Player Spotlight: Chris “Don’t Squeeze the” Scharmen

Posted on 25. Feb, 2011 by in Blog, CSz Culture

As a San Jose native, Chris has probably lived in San Jose longer than any other CSz player. During his college years, he stumbled across (what was then) a brand new San Jose show called ComedySportz. “It was love at first sight!” He returned to the shows again and again, each time bringing more people with him – some against their will – and they loved it every time! After teaching an Improv summer school class as well as hosting an Improv Club at school, Chris figured it was time that he actually took a CSz improv workshop to properly learn the skills of improv. And the rest, as they say, is history. Well, actually all of it is.

Chris grew up watching a lot of TV sitcoms and began to model himself after Jack Tripper. There have been some pros and cons to this particular choice. However he is a proud child of the 80’s and could possibly win an 80’s Trivia Battle against you – especially if you think Glee wrote the song “Don’t Stop Believing”.

In the real world Chris teaches middle school in Cupertino. Between improvising in the classroom during the week and on the field during the weekends, he makes things up almost 24/7. During his play time Chris enjoys hiking & backpacking (and should probably start doing the latter again soon), being actively involved in his church, playing poker (bucket-listing the WSOP), and most recently – learning to play the guitar.

Player since: New Year’s Eve 2004

Favorite game(s): Reffing, Blind Line, Sing It

Favorite CSz moment: “While not my favorite, it’s my most memorable: My parents and sister came to see one of my earliest shows and during my team’s turn on stage I could just FEEL that our scene was going horribly. After the other team performed it came time for the audience to vote. I looked up, and my mother was voting – for the OTHER team! Thank you, Mom. Thank you.”

Insider Statz:
“The bigger the audience, the less nervous I am. And by ‘bigger’ I don’t mean the size of the people”

“Every accent I do sounds like Irish and Russian mixed together and only lasts about two lines before I completely abandon it.”

“I prefer to be on the Red Team. Why? Mostly because that team sits by an exit door and I can make a quick get-a-away if I had to.”

“When giving suggestions, I find most people in the audience will yell out a food. I try and avoid this by asking for things that cannot be answered this way: ‘Name something people are afraid of’ and yet people will still shout out ‘Cabbage!’ Really? Cabbage??”


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