In times of stress, sadness, political angst, and frustration, you need to find ways to laugh.  Laughter is the best medicine for many things. 

As a veteran of live theater and being on stage, I know the joy that can come from making people laugh.  If you need some laughter in your life, might I suggest a road trip to Columbia Missouri, and the Talking Horse Theater on St James Place.

I am very familiar with this venue, as I have been a performer and audience member of this Black Box theater.   Only seats about 75 people, but the quality of work that is generated from this venue is always stellar.  As for the laughter part, I need to share with you about their house improv teams.

I am an improv actor and host in my spare time.  And while I was in Columbia, I founded the Off The Cuff Improv Troupe.  We did a few successful shows for Talking Horse before I moved away, and I turned the group over to the current Artistic Director of Talking Horse, Adam Brietzke.  He rebranded the group The Ponies and their specialty is short form improv.  Similar to the TV show Whose Line Is It Anyway.  They take audience suggestions and create scenes, games, and laughter from what the audience gives them. People think this is easy.  Trust me, it is not..

I saw their show Friday night, as they do a show the first Friday of every month.  Lots of talent on that stage, and the tickets are only $10.  First hour is a bit more family friendly, 2nd hour (the "after dark" hour) is potentially a bit more "R" rated.  It is worth your time.

The theater also has a "long form" improv group called The Stable Boys.  This group is more scene orientated.  Think Second City stuff.  Longer scenes, with more of a story and created characters, but equally as funny.  This group does themed shows, about 1 a month, and yes, it can get a little dirty.  But the performers are all skilled, and you never know what you will expect.

Click HERE for information on The Ponies, and for The Stable Boys you can click HERE for information on their upcoming shows, including their Christmas show Dec 7th.  Both groups generate funds for the theater.  And you are welcomed to get a cocktail from Dogmaster Distillery next door and bring it into the theater during the show.

Laughter is the best medicine and to see scenes that make you laugh made up on the spot by talented performers is even better.  Trust me, it is worth the drive.  You can also contact Talking Horse HERE for more info on both groups.

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