The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

The Independent Student Newspaper of St. John's University

The Torch

Comedy’s Secret Weapon

Swords clash at the renowned People’s Improv Theater (PIT) in New York City every Friday night from Feb. 19 to March 12 as the double-edged comedy duo perform a hilarious gut-wrenching improv narrative show.

The comedy team consisting of Bradford Jordan and Lucas Kavner have only been working together for less than a year, but are quickly excelling into one of the top tier acts of improvisational comedy.

At the beginning of the show, the two men ask the crowd to name a place. One person shouts, “Bowling!” and the comedic duo automatically break into an outlandish simulation of two bowlers fighting over a bowling lane, with the lane and one of the bowler’s wife at stake. The absurdity of the situation is humorous, but captures the essence of the comedy they are great at creating.

The best part of their show comes from the multiple characters (they each can play at least 10 different characters in the same skit) that the two comedians act out combined with their natural transitions from one to the next, maintaining a flowing narrative that is easy for the crowd to follow.

Then there’s the “ImproView,” where Jordan and Kavner pick a random audience member and conduct an interview. The two then perform a hilarious show based off the person’s responses. Regardless of the content, the show’s consistency makes it a knockout crowd pleaser.

When Inferno asked where inspiration for their shows comes from, Kavner said, “I never have a funny idea that I wake up to, like a man falling crouch first on a fence and try to force it into an act.
It would just come out bad.”

However, Jordan and Kavner had a good start by taking classes at the PIT and the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater (the UCB) in Manhattan. After completing classes, they started to gain momentum by joining improv teams like the Baldwins and Party Lights, where they were first introduced to the public.

Through their connections from the PIT, the comedic duo started out by doing side bits of work outside the theater. Jordan has been working with the Striking Viking Story Pirates at the New York City School System for creativity while Kavner participates in plays throughout New York, writes for the hilarious McSweeny’s journal and doing commercial gigs. But when the theater company directors at the PIT decided to put the two together, the sharp and frenetic improv group called Swords was born.

Swords, nominated by Improvisation News for Best in Sketch Comedy, Most Innovative Comedy Show or Group, have won the most recent Sketchprov at the PIT. When asked how their spontaneous improv makes them successful, Jordan used a simple analogy: “It’s like taking a girl on a date and you don’t really have to try and everything just clicks together.

And then there are those dates where you force everything and then have a lot of awkward silences,” Jordan admitted.
Their shows and personalities are true testaments to their talent. For a lovely evening with the Swords, see them perform at the PIT, located at 154 W. 29th St.

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