Seriously Bent brings back winnings from Chicago National improv tournement

As the month of March came to a solid ending, Suffolk’s very own Seriously Bent was on a flight to Chicago to attend the National College Improv Tournament. In a nine-hour long competition of 47 different colleges and universities at Chicago’s Athenaeum Theatre, Seriously Bent placed fourth overall bringing back a historical honor back to Boston.

“We were very happy when we found out we placed. It was a mixture of happiness and surprise because Seriously Bent has always historically been ranked in the top four,” said team manager Andy Cataluna.  “We were even happy to be there at the nationals to begin with. Suffolk even sent a photographer out to Chicago, we were very honored.”

The first place title was given to the University of Houston’s improv trope, Glaundor, UBC Improv from the University of British Columbia, and third place appointed to Paperback Rhino hailing from the University of Iowa. The teams in attendance each performed for a set of 40 judges tuning in from various parts of the country, all with the first place title gleaming in their eyes throughout. Although there were judges in attendance at the national College Improv Tournament, many of the judges participated in watching the performances via webcast on mtvU’s online website.  All of the judges in attendance participated in order to assure fair and diverse judgment of the students different comedic styles. With mtvU being a sponsor and broadcaster to the tournament, it gave students performing their literal 15 minutes of fame.

“A big part of what we really enjoy in being a part of Seriously Bent is the playfulness. If you are not having fun, the audience isn’t going to have fun with you,” said Cataluna. “You get to know your team members really well and make great friends out of them working so closely together on the stage.”

The team headed to the windy city a few days early in order to find inspiration in the Improv capitol of the country. Taking in as much experience and culture as four days would allow, the team took the extra effort to draw a bit of inspiration from the tournament’s surrounding city.

“We flew out on March 20 and stayed for four days in Chicago. We set nights aside to see certain shows while we in town, Chicago has such a rich Improv scene. We wanted to see as much improv as possible,” said Cataluna. “We saw a cool show at the Improv Olympic and got to meet some of the performers; we also got to see Neofuturists which was really cool.”

Established in the year 2000, Seriously Bent has rapidly become a part of Boston’s local comedy scene. Seriously Bent has developed a close relationship with the North End’s famed Improv Asylum and long-time performers. In preparation for the National College Improv Tournament, Seriously Bent participated in a few workshops with the team’s alumni looking to get a few pointers on their classic style.

“The eye opener for us was the different styles of improv that the teams used. One team did a structure that never would have occurred to us. Houston’s performance was fun to watch and be around.” said Cataluna.

Seriously Bent performances can be found every Thursday in the basement of 73 Tremont residence halls at 10 p.m., open to all members of the Suffolk community.