Dear LMA Community,
Boom! Check that out, I didn’t say “Dear School”, or “Dear Students” or “Dear Some weirdo who reads this blog despite never even having heard of LMA, or improv, but who is obsessed with capsicum infused olive oil, and for some reason thinks this blog will one day reference capsicum infused olive oil, and wants to be here to yell ‘SEE, THEY REFERENCED CAPISCUM INFUSED OLIVE OIL, I KNEW THEY WOULD’, even though we definitely, will never, EVER, mention capsicum infused olive oil EVER!”
No I said “community.” And that’s what I want to talk about today. You see, we’re not a bunch of individuals who sometimes improvise and the like together, and we’re not a school, even though we have a school, we’re a community. And I want to tell you something about me. I’m a community ENTHUSIAST.
Oh also, here is something else about me; I am writing today to tell you that I am the new Artistic Director of LMA. My name is David Tieck. (Feel free to read my bio elsewhere on this site, it’s rather impressive. Shucks.).
I am not going to write too much, even though this is my fourth attempt to write this blog, and I had to abandon efforts 1-3 for each being about six thousand words too long.
So, I’m pumped. Quick thanks to my predecessor Dan P for getting this community pumping so hard that I can jump into this role not freaking out about how to get it to pump. Thanks to Eran T for giving me a shot. Dan T, for taking on the role of Head of school, which is also known as the role doing all the admin stuff that helps you all make art, it too often goes un-noticed, or is not given enough credit. Thanks to Carolyn M, for taking the role of School coordinator, which is a role doing just as much of all that admin stuff; I will never stop being thankful for you both.
If any of you folk at home meet them out in the traps, buy them a beer, they so deserve it. Thanks to many others who have worked hard to build this community, Dave E, all the current teachers, all the past teachers, all the current students, all the past students, and thank you to Mike L who said “its over there” when I was lost and late to my first ever LMA meeting a few years ago. And last of all thankyou to the Fonz, for popularizing shortening surnames to their first letter, so I didn’t have to look up the spelling of a bunch of people’s names. I mean ‘Evans’? Who the fuck could spell that?
Here’s what the point is – community. We’re a great one. This community is made up of current and future improvisers, sketch makers, podcasters, TV stars, filmmakers, theater makers, web-series makers, writers, performers, directors, hosts, musicians, extras, CGI dragons, camera people, sound engineers, doctors who throw away the ‘script’ and whip that heart out with a table spoon, comedians, dramatists, and at least one future commonwealth games squash gold medalist. That’s ace.
Here’s what I know – Together we all make each other better. We all inspire one another, encourage each other, and explore together. We will all make art together, and make each other look better by being associated with each other. That’s ace.
Here’s what I believe: The Australian comedy scene is about to explode. ABC2 is about to, or just has, rebranded as comedy. Netflix, Stan, Amazon and more are about to invest lots of money into local artists. Podcasting is still relatively in its infancy here. It all reminds me a lot of what I’ve read and heard about where the American scene was as UCB, and before them The Second City, began to blow up. If you want a career in the arts, and especially comedy, you could not possibly be in a better place in the world. That’s ace.
Here’s what makes me most jazzed: This is a community that LOVES risk takers. From those about to sign up for their first ever improv class, to those in later levels trying to challenge themselves to get better, to those who’ve done this a while and are trying to change the dynamics of what improv and comedy is capable of. This is a community that thinks of ‘mistakes’ and ‘failures’ as GIFTS. That’s ace.
The point is it’s all ace people. I’m excited. You’re excited. And if you’re not come see me, and we’ll stage an excitement intervention invocation. Actually, I started writing that as a joke, but that’s genuinely a badass idea. Let’s do it. Who’s got a good home for a party that includes extreme shamanic chanting?
So I have written too god damn much again. And have only scratched the surface of what I want to write about. So keep your eye on this page, and I’ll write more later. But once again, it’s nice to introduce myself to those of you who don’t know me yet. Times are good! Let’s celebrate.
Ps. If you’re throwing a party to celebrate don’t make it a “capsicum infused olive oil” theme, unless you want some real weirdoes to show up.
Note from LMA Founder, Eran Thomson
I’m thrilled to have David stepping into this role. It’s such an exciting time in LMA’s history, and we have a massive year in front of us to all be very excited about. More improv classes, more sketch classes, more clown and stand-up too, more shows, more special workshops, new children’s classes, new teachers, new venues, new website – in fact there’s so much new, we’re gonna need a new word for new. So yeah, exciting times. And that bearded, hairy and hilarious maniac up there is gonna be busy. So please make him feel welcome – and if your new here, welcome to the LMA community – it really is something special.