Celebrities spar for theatresports crown

Rebecca De Unamuno with Daniel Cordeaux

Australia’s favourite celebs will face off in an epic battle of wits in the 2012 Celebrity Theatresports challenge, relying upon nothing but fearless spontaneity.

The handpicked cast of hilarious celebrity players includes Andrew O’Keefe, Adam Spencer, Rob Carlton and Claire Hooper, paired with some of Sydney’s top improvisers.

Theatresports World Champion Rebecca De Unamuno joins them at the Enmore Theatre on July 21, but this time as director and host.

Whilst Rebecca is thrilled with her role as director, she confesses to experiencing “scene envy” when watching other performers from the sidelines.

“You can see that people are having the best fun and it goes somewhere amazing and you just think, ‘I wish I was in that scene!’ I’m sure there’ll be plenty of those moments on the night.”

And few people would be as familiar with the thrill of impromptu performance as this theatresports veteran.

“It’s an amazing feeling when you have nothing else to depend on but your teammates and your ideas. That’s it. There’s nothing else there that can save you.”

Rebecca craves those moments when improvised scenarios teeter on the edge of unpredictability.

“It’s the constant thrill of the unknown, and the uncertainty of it that I find quite thrilling,” she says.

In last year’s Celebrity Theatresports, Rebecca transformed into a “raunchy” rooster in a musical sing-off with Julia Zemiro, and joined the Umbilical Brothers as the Statue of Liberty.

But despite the chaotic spontaneity on stage, extensive preparation is involved in the organisation of the show. The format has been reshuffled to include traditional musical, physical and narrative challenges in the first half, while the second half “gives teams a bit more freedom to play more open scenes”.

And what will the celebrity performers bring to the table this year?

“Adam Spencer has a brilliant mind and impulse. He’s very good with language and quick ideas. His rhyming skills are second to none,” Rebecca explains.

Silver Logie winning actor Rob Carleton loves tackling bold, quirky characters, and Gabby Millgate is a fantastic musical improviser.

“I’ve got many faces that people would know, but I’ve also cast a few younger players – younger in age, but also in experience – because I think it is really important to help them get more experience on the Enmore stage.”

Audiences are generally on the player’s side, Rebecca says, even if a scene fails spectacularly.

“Audiences are really generous because they feel part of the show, because they’re watching something happen for the first time,” she says.

“They just love the fact that people are up there and giving it a go. It’s a contract between audience and players.”

Celebrity Theatresports will help raise money for CanTeen, the Australian organisation for young people living with cancer.


8pm, July 21 at Enmore Theatre,

Tickets: $45-55, Conc. $38-48.

Bookings: www.improaustralia.com.au     


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