I Love Lunch! The Musical

(View it larger on YouTube)
Song by Anthony King and Scott Brown (Gutenberg! The Musical!)

For our latest mission, seven undercover agents staged a spontaneous musical during lunch at the Trump Tower atrium. The mission was filmed for a segment on The Today Show and includes a cameo from Ann Curry. Enjoy the video first and then go behind the scenes with our report below.

Still Photos: Katie Sokoler and Chad Nicholson.
Additional video work by: Matt Adams

The Today Show has featured Improv Everywhere a few times in the past, and this fall they asked if we could create a mission for them that Ann Curry could have a part in. Specifically, they were big fans of Food Court Musical and wanted to work with us to stage something similar. (In the time between the show approaching us and the segment airing, we had the opportunity to produce Grocery Store Musical as well.) The Today Show crew would produce the mission (providing hidden cameras, microphones, and a PA system), and we would be in charge of the creative side.

Agent Brown rehearses with the cast

Once again longtime agents and Gutenberg! The Musical! authors Scott Brown & Anthony King served as our songwriting team. They also both appeared as actors in the musical, along with some senior IE Agents and comedians from The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. We had a rehearsal at a Manhattan studio where Agent Brown taught the song, and Agent King worked on the choreography.

Rehearsing in the space

The night before the mission, we were able to rehearse in our location. The Today Show was able to get permission from Trump Tower to stage the musical in the seating area of their atrium, a popular lunch spot for tourists and people who work in the building.

The incredible tech set up

The Today Show pulled out all the stops, tech wise. The crew set up in a huge storage room just off the atrium. There were seven robotic HD cameras set up in the space, each controlled by a dedicated operator via joystick. An eighth camera filmed the control room for behind-the-scenes shots.

Our camera angles

Zooming in on Agent King

The cameras were extremely well hidden in the space either behind tinted glass or hidden among plants on the balcony above.

We also hid speakers in the plants all around the seating area, so that the song could be amplified live during the mission.

Ann Curry wasn’t able to make it to the rehearsals, so we met her for the first time the morning of the mission. We worked in the back room and taught her the choreography, and Agent Brown helped her learn her part. Ann is not a singer, so she was nervous about getting her line just right. She was super easy to work with and very quickly became one of the team.

Agents in place at the start of the mission

We staged the mission a few times throughout the day to make sure we got the best possible take and camera coverage. The first take started around 12 Noon. We had to wait about a half hour between each take to make sure we had a new group of people dining around us.

Agent Hiller starts the song, “I love lunch / It’s half the way to dinner”

Heads started to turn

Agent Lindquist stands up and declares, “I love lunch!”

A man laughs at Agent Lindquist joining in

Agents Brown and Thomas stand up and join the song
“I like my chili with corn / I like my sandwich served warm”

Agent Hiller runs downstairs in time for his next line

Large crowds of tourists started watching from the balcony

“We’re gonna use our sporks now!”

Sporks (that I “borrowed” from a Taco Bell) held high in the air

“We’re major lunch dorks now!”

Laughing at our choreography

“There ain’t no shame in loving lunch!”

A member of the NYPD interrupts the singers

“You’re singing a song about lunch?”

“I love lunch toooooo!”

I think Agent Santangeli’s performance as the cop fooled the guy above, because he was laughing pretty hard when he figured out he was in on it.

“We all love lunch / We’re gonna sing it louder!”

“I’m eating clam chowder!”

Agent Curry was awesome. She nailed her line and then removed her hat to join the finale (she wore a hat to try to stay incognito lest she be spotted by fans before her part.)

With so many tourists there, it seemed like everyone had a camera

Applauding the finale

After the song ended our agents, including Agent Curry, sat back at their respective tables and continued eating lunch as if nothing had happened.

Telling stories afterwards in the back

We had a blast working on this mission. It was an excellent opportunity to get to work with The Today Show and their fancy equipment, and it was nice to have our work reach their massive television audience. Hopefully along the way we were able to deliver a very important message: There ain’t no shame in loving lunch.

Mission Accomplished


– The Today Show’s segment on this mission:

– Many more photos in higher resolution:
Agent Sokoler’s Flickr Set
Agent Nicholson’s Flickr Set
– Our other musicals: Food Court Musical & Grocery Store Musical
– Buy the cast recording of Gutenberg! The Musical, also by Brown & King.

