Fraz Wiest (left) and Marc Evans performing in Dungeons & Dragons improv (Janet Shum)
And when you can throw in some references or do something that’s real nerdy, they get extra excited.
—Fraz Wiest, DnD improv performer
You don't have to be a fan of the role-playing game Dungeons and Dragons to enjoy this improv group.
But it wouldn't hurt.
That said, not all the players onstage are as intimately familiar with the game as their legions of devoted followers. Fraz Wiest is part of Winnipeg's DnD Improv crew and he's never even played it. "There are a few people in the cast that have never played. A lot have, which is where the idea came from originally but there are several who have never played it and get by as best they can," he says.
The performers come up with a basic storyline, create characters and build on an episodic structure so each show is new. The format has proven very popular at the Winnipeg Fringe Festival and the audience isn't too shy to call out the cast if they make a mistake - something Wiest says happens pretty much at every show.