I got into San Diego improv about 40 years ago.

Things were a little different in the 80s.  If you Googled “improv” back then, you would have been doing something strange… The internet didn’t exist, nor Whose Line Is It Anyways.  There was no improv scene here, no regular troupes performing.  I didn’t know what improv was.  But a friend of mine invited me to a weekly practice group in Pacific Beach suggesting it might be fun.

Gerhard was the director, teaching us basic concepts of being grounded, using pantomime, and speaking one sentence at a time.  It was very casual and lots of fun.  I loved being completely absorbed in whatever reality we created.  There was no hurry, no need to be funny, just responding, making decisions, and “living life on stage.” Eventually we became the Comedy Co-Dependents and started doing shows every so often with a suggested $5 donation.  Maybe eight or ten folks would come, somebody would yell out “Blender” — good times would occur.

Sooner or later I joined Theatresports, performing weekly with consistent audiences.  We did more games, increased the entertainment focus, and moved scenes quicker.

It was always exciting, challenging and fun.  A few of us started our own little group, the Sub-Atomic Jenkins clan, did some shows, performing at various locations.

Finally, years later, in 1999, ComedySportz arrived, soon thereafter to become the National Comedy Theatre.  With NCT the performance level and standards jumped way up.  Our director, Matt McDonald, was absolutely hilarious and energetic.  He quickly got us established as a solid night of entertainment in the San Diego community.  I am one of the few original cast members still performing.  We have since gone through multiple iterations of directors and cast mates.  I performed countless shows, taught tons of classes, and am currently leading the Active Minds group in our Unscripted Learning affiliate, teaching improv for seniors.

As great as it’s been, I’m hoping the best is yet to come, and plan on continuing my improv journey for many more years.

-Dave George
NCT Mainstage Cast