By Erin Randolph firstname.lastname@example.org
'Rubber Duck Army'
Jenkins' first audience was in
fourth grade, when he stepped
up in front of his class to do
an impression of Pee-wee Herman.
That was before he was a pervert,
of course. (Herman, not Jenkins,)
And in high school in Earlham,
he was the class clown. But he
was also the class president.
It was there that he got interested
in improv, and it was at Iowa
State University that he became
interested in sketch comedy. Now
a Des Moines resident, Jenkins,
28, who has been a member of both
The Brink and Comedy XPeriment,
is starting his own sketch comedy
troupe, Rubber Duck Army.
The Army's meant to appeal to
the twentysomethings who perch
on the concrete out front of Java
Joes or herd outside of the Vaudeville
Mews smoking cigarettes on Friday
and Saturday nights. The Army's
Friday night performance at 7
p.m. will be its introduction
to Des Moines, and one Jenkins
hopes will add to a burgeoning
youthful vibe in Des Moines thanks
to events like iPod Monday.
Rubber Duck Army's performances
will integrate live sketch with
video, and will include a lot
of pop culture parodies, from
commercials to local celebrities
to the Bush twins. Six members
strong, the Army includes members
of The Brink and Comedy XPeriment.
Jenkins says the troupe will be
a lot like the president: "We're
both firmly against evildoers
and we both elicit a great deal
of laughter when people hear us
hopefully, it will give area residents
yet another option on a thin,
yet growing, entertainment calendar.
The residents of Iowa rent more
movies than residents in any other
state, per capita, Jenkins says.
Which basically means we're all
a bunch of lame asses who stay
home at night instead of seeking
out other forms of entertainment.
"People can go spend $9
to see 'Wedding Crashers' for
the third time at Wynnsong 39
or Century 40," Jenkins says.
"Or they can come to the
Mews and see something different.
"I see all the kids on
the loop and outside on Fourth
Street. They seem underserved.
Or maybe they're just fine hanging
out, but it seems like there can
be other options for them. I'm
not saying the loop scoopers are
our intended audience, but it
seems like there should be something
else for them to do than to drive
around Des Moines again and again
and again. Hopefully this will
be something that the kids that
are always out here will embrace."
The Des Moines Playhouse will
hold auditions for "The Best
Christmas Pageant Ever" on
Sunday at 5 p.m. for youth under
18. For more information, call
255-3741... "The Full Monty"
will come to Stephens Auditorium
in Ames on Saturday, Oct. 29,
at 7:30 p.m. The play, which contains
adult material, is $34-$38 for
adults, and $17-$19 for ISU students
and those under 18... StageWest's
popular monthly play-reading series,
Scriptease, will be on Tuesday
at 7 p.m. at the Noodle Zoo in
the East Village. CV
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