By Joey Rayburn
TAPER HALL — What seemed like what was going to be a relaxing, jovial evening of college improv so nice you could take it home to meet mom was quickly ruined Thursday night by the introduction of Freshman acting major Tonya Bancroft.
Like much of the audience, Bancroft came out to enjoy the performances of her peers. However, she quickly came upon an Earth-shattering realization once she entered the room: for sixty agonizing minutes, she wouldn’t be the center of attention.
“It’s just not fair that those chuckleheads on stage, who are putting on a free show and didn’t even ask me to come, think they can take the spotlight away from me,” Bancroft explained. Despite the hopes of everyone else in the audience, Bancroft was not going to go peacefully into that good night.
Audience member Regan McAllister witnessed firsthand how Bancroft worked to keep herself in the minds of everyone else in the room. “She laughed at everything,” McAllister said. “Even when they just introduced themselves. She just kept throwing her head back and laughing like she never heard of comedy before.”
Bancroft didn’t go unnoticed by those on stage, either. Samuel Verret, one of the improv troupe members performing that night, was keenly aware of Bancroft’s presence.
“It’s kind of hard to ignore someone when every time you ask for a suggestion, they shout something outlandish,” Verret admitted. “We asked for a person and she just kept shouting, ‘stroke victim!’”
By the end of the night, Bancroft had made her presence known, much to her relief: “It was a close one, that’s for sure!” Even after she left the premises, Verret confessed Bancroft would remain the center of attention, saying, “Oh, we’re going to spend the entire walk back home roasting her. That’s a guarantee.”