You probably don't know me. Maybe you've seen me at the London Music Club, walking around with a camera in my hand at an STFD show. Or maybe I took your ticket at the door. I'm not one of the amazingly talented performers on stage, and my picture isn't featured on the website or any of our social media platforms. But I am a member of Shut the Front Door Improv.
I'm usually behind the scenes, and I do whatever I can to help. I organize events and coordinate our troupes and volunteers. I create spreadsheets for shows, classes, workshops, and events. I'm part of the creative team and do a lot of photography for STFD. I help update our website with current and accurate information. I order merchandise, track orders, and keep inventory. I help run the Street Team, organizing volunteers and recognition events. Throw a few dozen other tasks on top, and my days are busy, but productive. While it can be overwhelming at times, I truly enjoy the work.
I've been given amazing opportunities to spend days with improvisers like Naomi Snieckus, Matt Baram, Patrick McKenna, and Rick and Laura Hall (to name a few!) I told Brandon when I started working with STFD that I wanted to meet Colin Mochrie. And then, there I was, glued to his side for an entire day, taking photos for our second Improv All-Stars show!
As incredible as those experiences were, however proud I am of the charity work we do, and as much as I enjoy working behind the scenes, none of these reasons are why I dedicate my time, skills, and effort to this wonderful organization.
I do this because I believe in Shut the Front Door and the power of improv, and I have seen firsthand how lives have been changed for the better.
STFD has created an involved, loving, and unbelievably supportive community, and I am so proud to be a member. I have never been part of a more accepting, tolerant, and welcoming community of people.
I have been associated with STFD for over four years now, but not until this past year did I fully understand the power that this group possesses. I took on a larger role in 2016 which put me right in the middle of the improv family that I had heard so much about. I helped organize our Street Team at Sunfest and Ribfest, and part of that role meant I would be working at the booth with our volunteers, promoting and supporting STFD.
The experience was transformative. The people I worked with were truly amazing. Whether they had taken STFD's improv classes, or they were supporters who came out every month to see a show - their energy, passion, and attitudes were contagious. More importantly, the kindness, love, and support they showed to one another was admirable. I couldn't tell the difference between friendships that had begun months ago, and those that had just started that morning. We had so much fun, and I felt accepted, welcome, and safe with my new improv family.
As Lily Mae would say, "You meet the best people in improv."
She's right. You really do. I always look forward to spending time with people I've met through STFD, and I know I can count on them for anything.
I want to take an opportunity to thank all the wonderful, talented, special people that I have met through my improv journey. It is because of you that I strive to help grow this scene, create new and exciting opportunities, and build this brilliant community! I am so thankful there is somewhere everyone can go to be welcomed, loved, and supported.
Thank you to Shut the Front Door for bringing more love and acceptance into this wild world.
Written by Megan Lunter - STFD Director of Operations & Official Photographer