If this is your first time here:
-our nearly 100 other missions can be seen here: Missions
-sign up for our RSS feed and Newsletter
-New Yorkers join our NY Agents list
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75 Responses to I Love Lunch! The Musical

  1. Andy says:

    Why couldn’t I be in it!!

  2. Agent Shannanigans says:

    A huge thumbs up for good TV time from your loving and loyal fan in Florida!!

  3. Agent JLee says:

    Fantastic! Another great food-related song! (And Agent Hiller’s got a GREAT voice!)
    Bravo to Ann Curry for joining in! She seemed really fun to work with!

  4. CameraGirl says:

    Gah another great mission! I need to move to New York :(

  5. EIRO says:

    You are extremely hilarious and great performers!!!

    What do I need to get in the team? (starting by living in USA -_-)

  6. Leslie says:

    Too funny…and what a great sport Ann is! Bravo to her and the rest of the agents. Looking forward to the next mission!!

  7. Allen says:

    Nice one! I still think Food Court Musical was better, but this is pretty entertaining. Out of curiosity, is Agent Santangeli an actual NYPD officer?

  8. Ian says:

    Excellent performance as usual!! I would LOVE to be a part of one of these some day!

  9. Elle says:

    Can’t wait to get to a computer with sound to watch the musical, but judging by the written report it was another fantastic success!
    The security/cop character always seems to add an extra level to it – especially since the audience all seem to instinctively side with the crazy singing people. Why oh why do I not live in New York?

  10. Umandsf says:

    Ah, another great mission! Once again, a silly song that too darn catchy. I think this image is my favorite: http://improveverywhere.com/images/lun24a.jpg

  11. Mary says:

    Seems like the paragraph that starts “When we did Food Court Musical…” was lifted right from the Grocery Store Musical post. Plagiarizing yourselves!

    I do love these musicals, repetition or no.

    • Charlie Todd says:

      actually that was just an error on my part. I used the last post as a template for this one and somehow that paragraph got left in. Thanks for spotting it!

  12. Julie says:

    I love you guys but the last two missions have me worried. I miss the public involvement. You are going too commercial.

  13. the old hawk says:

    best one ever. i can not stop sing the song

  14. Floris says:

    Woah, I’d love to see some footage from that backstage cam! Great show!

  15. Oscar says:

    Again! Again!

    I don’t care what anybody says, I WUVS the Musical Pranks! Pretty soon you could do a whole Broadway show!

    Props to Agent Ann Curry, and the rest of the Improv Agents. Aren’t you guys exhausted though? That’s two Musicals and several large missions in one year!

  16. Tom says:

    I liked this one much more than the Grocery Store one about smushing food together.

    “Don’t sing a song, man.” I love it!

  17. Jasper van Weerd says:

    Where are the reactions of the people in the video?

    Thats what makes the pranks most interesting…

  18. Jaypoc says:

    Great job everybody. Including Agent Curry! I agree this one was much better than the grocery store musical. Careful IE, you’ll have to change your name to Impromptu Musicals Everywhere.

    The only bad part of these events is that we (your fans) couldn’t be there to see it live! I certainly hope to be lucky enough catch some of your “closed” antics live at some point. Until then, you can count on me to be at the larger gatherings when my schedule permits.

  19. Chelsea says:

    Love this! I can only hope that some day I will happen to witness one of these impromptu musical numbers … I really don’t think I can imagine anything more fun than a spontaneous musical breaking out in the midst of an otherwise typical day. Would make my life. “He does this every day” cracked me up.

  20. Sherry Belul says:

    I LOVE this! Every time I watch your mission videos they make me cry. Happy cry. What an amazing wake-up call you provide. :-)
    PLEASE please come to San Francisco and let me be in one of your missions. Oh, and huge congrats on the Today Show!

  21. I felt a little disappointed when I saw you had performed another musical, so close to Grocery Store Musical (which actually happened after this one, even so). Sounded like creativity was running low. And that feeling increased a little as I saw the participation of the policeman, so similar to Food Court Musical’s security guard.

    Nevertheless, this prank had a lot of quality, forcing me to include it among the best spontaneous musicals I’ve seen so far. It’s a retarded (in a funny way) and funny (in a retarded way) song, I liked it. ^^

    And, of course, even though the creative side may not have been as creative as possible (in my opinion), the most important objective is always to cause a scene to the public there. Thus, I’d also say the mission was quite successful.

