the call came out for child actors comfortable doing improv comedy with a professional comedy troupe to tape some segments for the show.

So I dutifully signed both girls up--one an old hand at being filmed, the other a bright, eager newbie--and carted them over to The Friday Zone set. To entertain Sydney while Willow and I read as we waited (first lesson in taping a TV show: be prepared to wait), I gave her my camera. Here's what she captured:
Camera person with The Friday Zone set in the background. My girls were the only children who could not seem to sit still on those cubes on the set--darned little homeschoolers!

backstage--the video screen shows what the camera sees. It's what all the parents watch to see if the camera is getting a close-up of their kid.

Guess what I'm doing the entire time? 

lights setup, and the boom camera that all the kids were fascinated with

the set!!!
Do you ever have those times when you are really hyper-aware of your children's misbehavior? During this mega-taping (segments of eight different episodes, I think?), I thought that I was going to have a stroke. Mixed in with all of these nice, quiet, obedient children, my kids behaved like animals, I thought. They kicked the cubes they were supposed to be sitting on, they scooted off of them, they crouched on top of them, they fiddled with their necklaces, they gazed up at the boom mike when they were supposed to look like they were listening to the host--and the worst part is that they were being filmed at the time, so I couldn't march over there and hiss, "Straighten up!" at them!

Although it was miserable at the time, one of my friends, whose husband produces the show, later assured me that 1) the kids were fine; 2) when you work with children, your bar for misbehavior is set more along the lines of "Is the kid running around and knocking the set over?" than "Is the kid fiddling with her necklace?"; and 3) kids who are goofy at least make for better TV than kids who are frozen in fear.

That being said, of COURSE it was fine! At about 10:20 in the "Live, Learn, and Play" episode, the girls play living shadows with the Comedy Sportz improv troupe, and yes, it seems as if Sydney's goal in this skit is simply to torture the poor comedian assigned to her, and I think that possibly it actually was her goal, because she's mentioned several times since then how funny it was to NOT do what she was supposed to do, sigh. Will had a fabulous time, though, can you tell? At about 20:00 in the "Let's Eat" episode, you can watch them kick their cubes and play with their necklaces and fidget during the mad pizza-maker sketch.

There are still six more episodes, I think, containing the girls, yet to be aired this season. I'm most looking forward to the fairy tale news sketch, which is a Fox news-esque telling of the Rumplestiltskin tale, in which, if I recall correctly (I was trying to read AND send Sydney psychic instructions to stop falling off of her cube on purpose, remember), Willow plays the gold-spinning maiden.

1 comment:

Jessica said...

That is amazingly cool to be able to watch your kids on TV! Im sur ethey behaved fine too, and the guy was right, its better to be aimated then frozen with fear:)


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