Ripley
Awaken bravery. Embrace weird. Cultivate play.
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about RIPLEY

 ABOUT RIPLEY

An all-female improv collective that creates stories about real women who save the day, save the world, and save each other.

Our mission: To awaken bravery, embrace weird, and cultivate play.

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Why Ellen Ripley?

Oh gurl, so many reasons. As one of the “first female action heroes”, Ripley changed the landscape for females in fiction (especially in action and horror). And let’s talk about Sigourney: the part was originally written for a man, and Sigourney Weaver defied the odds. (Here’s a little cheers to Ridley Scott as well.)

Ellen Ripley is brave AND fearful. She’s powerful AND vulnerable. She’s strategic AND compassionate. She is a real, multi-dimensional woman, and so are we. Ellen Ripley could be any one of us. Ellen Ripley IS every one of us.

The very first Ripley rehearsal. Took place AFTER our first performance.

The very first Ripley rehearsal. Took place AFTER our first performance.

Who are we:

Ripley is a group of trained actresses who work through collaborative improvisation to create character driven stories about women who are ernest, dark, weird, and silly. We delight as storytellers in both the light and darkness.

What we do:

We improvise stories of real women who save the day, save the world, and save each other. In television and film, we can fully-improvise a story as the cameras are rolling and we also use improvisation to devise scripts, outlines, treatments that we then produce, direct, and perform in. On stage, we improvise full-length narratives based on audience suggestion.

What do we mean by improv?

When Ripleys say “improv” we mean we are making it up on-the-spot, with no script, no outline, no predetermined plot points of any kind. Only one of our shows, “GLAM”, has set characters, but beyond that, nothing is predetermined.

Why improv?

Improv is a collaborative art form that requires playfulness, bravery, vulnerability, and an incredibly connected ensemble. Improvisation fosters an exciting magic that is equally engaging in success as it is in failure. We’re excited to tell stories from that joyful, weird, and dark place of our brains where improv resides.

Photo from our very first Ripley performance. We called ourselves “Wicked Ripley” back then. Photo by Alison Inconstanti.

Photo from our very first Ripley performance. We called ourselves “Wicked Ripley” back then. Photo by Alison Inconstanti.

Current projects:

RIPLEY SERIES: “As We Go Along” - A completely unscripted television series. The crew (costumes, set, props, glam, camera dept, and director) gets the audience suggestions in advance to prepare the set. On the day, the actors go through hair and makeup, and then are given the suggestion by the director, and camera’s roll!
Pitch package completed and submitted to festivals as of September 2019.

ENCOUNTER (stage show) - The stories of first contact between one woman and the completely unknown. Inspired by Ripley's namesake film Alien, along with Arrival, and the book Annihilation, ENCOUNTER blends sci-fi, horror, and "the new weird," unpacking the emotional and psychological impact of a meeting with benevolent extraterrestrials, malevolent predators, and entirely unexplained forces.

DYSTOPIA (stage show) - The Capital rules us all… one young heroine battles injustice… love triangles abound. Based on Young Adult Dystopian novels like “The Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collins and “Divergent” by Veronica Roth.

GLAM (stage show) - The year is 1986… seven women star in a live arm-wrestling television show… their arms wrestle for the cameras AND their personalities wrestle behind the scenes. Based on Netflix’s hit series “GLOW” and the original 80s wrestling show of the same name.

SHAKESTOPIA (stage show) - Combines our DYSTOPIA genre with the works of Shakespeare. One young Shakespearean heroine battles injustice… epic love triangles and Shakespearean verse abound. (In conjunction with one of our favorite groups Shrew!)

Projects in development:

TWITCH STREAMING - Ripley’s on their own Twitch channel?! Oh yes, it’s in the works. We’ve got our format. We’ve got our studio. And soon we’ll have your subscription! Stay tuned.

DEVISED SCRIPTS - Can’t say much about them now, but we’ve used improvisation to devise scripted content!

And it’s worth mentioning…

Through our extensive training with the critically acclaimed Impro Theatre as well as our own research and development processes, the women of Ripley have various expertise and are well-versed in a number genres from our very own YA DYSTOPIA to the works of writers like Jane Austen, William Shakespeare, Dorothy Parker, Charles Dickens, Tennessee Williams, and genres like Silent Movie, Horror, Film Noir, Buddy Cop, X-Files (directed by Ripley Jessica Lynn Verdi), Star Trek (directed by Ripleys Aliza Pearl and Sara Mountjoy-Pepka), The Twilight Zone, and more!