Grapevine: L.A. improv troupe to teach Detroit students

Britney Spears and Katy Perry drop new singles, Reese Witherspoon celebrates 15 years of the ‘bend and snap’ and more celebrity news

Stephanie Steinberg
The Detroit News

Improv troupe The 313 to share stage with Detroit students

The 313, a Los Angeles-based improv troupe, will take the stage with Detroit students from The Improv Project on Aug. 10 at the Boll Family YMCA in Detroit. The troupe includes Second City Detroit alumni Marc Evan Jackson, Maribeth Monroe, Jaime Moyer and Andy Cobb. Sara Fouracre, an on-air personality with 97.1 FM The Ticket, also will be a guest monologist. Proceeds from the event benefit The Detroit Creativity Project, a nonprofit that uses the arts to help Detroit youth build communication skills. The Improv Project is a free 10-week course that teaches improv to middle and high school students. Jackson, who’s had roles in “22 Jump Street,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” NBC’s “Parks and Recreation,” co-founded the nonprofit in 2012 because he was concerned about Detroit’s arts education. “Budget cuts in the Detroit school system have forced many schools to reduce arts programming. But it's really not an expendable part of the curriculum,” he says. “For many of our students, The Improv Project is the only chance they have during the school day to be creative and think outside the box.” Tickets for the 7 p.m. and 9 p.m. shows can be purchased for $15 at The 313 will also perform at 8 p.m. Aug. 13 at the Detroit Improv Festival in Ferndale.

Leslie Jones’ reaction to seeing Whoopi on TV: ‘She looks like me!’

Comdedian Leslie Jones appeared on “The View” on Thursday to promote the new “Ghostbusters” film she’s starring in with Kristen Wiig, Melissa McCarthy and Kate McKinnon. During the segment, Jones shared how Whoopi Goldberg had a tremendous impact on her career. “The day I saw Whoopi Goldberg on television I cried so hard, because I kept looking at my daddy going, ‘Oh my god. There’s somebody on TV that looks like me! She looks like me! Yay! I can be on TV! I can be on TV! I can do it! Look at her! She looks just like me!’ ” Sitting at “The View” table with Goldberg, Jones seized the moment to properly thank her, saying she hopes to return the favor by inspiring others: “When I put on that ‘Ghostbusters’ suit, and little girls see me on TV now, now they’re gonna go, ‘I can do it.’”

Britney Spears, Katy Perry drop singles on same night

The pop scene was buzzing Thursday night when Britney Spears and Katy Perry released new singles, tweeting out links 7 minutes apart. Spears shared her single, “Make Me,” first. Featuring rapper G-Eazy, the song is a part of her forthcoming ninth album and spiked to No. 1 on the iTunes singles chart Friday. Perry’s new single, “Rise,” was No. 2. In a video on Twitter, Perry says she released the song because “of the overall mood of the world today. Now more than ever, there is a need for our world to unite,” she says. “I know together we can rise above the fear in our country and around the world.” NBC Olympics announced it will use the song as an anthem leading up to and during the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.

‘Legally Blonde’ celebrates 15 years

This week marked the 15th anniversary of “Legally Blonde,” the popular chick flick starring Reese Witherspoon as Elle Woods. In celebration, Witherspoon teamed up with Instagram for a teachable moment on how to do the “bend and snap.” If you don’t know what we’re talking about, it’s time to see the movie — or watch and learn from the expert as Witherspoon does an Instabendandsnap with a fuzzy pink pen.

Red Bull House of Art hosts residency exhibition

The Red Bull House of Art in Detroit will host its second residency exhibition July 22. Resident artists Ian Kuali’i of Berkeley, California, Drew Merritt, of Los Angeles, and Michael Reeder, of Taos, New Mexico, have lived and worked at the studio the past three months to create the exhibit that documents their experiences in Detroit. In the past five years, over 80 artists have held residencies at the House of Art in Eastern Market. The event held at 1551 Winder Street from 7- p.m. to 10 p.m. is free and open to the public.

Also …

■ The Motown Museum is taking applications for its third annual Mowtown EDU summer camp Aug. 8-12. Open to a Metro Detroit high school students, the free camp includes lessons on stage presence and musical production. Attendees also will work with actress Rhonda Ross Kendrick, daughter of Berry Gordy Jr. and Diana Ross, and DJ instructor Morris Porter. Applications can be found at Application deadline is July 20.

Compiled by Stephanie Steinberg

Saturday’s birthdays

Will Ferrell, 49

Barry Sanders, 48

Jayma Mays, 37

Luke Hemmings, 20