    But you should make the lyrics for this one and Grocery Store Musical available in an easier way, seriously.

    Finally, I’d like to raise one mostly important question:

    FOOD Court Musical
    GROCERY Store Musical
    I love LUNCH! The Musical

    Why all IE musicals have deal with food???

  22. ayjay says:

    “He does this every day…” Love it!

    I just hope IE doesn’t become too repetitive with the musicals.

  23. Agent Yo-Yo says:

    I spotted Agent Good in the background at 0:39, I kept expecting him to jump in on the act . . .
    Another great mission accomplished!

  24. MoyJoy says:

    I’ve never seen that many people in the Trump Building ever. That place is a ghosttown.

  25. IE Junkie says:

    I loved eating lunch while watching this in Minnesota. It’s good to see you getting the attention and sponsorship you deserve. Bravo!!

  26. Ed says:

    Another winner! Love these big productions BUT don’t keep escalating to a point where you abandon the simple, small scale missions — like high-fiving Rob on the subway escalator. It’s the mix that makes your work so charming and wonderful.

  27. Kevin says:

    ANNE CURRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I want to be in an ImprovEverywhere musical!!!!

  28. Keith says:

    I’m even eating lunch right now I love it so much!

  29. Jorge G says:

    As always “what a great mission.”

  30. I for one love dinner more than lunch, but I LOVE your new food court musical! Great job :)

  31. DaBam says:

    I loved this. I just can’t believe that another musical happened so soon. It’s great to see Improv getting publicity. It seems like the Today Show really loves you guys.

    Keep up the good work.

  32. bruno007 says:

    The best of the three musicals to date. Congrats Agent Scott and King!

  33. Gonzalo says:

    muy buo..

  34. Amanda G says:

    Yet another good show of the talent in your group! Loved this one and it was good to see Ann Curry participate and then show you in a good light! Congrats!

  35. DrLockard says:

    Great one! Was there when I was in New York, which is a rare event, so whenever you get something going here in the center of the country–DFW–let me know! Thanks again!

  36. Michael Perry says:

    I wish that had happend when I had lunch there on my first trip too America

  37. hmm... says:

    Should’ve hired some better singers…the stunt is not entertaining /loses its credibility if the actors can’t sing.

  38. Sessie says:

    Man I love lunch too!!! jajaja these guys are fantastic!

  39. Stan says:

    Great stuff! Man, I wish you folks could get into Congress and sing some sense into them! Perhaps give them a Circle Line Tour of public opinion!

  40. pau zurita says:

    esto hace que se me ponga la piel de gallina, es tan hermoso lo que esta gente hace, quiero participar algún día.

  41. Kim says:

    I love your musicals ones! This one was great!

    We actually something similar to these last weekend. We have Flash Mob here in Adelaide and we did Kiss the Girl from The Little Mermaid. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5-Q8LXSJdMQ for a video or http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/album.php?aid=118524&id=666183173 for pics )

    It was so much fun and Im glad we did it since I cant be part of Improv Everywhere events.

    You guys are great! Keep up the laughs!

  42. Deb says:

    I LOVE you guys!

  43. coren says:

    I’d love Improv Everywhere: the Musical to happen…maybe a few songs like these missions where you’re doing it in public, then some sort of problem happens because of it…I don’t know, it has potential!

    Also, that 9th camera, in the bottom right, looks like it says multi…it seems to be all the views at once. Including itself. Was that true? I always love little recursion bits like that (this is totally not to do with the prank at all, bnut still)

  44. Angel says:

    I saw you on Chelsea Latley and laughed my ass off so had to look it up offically and I LOVED it.

  45. Lindsay says:

    The mission that introduced me to your group! I live in Jersey and I actually do sing, act, and dance. I’m a professional ballerina. All that aside, I’d LOVE to join in a mission one of these days. What do I have to do to get in on this? :-D

  46. M says:

    I like this site soo much!
    Especially the musicals and I like the comments of the people who are there! In my country they dont do stuff like this!

  47. CSE says:

    Amazing. I am speechless. Typing frantically, but speechless.

    Keep it up. I love the feel behind the musical missions. It’s so fun.

  48. Ms Lala says:

    OH MY GOD, That was one of the most hilarious things I have ever seen. That main blonde guy is hilarious!!! I love how he belts it ridiculously – oh and my other fave was the off key “Chowdah” lady – what a great compilation and satire on musical theater!

