Frequently Asked Questions

Here are some questions we are frequently asked.

Q: How did you come up with the name Amish Monkeys?
A: When we were looking for a name for our group, some of the founding members came up with lists of ideas. Many of these ideas consisted of pairs of dissimilar words that sounded interesting together. Other contenders included The Polka Cats and Pandora’s Shoebox. It was the name The Amish Monkeys, though, that won the majority of votes among the founding members. So, though we’re neither Amish nor monkeys, our name has certainly stimulated interest and gained some chuckles. That’s what we wanted, a name that inspires interest and fun!
Q: Why do you rehearse improv?
At first thought, it might seem that improvisers just get up there and say anything that comes to mind. To create a more professional show, though, we feel it is important to practice the skills that will make our scenes and games richer. It’s sort of like how athletes can’t predict how the game will go, but practice certain skills, nonetheless. Our games follow general structures and rules that we can practice.
We also spend our rehearsal time creating original games. And it’s important to get to know each other well, so we can take advantage of each other’s strengths. The more time we spend together, the more we gel as an ensemble.
Q: How do you rehearse improv?
We run our rehearsals much like our shows. Those of us who are not in a particular game are the audience, and provide suggestions.
Q: Aren’t you scared? What if you blank out and can’t think of anything to say?
That’s why working as a team is so important. We support each other and work together in scenes, so hopefully, no one is left stranded or at a loss for words. If someone were to be at a loss for words, presumably another actor would help out. In many ways, improv is actually freeing, because we don’t have to remember any lines in our scenes!
Q: Do you have auditions?
Yes, when the need arises. Keep your eye on our Audition page.
Q: How long have you been around?
The Amish Monkeys formed in the summer of 1999.
Q: Is your show for all ages?
Yes! The majority of our audience is pre-teens and up, though we have had children as young as three at our shows, as well as people in their 80s. Although anything can happen in a show based on spontaneity, we try to keep our humor at the equivalent of a PG-13 rating.

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