Defiant Monkey Improv
Defiant Monkey Improv is an improvisational comedy duo performing in the Western NY region. Founded in 2009 by ComedySportz veterans Karen Eichler and Andrew Spragge, they perform shortform improv for adults, as well as children's shows at local schools, libraries and non-profit organizations.
Karen began performing with ComedySportz in 1997. A graduate of The Second City Toronto, she has performed on stages across the United States, including DC's Improv, the Ivar Theater in Hollywood, Newmark theater in Portland, and Steppenwolf in Chicago.
Andy became involved in theater as an actor in 1984 and began directing in 1986. He was a founding member of the now-defunct Improv Buffet in 2004 and joined ComedySportz in 2005.
Defiant Monkey Improv was formed by Karen and Andy in 2009 as a two-person show.
Defiant Monkey works intimately with the audience to produce a highly interactive shortform show. A variety of scene-based games are played, often involving audience volunteers to varying degrees. Many shows also include a keyboardist, allowing a number of musical scenes to be introduced.
Defiant Monkey performs children and family shows at local libraries to support the Summer Reading Program. They also offer programs for local elementary and middle schools through Young Audiences of Western NY
Defiant Monkey Improv pioneered the Improv Jam in Western NY, providing a regular venue for the public to come and learn how to play improvisation games no matter their level of experience. At the conclusion of every Jam is a 10-15 minute episode of Solomon's River, the area's only all-improvised soap opera, running for over 100 consecutive episodes as of the end of 2013.
Defiant Monkey Improv has provided corporate training for such companies as Kaleida Health, ASTD and YAWNY.