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Bad Altitude Improv Show

By Bill O'Hara

the laugh we needed

Everyone carried a familiar smile, and, after two years of wearing masks, it was refreshing to remember how warm a smile looked on a stranger’s face. The event was held at The Lodge, a cozy room located next to Banff Brewing Pub, and the show, coordinated and hosted by the hilarious actor Timothy Eckmier, brought to this town the culture that it lacked, and the laugh that we needed.

tring lights, bright graffiti, and good food; The ambiance was reminiscent of lost memories once lived at a college bar. 


Around 9 P.M., lines began to crowd the second floor of the Clock Tower Mall. There were whispers about how good the previous show was and how excited some were for this one. The doors opened around 9:40. A half empty cookie jar with some bills was strategically positioned at the entrance to collect optional donations. Food and drinks were provided by a beaming staff. For our table, we ordered the Warm Buttered Soft Pretzels, Tacos, and three blonde ales. 

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When the improv team was called to the stage, we did not expect 11 actors to show up, however, the large number

only reflected the beautiful diversity of the group. Tim, not wasting a second, jumped into action and asked the audience to shout random lines at him to use as prompts. The show began with a game of ‘things to say to a ______  you shouldn’t say to your partner.” An enthusiastic audience shouted suggestions, and the improv team had to quickly come up with answers. What are things to say to a lightbulb you shouldn’t say to your partner? Irene and Laura answered,  “you’re not too bright,” and “I think the spark is gone.” What are things to say to a measuring tape you shouldn’t say to your partner? Nolan responded, “my dad works better.” What are things to say to a can opener you shouldn’t say to your partner? Nolan confidently repeated, “my dad works better.”

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The show went on brilliantly with skits such as good, bad, and ugly advice to give someone whose boyfriend left her for her mother, the very eligible bachelor reality show, and performing musicals with your boss at nesters market. Our personal favorite was a trio performance narrating the history of ballsack town and the viagra problem in it.

The laughter echoed through Banff Ave, and two hours of improv did not exhaust the wit of the actors. It is a blessing to have such a group in the valley, as this town is in serious need of an art scene outside the pretentious walls of the Banff Center. The individuals at Bad Altitude Improv are a true treasure, so next time you attend a show, please make sure to be generous in your donations.