    Man, I live in the Big ISland of Hawaii but I wish this existed here – I would love to do this every weekend

  49. KD says:

    Having a commentator in the character of “Paul” added one more level of fun to the wonderful silliness.

  50. Susan says:

    Looks like a whole lot of fun! I would LOVE to see this happen in person!

  51. Curtis says:

    I LOVE IE and all the missions… I think the word to describe what I feel when I watch these missions is whimsy (think best game ever)and like many others they bring happy tears. My only fear is that IE seems to be moving away from the grassroots missions and staging more technical missions which require multiple takes like grocery store musical, and that sort of loses the improv aspect. I know you have to get out there with these to feed the publiciy machine of pop culture… just don’t forget the old ways is all I’m saying.


  52. Katie M. says:

    Man I love this mission… and Lunch. I wish i could get this song and listen to it every time I eat lunch!

  53. Randy Sabourin says:

    Fun Yes! Improv NO!

  54. Roman says:

    “Jeff. Jeff, don’t sing a song man…”
    hahaha – agent in blue shirt, thank you

  55. shen says:

    question for anyone who may know. where did they get the music from (made themselves or did they take a karaoke version of a song with their own lyrics)?

    thanks :]

  56. So great! The way it started was brilliant. Totally believeable. I love the slow transition from “this is really happening” to “oh! This is a setup!”


  57. Rabia says:

    i loved the Lunch Musical !and i love the originality and creative thought to each improv performance! hoping wishfully to be able to do something with the group at some point!… *sigh*

  58. Marie says:

    IE – Wonderful. Shared with many friends and family (woo……sounds too awfully familiar)……you brought something special into the day for a few folks who really needed the “perk” midday. Now if the lyrics would just go away………..

  59. Agent Di Smith says:

    Man, that’s great. I liked this one a lot better than the grocery store musical, but I still love ’em all!
    Ah, how I’d love to participate in one of the missions! If only I didn’t live on the other side of the country.

  60. If luvs a disease den im very ill.but i dont want medicine i wont take no pill.i will suffer dis illness cos it makes me see exactly how much u mean 2 me!

  61. Isaias says:


    It’s Amazing, and i have no words, i just can say YOU’RE AMAZING.

    Brazil loves you,

  62. Scott says:

    I saw this on TV…On the Today Show…I thought it was FANTASTIC!!! I LOVED IT!!! I am now a fan…Keep it up, This was an excellent performance!!!

  63. kelsey says:

    Wow. You guys rock! I love all the crazy, wacky stuff you do, and I wish I could join the fun. Unfortunately, I do not live anywhere near you guys. I love improv games in drama class, but this is just hilarious. Come to Hawaii someday!

    Once again, you guys make my day. Thank you and God bless you all.

    Keep it up!

  64. Ian says:

    Some theater friends and I would really like to perform something like this. Is there any way we could have access to the music files to play on a PA system?

  65. the new easy says:

    “Jeff, don’t sing a song, man.”


  66. Linn says:

    Guys! You´re magical!!

    I would love to have som “”improveverywhere” in sweden! need to think about to start something by myself!

    Soooo Sweeeeeeeeet!!

  67. Miguel Angel says:

    You guys are soooo amazing!!

    I love your missions, specially the musicals!! It’s kinda spreading the “joy of living”…

    One of your performances can turn anyone’s day into a better day!

    Hope you start an “office” in Barcelona, Spain…

    Please let us know the lyrics of this song so we can spread the message: There’s no shame in loving lunch!

  68. Mike says:

    Here’s to the ladies (and gentlemen) who lunch! Aren’t they too much?

    I enjoyed the writeup on the NYT City Room Blog and I’m reading through the entire site… wow, this sounds like so much fun.

    (For other lunch-related songs, there’s also “Lunch: The Musical,” a 1994 studio album featuring Melissa Manchester, Carol Burnett, Faith Prince, and Kim Carnes.)

  69. steve says:

    You are all awesome!!! love What you do!! especially the musicals.. thanks….Good job!! from, Lake havasu city AZ

  70. ABit says:

    Best wishes from Germany, i love your spontanous musicals, they are absolute fantastic!

    Hope there will be another one!


  71. Krizpy says:

    Ahh… this made my day. :) Keep it up, you guys!

  72. SImon says:

    We need more of you guys humor in this city. Keep up the great work and love to be part of your missions.