Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood are famous for pulling hilarity out of thin air.
The veterans of improvised comedy, stars of the Emmy-nominated 'Whose Line is it Anyway?' begin their first Australian tour next month and Colin promises that it won't be like any tour they've had before.
He describes it like this, “... an evening of interactive comedy with big belly laughs supplied by improv icon Colin Mochrie (that's me) and eye candy for the visually impaired by Brad Sherwood. The most fun you can have with a theatre full of people that's legal and doesn't include washing up.”
Talking more about the tour, he adds. “We've never been to Australia so we're really excited but we're trying not to learn anything about the place so that it's a surprise,” he laughs.
Their hilarious live improv. show, driven entirely by audience contributions, works just like a live version of 'Whose Line Is It Anyway' and involves audience members giving suggestions and being called onto the stage to add an extra element of the unexpected.
Brad has been quoted as saying it is “the world's funniest improv show, featuring the brilliant comic stylings of Brad Sherwood and his addle-brained sidekick, Colin Mochrie. It is the longest running international improv show on planet earth, we think.”
Colin isn't sure about that claim to fame but he is clear about the appeal of improv. “The great thing about improv. is that unlike stand-up, if you go down you take everyone with you. So if I completely die, you all die.”
Colin's career in improv. started back in 1980 when he saw a theatre sport group performing in his native Canada.
“Being as lazy as I am, I saw them and thought 'wow' that's great ... Something that you don't have to practise or prepare for!” — the philosophy that the duo has embraced throughout eleven years of touring together.
“We don't do anything to prepare for any of our shows! About five minutes before we start, I hear the crowd and get really nervous because I know we are going out there with nothing, but as soon as I'm out there I know I am with people I can trust and that we'll get through it.”
Mochrie's first appearance on 'Whose Line is it Anyway?' the British version, was in 1991. And even though the show was a success, his role on the show got off to a rocky start when ABC wanted to drop Mochrie because they thought the comedian looked too old and not hip enough.
However, those involved in the show held their ground, and ABC was smart enough to see that talent and creativity were more important than being or looking 'hip' and the fans agreed, making Mochrie a popular mainstay on the American 'Whose Line' stage and then took to the road to tour.
“Brad and I have been talking about putting out a coffee table book on all the things that have happened to us on tour. Rather than people rushing us, we'll have them come up and ask for a photo — then hand us the camera.”
Colin Mochrie & Brad Sherwood perform at the Tivoli on October 22, 8pm.