Laughter From The Desk of...David Joplin (Marketing Director) #okciLaughDesk

Laughter From The Desk of...David Joplin (Marketing Director) #okciLaughDesk

  • Jan 21 2021
  • Written by Kendon Lacy
  • (2 votes)

Ghosts, Jazz, and Film are just some of the wonderful things discussed as I pick back up on our blog series "Laughter From The Desk of..." With the COVID-19 pandemic, it's been a while since my last interview with a staff member. That said I was pretty excited to get to sit down with OKC Improv Marketing Director, David Joplin. You've most likely seen David in the front row of shows taking pictures for social media and other various marketing efforts. Outside of being the "Marketing Guy" for OKC Improv, I learned a lot about how he found out about OKC Improv as well as other life interests and organizations he's worked with. Here's our conversation:

KENDON: David! Thanks for taking the time to sit down and talk with me. Let's start by getting some background from you. As Marketing Director, what are some of the local places that you've served on?

 DAVID: In the past, I have worked at the following organizations: 

For over 20 years I have served as the Marketing Director for multiple Oklahoma-based organizations. Professionally, I have been the Marketing Director for Canadian Valley Technology Center, Moore Norman Technology Center, OSU-OKC, and Northeastern State University.

As a community volunteer, I have served as the Marketing Director for Norman, Oklahoma’s Jazz In June Festival, Meals On Wheels, March of Dimes’ “WalkAmerica” Fundraising Event, Co-Chair of the Norman Chamber’s “Leadership Norman” Program and I was the Co-Chair of the Moore Chamber’s “Leadership Moore” Program. I also oversaw the creation, development, and implementation of the Oklahoma CareerTech System’s “Elevating Our Economy” statewide marketing campaign. 

KENDON: Dude! You've served a lot! On top of that, you've also dabbled with film as well? What was that like?

DAVID: I was one of 30 applicants accepted to UCLA’s film school in 1988, but was ultimately unable to transfer there due to the cost to my family of me attending and living in the L.A./Westwood area. I was also fortunate to have worked on 3 full-length motion pictures - two of which you probably have never seen but I have them on video so we can have a watch party. Also, I was an uncredited “Location Scout” for the Location Manager, Ric McElvin for a movie you might have heard of called “Rainman” - and yes, I can confirm, I’m actually slightly taller than Tom Cruise.

KENDON: Haha. That better be true or you're getting sued by Tom Cruise! Hey, was the first time you heard about OKC during your interview process of becoming Marketing Director?

DAVID: Actually, the first time I learned of OKC Improv was through my former co-worker Clint Vrazel (OKC Improv Co-Founder). We both worked at Moore Norman Technology Center where I was the Marketing Director and he worked in our Enrollment and Information Center. I also remember soon after OKC Improv was formed when both Clint and Merri Gambill assisted with providing improvised performance “reactions” to some changes that were being implemented for the Tech Center during a district-wide professional development session. Hilarious!

 KENDON: Oh man! I had no idea you knew Clint! I also had no idea that you knew Merri Gambill. They're both great! What was your impression of OKC Improv when you attended your first show?

DAVID: As far as my impressions of OKC Improv when I attended my first show: My thoughts were WOW! The energy, creativity, quick-witted responses, by all the troupes and their members, were phenomenal. In essence, the performers are more than just “quick on their feet” and “witty”, but there TRULY is an “art” to this and a “LOT OF PREPARATION” that goes into each performance - OF ALL THE PEOPLE ON STAGE! WOW - AGAIN! Now that I’m in classes for OKC Improv - I TRULY SEE THAT FIRST HAND! 

KENDON: A lot of times, you can be seen front row photographing some of the great moments that happen from the OKCI stage. In saying that, do you have a favorite moment from a show that you remember capturing? Tell us about it!

DAVID: It’s hard to pick just a few but I will try: Being a Sci-Fi fan, I particularly enjoy Partners In Time shows. Very funny, witty, and intelligent humor. And I love the chemistry between Roger and Tyler! Although one time during a Partners In Time show in March, I was forced to take an inordinate number of photos of each of their noses: There was a moment when Roger and Tyler “squared-off’ and, literally went “NOSE TO NOSE” on stage … for a purposely VERY LONG TIME. SO LONG IN FACT … that I was able to get WAY TOO MANY PHOTOS (MORE than I EVER wanted) of the two of them “LITERALLY” staring NOSE TO NOSE. It was AWESOME … for the audience! … for me, well, let’s just say that I still have nightmares of that vision VICIOUSLY DISPLAYED UPON MY RETINAE! HA HA!!!

 But really, all of the acts are SO TALENTED. From Mojito, The Grownups, Rated P, Tally, Improv Spouses, Artful Codgers, Everybody and their Dog, and more recently formed groups like FUBAR, the talent displayed


is phenomenal. So funny and talented - and smart!!! I know I sound like a “Marketing Director” - but it’s all true! I’m extremely happy to be a part of such a talented organization!

KENDON: Well we're glad to have someone on the team that also has such a passion for the organization! Also, Partners in Time is consistently a great show. You mentioned earlier that you're in OKC Improv classes. How exciting! What are your thoughts about it? Are you excited about being on the other side of the stage and being a student performer? 

DAVID: ABSOLUTELY!!! Although, I am NOT NEARLY as funny as the people I just mentioned in those acts! But what is great about the classes, is that the classes help you with all kinds of skills including; public speaking, being able to think on your feet in an instant, and overall just help you strengthen your skills as a performer. All of the teachers are great, patient, and really care about you. They are so supportive and help you develop your own personal skill set for the stage. It is truly one of the most supportive learning environments that I have ever been a part of and I have worked with educators for over half a century - Gee, now I feel old! HA HA!

KENDON: Ha ha. You served as Marketing Director for "OK Jazz in June." Tell us a little bit about that experience!

DAVID: Being the Marketing Director for Jazz in June in Norman was one of the best experiences I’ve EVER been apart. It’s just a huge event that brings in people from throughout the state - and in this part of the country. While was on-board, we brought in international stars like Chuck Mangionea and David Sanborn. I also LOVED some of the really cool band names that we got to work with like, Garaj Mahal and J.D. Thompson and the Big Bad Wolves! Classic! But, it is A LOT OF HARD WORK! Don’t get me wrong - I enjoyed the work, but for the 3-4 months leading up to the event, it can take A LOT of time. You live and breathe “music notes” in your sleep! But it is so worth it.    

KENDON: I love David Sanborn. That's amazing that you got to see him perform! Finally, as I always end these interviews, let's play a round of 5 things! Basically, you just have to list the first 5 things, that come to mind in accordance with the category I'm going to give you. I hear, besides being a "Marketing Guy," you also do a little bit of Ghost Hunting here and there. So for this round of 5 things I would like for you to give me 5 new slogans for the Ghostbusters if you happen to be their Marketing Director.

DAVID:

1. “Who ya gonna call when Stranger Things oozes through the walls?”

2. “Vaping Stone Cold Specters since 1984.”

3. “Is that an EMF detector in your pocket or are you just glad to see us?”

4. “Spooky Action in the HOUSE!”

5. “Who ya gonna call - our court-appointed attorney to defend us against charges that we left behind an inordinate amount of “ectoplasm slime residue” on your property?”

Thanks to David for taking the time! You can catch up on previous "Laughter From The Desk of..." interviews by checking out the "Blog" section of the okcimprov.com website.

Want to take an improv class like David? Visit okcimprov.com/classes!

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