It’s almost time for the 2013 WitOut Awards for Philadelphia Comedy! As we get closer to the show, we’ll be rolling out a series of posts to help you get more acquainted with this year’s nominees. Read all about ’em, and then be sure to get your tickets for the big event on January 13th at World Cafe Live!
The nominees for Best Female Improviser are:
Jess Ross (Asteroid!, Hot Dog)
Kristen Schier (The Kristen & Amie/Amie & Kristen Show, Director of ZaoGao)
Emily Davis (Hot Dish, Soiree)
Maggy Keegan (Soiree, Whisper, Director of Davenger)
Amie Roe (The Kristen & Amie/Amie & Kristen Show)
Kristen Schier on Jess Ross:
“Jess Ross is a force. Her wild-eyed hilarity is as strange and intense as her beauty. Her unfettered goofiness paired with the deeper commitment of a talented actor is an unstoppable and delightful combination.
Allow me to brag: I have had the good fortune to work with Jess on a few improv projects over the years. I used to watch her shine in the N Crowd. We called her Moonbeam ’cause she was one. I also coached Jessica Tandy on occasion (and by coach I mean sit on Andy’s couch and laugh) and I most recently worked with her in Myths and Monsters. You can trust her to bring the funny. What I am saying is, I know this improviser very well and she is good. Damn good.
It is no accident that other projects Jess Ross is involved in, like The Flat Earth, the aforementioned Myths and Monsters and Asteroid! are nominated too. Jess Ross is a fantastic ensemble member and she raises the caliber of the performers she works with—also, she is funny. Damn funny.
She said once that her comedic inspirations were the Muppets. Well, cheers to the closest human embodiment of Muppetry I have ever seen.”
Maggy Keegan on Kristen Schier:
“I’ve been a huge fan of Kristen Schier since before I moved back to Philadelphia. Kristen’s connection to her character’s emotional truth, her sense of play, her use of the stage, and how she uses her whole body and soul to create is inspiring to watch. I mean, have you seen the Kristen and Amie Show? I could watch that every week. And her clowning? There has rarely been a time in my thirties where I have giggled like a schoolgirl in an audience out of pure delight and watching her as a clown is a joyful experience.
Not only is she a great improviser, she is also huge creative force in Philadelphia. She has taught and nurtured hundreds of Philadelphia improvisers through classes, directing, and through her innovative group ZaoGao. She has taken this scene to a whole new level.
I think we can also all feel Kristen’s positive spirit whenever she enters the room. We are very lucky that she calls Philadelphia home because as she continues to create we are all the better for it.”
Jess Ross on Emily Davis:
“Emily is always able to be surprising and exciting when she performs because she is amazing when it comes to really listening to her scene partner and responding from an honest place. She can pick up on things most people would fly past and sees what other people don’t in offers that are given to her. She’s already naturally such a witty and clever person, but the way she plays is what I think makes her so special and a stand out. She’s the perfect combination of being really well educated on improv (she knows the structure of scenes, the piece as a whole, how to set things up, make people look good) and she is also able to be completely in the moment and organic. She’s not forcing anything, she’s using everything that’s out there, putting the pieces of the puzzle together, and making it look really easy and fun while she does it. And that is why I love Emily!”
Emily Davis on Amie Roe:
“The first time I met Amie was in a diner. She came to meet some improvisers that I was with, and she scared the crap out of me with how funny she was. I can’t remember why, but she was making lists of five things in various categories on her fingers, and I was completely intimidated. Each thing that she said was funnier than the last. I was pretty psyched when, later, she accepted my friend request.
Amie is a rare bird. She’s an amazing improviser with a high reference level and an equal love of the low brow. She’s really smart and naturally funny, and she puts herself completely out there on stage. She’s a robot, a ninja, and a pirate. She’s got great hair, an awesome wardrobe (I love her sweaters), and she’s gorgeous. She’s a freak.
So, here are a few lists of five to honor Amie’s awesomeness and accomplishments:
Amie is an incredible performer, director, coach, teacher, and producer. Over the last few years, Amie has put together ambitious projects, made a lot of t-shirts, saved kids’ lives, been a good friend, and acquired a nemesis. Amie has made improv better through her performances in The Amie and Kristen/Kristen and Amie Show and Brick, as one of the masterminds behind Duofest, through her level of commitment to everything she does, through the generosity and support that she offers to others, and by keeping everything fun, charming, and weird. Thanks for everything, and love you, Amie!”
Amie Roe on Maggy Keegan:
“What can you say about Maggy Keegan that isn’t obvious from her radiant smile? A lot. Because in addition to having a beautiful smile, Maggy is also a really talented comedienne, and you cannot tell if a person is a great comedian from their smile.