One-woman improv show comes to QED
by Sara Krevoy
Feb 06, 2020 | 13553 views | 0 0 comments | 1584 1584 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Dynamic, spontaneous and whimsical - these are the characteristics of Michelle Drozdick’s solo improv show “The Gimmick and You.”

Recently completing a two-year run, the full-length, entirely unscripted comedy show played monthly at Manhattan venues the People’s Improv Theater (PIT) and The Tank. Now, a revival of “The Gimmick and You” is coming to QED in Astoria for performances on February 16 at 7 p.m. and March 3 at 7:30 p.m.

Each performance of “The Gimmick and You” is unique. The show’s concept sees Drozdick interview a special guest on stage for roughly 10 minutes about their life, as well as their connection to the comedy world. She then draws on some of the details from their story to improvise her own comedic storyline.

Guests for the upcoming QED performances are comedians Dominic Russo and Rory Scholl respectively.

“At the best ones,” Drozdick describes of the feeling she gets on stage, “I go into a trance where it’s just me and the audience.

“I often think of improv as adults playing make believe,” she adds. “Getting on stage and coming up with a story on the spot isn't that much different than being a kid at the playground playing pretend.”

Drozdick, who not long ago finished a run of her critically recommended show “Message in a Bottle,” has been working in the comedy world for nearly four years now.

While Drozdick was having fun making people laugh and telling stories as a kid in Bayside, her grandmother was always encouraging her to pursue comedy. But Drozdick, thinking that was an impossible feat, shrugged the suggestion off.

“I imagine these days she's looking down saying ‘I told you so’,” laughs Drozdick recalling her grandmother’s words.

An English major in college, Drozdick considers herself a writer, which she says reflects her true passion. She was on a date at an improv show when her interest in the genre was piqued.

Drozdick soon sought out a solo coach, and realized that a moving forward with a career in the industry was indeed possible.

“When it comes to solo improv,” she says, “it’s just a case of trusting yourself. It’s an incredibly scary thing to do but it's also the greatest feeling in the world when it goes well. You’ll have bad shows, amazing shows and everything in between, but if you don't’ go for it, it's just a missed opportunity.”

“The Gimmick and You” star is excited to be performing at QED, a more intimate space than the others that have housed her show. She is looking forward to experimenting with the fluidity of the venue to create more interaction with the audience.

Drozdick’s goals include fostering a greater solo improv scene within the New York City comedic community, as well as working on shows with a scripted format herself. These days, she can be found performing at The Tank in Midtown, or participating in The Armory’s sketch team (their first show is February 19).

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