In advance of the Out of Bounds Comedy Festival that takes over Austin from August 27 – September 3, YesAndrew.com and the OOB producers are thrilled to present these interviews with OOB troupes and performers. Check back with YesAndrew.com regularly to learn about some of the fantastic out-of-towners who will soon be spreading their improv and sketch genius with our sleepy little town. (And if you like the interview, go buy a ticket to their show immediately!)
Mount Rushmore hail from Minneapolis, which is in Minnesota, which has more than 10,000 lakes. That means that every improviser in Minnesota could have their very own lake (or two!). But on Friday, August 30, Mount Rushmore won’t be at a lake; they’ll be performing their improv format inspired by—-you guessed it—their namesake. Go watch Teddy, Abe, George, and Thomas as you’ve never seen them before: alive!
Why did you decide to submit to Out of Bounds?
Meghan Woolfe is an Austin native and is familiar with the improv scene. She suggested we try for it for a few reasons: we knew this is a unique format and wanted to spread our exposure; and, she missed Texas while the rest of us have never visited the blue island of Austin before!
What do you know about the Austin improv scene?
Meghan knows a lot about your scene. Dan and I know that it is very big, experimental and diverse.
What act/show are you most looking forward to seeing at OOB?
The ones we are able to catch! There are so many!
What workshops, if any, do you plan on taking while at OOB?
I would love to take Todd Stashwick’s Organic Improv, Jill Bernard’s Other Conflicts, and anything from Dave Razowsky. Considering I will be eating soley out of a peanut butter jar to afford the drive from the great north, I have feeling I can only pick one.
How would you describe your show to someone who’s never seen live improv/sketch?
The presidents of Mount Rushmore are alive and well, watching the world go by. We get a topic of conversation as a suggestion and break into scenes when the inspiration hits. Spoiler: George is a goody-goody claiming the British actually still rule, Thomas is a know-it all dandy who has invented ALL the things, Abe is a moody do-gooder who enjoys directing dinosaur movies, and Teddy is an insane narcissist who occasionally rides his giant chicken to fight crime.
How would you describe your show to your grandmother?
The presidents of Mount Rushmore are alive and well,watching the world. We get a topic of conversation as a suggestion and break out into scenes when the inspiration hits. Spoiler: George is a goody-goody claiming the British actually still rule, Thomas is a know-it all dandy who has invented ALL the things, Abe is a moody do-gooder who enjoys directing dinosaur movies, and Teddy is an insane narcissist who occasionally rides his giant chicken to fight crime.
[YesAndrew.com is officially disappointed that Mount Rushmore would describe the show to both their grandmother and a perfect stranger the same way. I suppose some folks have clever, sharp, “with it” grandmas. YesAndrew.com’s grandmother wouldn’t this show on account of “that damn liberal Teddy Roosevelt.”]
If you were to accomplish one big primary goal in your OOB performance, what would it be?
Where the audience will have just as much fun as we will have on stage.
Why do you perform the format you do? Why not some other format?
We are historical revisionists with lovely wigs. The world needs to see our fore-fathers truthfully for once. Speaking for myself, this is honestly the most experimental format I have played in and I love taking creative risks. I have had my fill of Harolds.
If you had to sum up your troupe’s “improv philosophy” in 20 words or less, what would it be?
Play, play, play. Support each other, emotionally commit—even if you feel it is getting too weird.
How do you know if you had a good show?
If we don’t have the urge to run off the stage from a bad scene and instead have a blast by supporting the hell out of each other. And of course we are laugh whores, so we like those too.
When your OOB show is over, what will y’all do?
Eat at a food truck and say “Y’all!”
[I like the image of four adults dressed as our four most famous Presidents walking through downtown Austin just shouting “y’all” over and over again. I hope this happens.]
What’s the funniest line, taken completely out of context, that’s been said during one of your troupe’s shows?
It has been agreed that Teddy’s closing line of one particular show was fantastic. He just kept calling GW “Daddy.” “Oh daddy daddy daddy daddy…” lights fade.
Why should a complete stranger who’s reading this interview come see your show?
If you want to see something different, please give us a try!
Mount Rushmore plays at 10:00 p.m. on Friday, August 30 @ The Institution Theater. (Tickets here.)