The Beach Reporter
December 1, 2015

Reindeer confessional in Hermosa: April's Fools Comedy Troupe brings 'Confessions of the Eight' for three nights to the 2nd Story Theater in Hermosa Beach

Michael Hixon

The reindeer at the North Pole are holding nothing back in the tell-all, "Confessions of the Eight," a comedic spin on Jeff Goode's "The Eight Reindeer Monologues." April's Fools Comedy Troupe brings back the show for three nights beginning Thursday, Dec. 10.

"Confessions of the Eight" combines the group's improv experience with the scripted format that April's Fools first brought to the stage last year after nearly 20 years of entertaining the South Bay. But this is the first time they are performing a show for three nights, Dec. 10, 11 and 12.

"December can always be a difficult month to get people out," said director Sean Hannaway, who is also performing in the show. "Last year I said, 'Let's do something different.' People were really open to it ... when the one show was done last year, everybody was so upset because they said we want to do more of this. We just don't want only one night."

In "Confessions of the Eight," Vixen has done a tell-all interview that is related to the dark underside of the North Pole. The show is for audiences 13 and older due to its adult content.

"Everything you thought you knew about what's going on at the North Pole is wrong," said Hannaway, who lives in Manhattan Beach.

April's Fools is comprised of 20 members who all live in the South Bay. Many of the original members first met in improv classes taught by Gloria Policare of the South Bay Adult School.

"She had this love for improv that caught more and more people ... it became this kind of movement, 'okay, let's get together," Hannaway said.

April's Fools performs both short and long-form improv, which is tailored to the audience, whether children or adults. They get many repeat audience members because the actors feed off the audience and the routines are generated from their participation.

"That is the most fun part of it, get a suggestion from them and see it pay off as you go through the scene," Hannaway said. "You start off with this suggestion and you don't know where it's going to go to and then you end a scene and you created something that didn't exist right before you started. You created this small world, which you can play in, which the audience can see ... it's magical when you do that"

April's Fools had its start in Palos Verdes, performing every three or four months, before they moved to the 2nd Story Theater in Hermosa Beach seven years ago. They now perform the second Saturday of every month.

April's Fools, who works with the Hermosa Arts Foundation to keep the comedy troupe in Hermosa Beach, performed numerous shows at the PV Players before the Players went defunct. They have also performed at The Improv, The Comedy Store, Second City, Westside Eclectic, McCadden Place Theater and Piera Dusa 3rd Street Promenade Theater. Members of the troupe have been in feature and short films on Fox, Showtime and the Lifetime Network. Many of the troupe members are professional actors of stage and screen and comedy teachers. The members range from their early 30s to their 70s.

"It's great to have all that level of expertise, have that level of life wisdom and also have the energy of some of the younger (cast)," he said.

Hannaway said the cast performs for the love of improv.

"I've heard so many stories about improv-ers, you're out on the street handing out fliers trying to get enough people in the theater to see it," Hannaway said. "It's always a struggle to get people in there, but they always walk out with a smile on their face and are just excited about the experience."

The Second Story Theater is located at 710 Pier Ave. Tickets are $10. For more information, visit, or call (310) 318-1705.