So here’s my prompt: There are only so many creative ways to discuss the high-speed and entertaining ferocity of Broadway’s Freestyle Love Supreme. So in a valiant attempt to utilize the power of words (a pivotal theme of FLS, might I add) please enjoy this acrostic(ish) poem.
Fast. Furious. Fun. Free-for-all of ideas and story possibilities.
Really, truly improvised. The entire show is created on the spot and involves audience participation. Some of the word requests that came in were far-fetched to say the least, but the FLS crew was able to spew out mind-blogging rhymes and stories, keeping the audience entertained for the entire show.
Everyone can participate. Yes, even you in the rear mezzanine. Upon walking into the theatre, there is a request box for words that will be used throughout the show.
Electrifying comedy from Andrew Bancroft, who also goes by Jelly Donut. In addition to his impressive ability to rhyme, his use of physical comedy stood out from the rest of the cast.
Some nights you’ll get Lin, others you won’t. On any given night star-studded FLS cast members could perform. Some of them being Hamilton alum Chris Jackson, Daveed Diggs, and James Monroe Iglehart just to name a few.
Time will pass before you know it. The show is only about 80 minutes long, but it packs quite the punch of funny, sentimental, and all around feel-good theatre.
You will be asked to put away your cell phone, as this production prides itself on being distraction free. (Once you get past not taking your traditional Playbill selfie, it’s actually quite refreshing)
Love. A key theme of this show and they make it known throughout the night. Co-creator Anthony Veneziale (he co-created this collective with Lin-Manuel Miranda and director, Thomas Kail) shared that a mission statement of this group in its inception 15 years ago was/is to share all forms of love by way of storytelling.
Elaborate in creativity, simple in just about everything else. The set is pretty simple, the most visually stunning part being the lighting (designed by Jeff Croiter) but this show isn’t about that. It’s about the power of words and how can all connect to each other by communication.
Lewis, Arthur. Otherwise known to the crew as Arthur The Geniuses. Impressive on the keys and has quite the voice as well.
Off-Broadway. FLS comes to Broadway fresh off of a very successful run downtown at the Greenwich House Theatre earlier this year. Even on a larger stage, the show maintains its intimate feel.
Veneziale, Anthony. Your emcee for the evening. He leads the crew with a funny, empathetic, and engaging approach. The entire theatre can feel his charismatic energy.
Every want a second chance? FLS challenges the audience to think about a time in life where they wish a situation went differently and share it with the class (literally, they give the selected person a microphone and ask them to tell the story of what happened) — Following that, the FLS crew then offers a lucky audience member a second chance at that situation by creating an improvised alternative reality for them. These situations are wacky and wild, but this approach of people sharing stories also enhances the human connection, which at its core, is what this show is truly about.
Shockwave. Chris Sullivan will shock you with his unbelievable natural ability to beatbox. It’s more than just a traditional beatbox. The way he’s able to create beats and sounds by using his body is unmatched.
Utkarsh Ambudkar. This guy can spit rhymes. Not to mention his comedic timing was among the best I’ve seen on a stage in a long time. He wasn’t afraid to get personal. The prompt during the “every word you’ve heard here is true” segment was “humble people” and he shared a story about his parents who immigrated from India to create opportunity for him, really tying it back to one of the main themes of the show, being “love”.
Pet Peeves. Have something that’s really bugging you? Something you want to get off your chest? Well consider this for your weekly therapy. A segment of the show is a rap battle devoted to comedically venting about issues taken from the audience.
Rap and hip-hop roots. But you already knew that considering this show shares a creative team with the masterminds behind In The Heights and Hamilton. Due to its contemporary base, it’s perfect for fans of hip-hop, comedy, or even spoken word. There’s something for all ages to identify with here.
Extended on Broadway through January 12, 2020.
Masters of improv. Every talent on this stage has an incredible ability to think on their feet and ideate instantaneously. They take a Second City approach by utilizing audience input, but turns it completely on its head as every single sound, from musical note to word is improvised. A bit more complicated and interesting than your traditional “Yes, and” format.
Everyone should run (don’t walk!) to the Booth Theatre (222 West 45th Street) to see this heartfelt and entertaining show! Visit https://freestylelovesupreme.com/ for more information and to buy tickets.