“Whose Live Anyway?” kept crowd laughing at Stephens Auditorium


Daniel Jacobi

Ryan Stiles, Joel Murray, Jeff B. Goode and Greg Proops at Stephens Auditorium.

Stephens Auditorium was filled with cheers and laughter on Friday night as the cast of “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” spent 90 minutes showing off their improv talents.

Comedians Ryan Stiles, Jeff B. Goode, Greg Proops and Joel Murray kept the crowd entertained by adding a midwest twist to the classic games from the original show. Alongside them was Bob Derkach, pianist and composer, setting the tone of each bit with improvisational music.

“We’ll ask for suggestions from the crowd and use the first one we hear,” Proops said. “Or the first one we like, or the first one we have something prepared for.”

Along with claiming a prostitute as the original mascot for the University of Iowa and mistaking Wyoming as bordering Iowa, the group kept it local with jokes about midwest winters and corn consumption.

“It was a great time, lots of laughs,” said Ames resident Jeff Barton. “I remember growing up watching the show.”

Several original comedic songs displayed their musical skills. Lyrics about truck stops, falling in love at Kwik Star and being stuck in a submarine were passionately performed by the entire cast.

Multiple volunteers were brought on stage from the audience, including a woman for whom Murray performed an impromptu love song. For their popular game, sound effects, two attendees came onstage to provide the sounds of Murray and Goode’s bit of getting ready to perform at the 80/35 Music Festival.

Sentences, another popular game they play, kept the crowd laughing as random lines from their scene were pre-written by audience members. Their parody of Jeopardy was another highlight of the show, proven by the constant roaring laughter. In this version, Aaron Rodgers was hosting and the guests were a drug dealer, a sperm donor and Ozzy Osbourne.

Jenny Phillips and her two daughters, Ciara Phillips and Cheyanne Phillips, are fans who traveled from Sioux City, Iowa.

“It was an early birthday present for [Ciara],” Jenny Phillips said. “She’s been watching ever since she could walk, probably.”

While the cast performed in Sioux City the night before, the Phillips family spent the weekend in Ames after accidentally buying tickets for the wrong show.

Guests Madison Engle and Brynjar Johnston also traveled from Marshalltown, Iowa, and Mount Pleasant, Iowa, respectively.

“I’ve seen the show and I saw them when I went to UNI,” Johnston said. “I saw it on Facebook, and I was like, ‘we’ll give it a go.’”

When leaving the auditorium, guests continued laughing and smiling, representing the success of the show.

Their next performance will be on Tuesday in Davenport, Iowa.