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


OTHER RESOURCES:

- 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
-We have a book and a DVD for sale!

Comments

comments

This entry was posted in Missions. Bookmark the permalink.

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!