Improv Incubator will turn love stories into laughs this Galentine’s Day

Love is a Funny Thing

Penguin’s Comedy Club, 208 2nd Ave SE, Cedar Rapids — Thursday, Feb. 13 at 7:30 p.m.

Zachary Johnson, Anthony Jensen and Matt Jansen (left to right) at Penguin’s Comedy Club during Improv Incubator’s August 2019 show. — courtesy of Anthony Jensen

With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, Galentine’s Day — Thursday, Feb. 13 — is even closer. And with this year being the 10th anniversary of Parks and Recreation’s Galentine’s Day episode, it only makes sense to fill the night with love and humor. Or at least, humor about love.

Improv Incubator’s Thursday night show, “Love is a Funny Thing,” will feature storytellers from the Cedar Rapids area who will share true stories relating to lust, love or loss, which will then inspire the improv teams.

Anthony Jensen and Zachary Johnson started Improv Incubator in 2018 in an effort to offer more opportunities for people to perform and practice improv. The group also offers improv classes through Kirkwood Community College’s Continuing Education program.

“We chose [the name Improv Incubator] because we wanted it to be a safe place to try something different — to try something experimental — and have an audience to find out what’s working,” Jensen said.

“It’s always interesting because I feel people that come for the first time are usually pleasantly surprised.”

February’s show is a little different than the group’s usual performances. Typically, Improv Incubator hosts three shows on the second Thursday of every month, with each being about 45 minutes. Most of the performers are from the Cedar Rapids area, but Improv Incubator has also featured groups from Davenport and Iowa City.

As people are leaving an improv show, Jensen hopes that they “think about the world a little bit differently.” He also brought up the positive impact of a “yes, and” approach, a popular technique used in improv that builds off of a previous idea.

“[Improv] certainly changed how I see the world and function in it,” Jensen said. “The spirit of ‘yes, and,’ of looking at a problem or working with someone whether it’s personally or professionally — there’s always a solution. Having that mindset of ‘yes, and’ can really move that process forward.”

The show is at 7:30 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 13 at Penguin’s Comedy Club, 208 2nd Ave SE. Tickets can be purchased at the door for $5, and there is a two for one admission special for this month’s show.

A list of upcoming shows is on Improv Incubator’s Facebook page.

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