In Blind Date, Mimi (here played by Tess Degenstein) selects a date from the audience.
What follows is 90 minutes of conversation that's more heartfelt and charming than your average Tinder match. It's a popular piece of "spontaneous theatre," one that's played New York, London and various cities right across Canada since improv actor Rebecca Northan invented the concept at Toronto's World Stage Festival in 2009.
The premise is as simple as swiping right: our heroine, Mimi, is in need of a date, so she plucks one from the audience. These unsuspecting theatre stars always consent pre-show — as do their partners, if they've brought them.
From there, Mimi and her faux-beau spend the next 90 minutes onstage, getting to know each other.
No guarantee these lessons will revive your love life, but here, the cast of How many "Blind Dates" have you been on? Professionally — as a company, we've done over 600 "Blind Dates." That's split up amongst all of the seven of us who have played the "lead clown," with me likely doing around 350 of those.
Christy Bruce: Oh wow, I've done over 150 performances as Mimi. Tess Degenstein: I've probably done 18 over seven months, so I'm the newest Mimi.
In real-life terms, what's your idea of a great first date?
CB: Connection, open communication, a lot of laughter.
RN: A bubble of time, spent with another person, where safety and true connection happens.