Lou and Amy are creative and passionate about people connecting – whether that’s on stage or at work. They are accomplished theatre performers and have over thirty years collective experience in the corporate and government sectors. In 2016, they founded Lightbulb Improv to bridge these worlds and build corporate skills through genuine fun and techniques from an unexpected place – improvised performance.
Together they have developed a range of improv courses that skilfully link capability development and improv to offer a fresh way to learn new skills for your workplace. Their sessions offer immediate hands-on exercises so participants can try their new skills immediately. They workshops show how the principles from the stage are valuable, relevant tools in the modern workplace, and in life.
Lou and Amy are both raising families and know all about the rollercoaster of work and life. They are passionate about supporting women in the workplace. Based on their own experiences, they have developed specialised courses to get women ready to achieve their career and leadership goals.
Lightbulb Improv was founded in 2016 by three women with a vision to build a troupe that could deliver professional improvised theatre to Canberra: Lou Maconachie, Amy Crawford and Merriden Varrall.
Since 2016, the Lightbulb Troupe has held a consistent place at Smith’s Alternative. Each month they delight audiences with their unique flavour of warm, funny and surprising unscripted theatre. Together, Lou and Amy lead the dedicated group of performers, who train ardently and foster a strong sense of play and honesty that keeps audiences coming back.
As reviewed in BMA (May 2021)“ Lightbulb Improv’s performers are naturally comical, with excellent timing. Performers inhabited characters intuitively, as though born to them, and responded to one another at a second’s notice.”
To learn more about Lightbulb, check out the artists profile in Canberra’s entertainment magazine, BMA.
To learn more about upcoming shows, check out here.
Meet the directors
Lou is an accomplished improvisational actor whose performance credits include winner of the International Challenge (2015), finalist in the National Theatresports Championships (2016) and has performed with some of the top names in improvisation, including a duo with internationally acclaimed improviser David Razowsky. Lou teaches improvisation to beginner and advanced students and has directed and performed in a range of unscripted shows, from comedy games to full length improvised plays and musicals.
Lou combines her improvisation skills with over 15 years experience in change management, corporate communications, talent management, training and coaching. Lou has worked across the private, public and non-profit sectors for companies of all shapes and sizes. Her clients include Westpac, Origin Energy and Lifeline as well as various Government Departments.
Lou holds a Bachelor in Communication and Media, Prince 2 Certification and Certificate IV in Training and Assessment.
As the youngest of four children, Amy has been entertaining since she could talk. She performed, directed and produced University of Queensland Law Revues as well as other stage productions, receiving the ‘best actor’ award in the Short and Sweet Festival 2019. Amy performed with international improvisers in the “Improvention” festival (Canberra) and the New Zealand Improv Festival (Wellington). Amy co-founded and performs each month with Lightbulb Improv. She co-produces the ‘Canberra Unscripted’ festival and performed in several shows (2017-2019), as well as performing and directing a show for the ‘Art Not Apart’ festival (2018-2019). She is a regular performer with Canberra Repertory Theatre.
Amy has a Bachelor of Laws (honours) and a Bachelor of Arts (Communication and Language, Media Studies) from the University of Queensland. She also holds a Drama and Performance Licentiate Diploma (Teacher) from the Australian Music Examinations Board.