Follow the fear: Gwenyth Rosenkrantz’s journey in improv

29 October 2019

Jaycie Calvert

jcalver2@uccs.edu

For junior Gwenyth Rosenkrantz, improv in not only a valuable lifelong skill, but a way to get over fears.

“Improv is literally, in my opinion, the most universal and applicable skill across all areas of life,” Rosenkrantz said.

Rosenkrantz explained how in high school, she had horrible stage fright and fear of public speaking. Growing up in Los Angeles, her high school had a Comedy Sportz program, the longest running show in L.A. Rosenkrantz wanted to be a part of it and thought that telling jokes would be great and that it would help her get over her fear of public speaking.

She faced her fears and joined improv.

“Joining improv definitely helped me get over that fear of public speaking and be a lot more confident in myself,” she said.

When her uncle moved to Colorado Springs, she decided to check out UCCS. When she arrived and saw mountains and snow for the first time, she knew that this was where she wanted to be.

Quickly becoming involved on the Unsupervised Improv team, Rosenkrantz is now the leader of the theater and improv group.

Improv goes much deeper than performing. It is a skill that encourages communication and self-confidence. It is a way to face fears.

“It teaches self-confidence in a huge way, the ability to be on a stage in front of people, and public speaking, being quick on your feet, and really the ability to not second guess yourself and go with your instincts,” Rosenkrantz said.

Improv also enforces the ability to communicate, following the golden “yes, and” rule. The “yes, and” rule means that when on stage with people, you are agreeing with each other and making each other better.

You are adding to people, which is a great skill in everyday conversations; you must be listening to others and finding ways to enhance the overall conversation.

Living life by a motto from two famous improvisors, TJ and Dave, Rosenkrantz lives by “follow the fear.”

“If it’s something that scares me, that tells me that that’s something I need to do,” Rosenkrantz explained.

Rosenkrantz has been following her fears since joining improv in high school, and to her, it is worth it. It is a way for her to continuously push herself and grow.

“I think that getting over fears is so gratifying and makes you a more complete person,” Rosenkrantz said.

Majoring in inclusive elementary education, Rosenkrantz said she loves working with kids and sees herself working in a school while continuing comedy shows after school.

“Kids are the best people on the earth, and they are the funniest people,” she said.

Rosenkrantz will continue as the leader of Unsupervised Improv in Colorado Springs, which performs at many different venues across Colorado, including downtown Colorado Springs at The Carter Payne, various other theater companies, shows in Denver, private shows, charity shows and performances with other improv groups.

An upcoming show for the Unsupervised Improv team will be on Nov. 13 at Loonees Comedy Corner in Colorado Springs. The show will feature Unsupervised Improv in collaboration with other improv teams in a show called “The Hunger Games.”

More information on the Unsupervised Improve team can be found on Instagram and Facebook at unsupervisedimprov.

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