SpeakEasy – Nouns are People Too: a gamble with few rewards


Victoria: When Missie Peters randomly pulled the Queen of Clubs out of a box, she declared, “sometimes ya gotta take a gamble.”  This is exactly what Dave Morris and Peters did when they chose to put on a night of improvised spoken word.

While I am a fan of spoken word and of improvisation, the two just didn’t pull together in the 50-minute performance, SpeakEasy - Nouns are People Too. Good try, but drawing nouns out of a box didn’t seem to inspire the poetry out of you. Understandably, it would be hard to make something random sound poetic right away, but that is just what Morris and Peters claimed to be able to do, and that is why it was a disappointing show.  Sure, Morris had some funny lines, which a master of improvisation should be able to throw out there, and Peters had about two moments where her words were charming and even raised a couple of goose-bumps. But two moments? Out of an hour-long show? I expected more.

About 45 minutes into the show, when I really started to zone out, they pull out a guitar—which was a good choice, because I would say that this is the best part of the night:  the rehearsed part. Morris strums My Girl, by the Temptations, while Peters says an endearing piece of spoken word about water fights and saying “I love you.” This is why a rehearsed show would have been better: they wouldn’t have had to have “taken a gamble.”  Good try on the “mash-up of spoken word, music and improvisation,” but they should have just stuck to what each knows best and leave it at that.  At least they looked as though they were having a bit of fun out there.

Contrastingly, the venue—Paul’s Motor Inn—was perfect for a night to enjoy the Fringe: cozy stage, dim lights and good beer made it a fine night out. Of course, with this being improv, maybe on another night you’ll get luckier than me.

For showtime information go here.

By Alina Cerminara