Interview with Feña Ortalli about the improv magazine Status

Seit 2011 gibt es “Status” – ein monatliches Impro-Magazin auf spanisch. Nun gibt es zusätzlich eine englischsprachige Ausgabe. Impro-News hatte am 6.9.2017 die Möglichkeit, mit Feña Ortalli über dieses große Projekt zu sprechen. And now we switch to english …

macro Hi Feña, thanks for your time. We want to talk about the improv magazine “Status”. But first, please introduce yourself.
Feña Hello, thanks for the invitation. I’m Feña Ortalli, I was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina and now I’m living in Madrid, Spain. I’ve been improvising since 2001 and improv is my job and passion 😉 I run an improv magazine called Status since 2011 and I’m very proud of it.
macro And we met at SWIMP festival in Uppsala. What is the idea behind Status?
Feña Status was born to connect improvisers worldwide. I had the chance to travel a lot doing improv, watching shows, taking workshops and I wanted to share that with everyone.
I love connecting improvisers and spreading their ideas, opinions, wishes. It has opened me several doors and I believe it opened doors for many people too.
macro So it was in english from the beginning.
Feña No, only in Spanish. We started the english edition in July! It was a necessary step but also hard work but finally I made my mind and did it. It was the only way to keep growing.
macro I was really surprised that an improv magazine exists and I haven’t heard from it.
Feña Hehe, yes. It was very important for the spanish speaking community because there aren’t many books translated into spanish or blogs.
macro How big is the spannish improv community?
Feña so, it was a way to share all this things to a huge community like the Latin American, Spanish is pretty huge. Imagine that almost of Latin America speaks spanish, plus Spain – there’s improv everywhere.
We have big communities in Argentina, Chile, Peru, Colombia, Brasil (though they speak portuguese), Mexico and of course Spain
macro Yes, I know some folks from there. That are very impressive players and they do very different improv styles. The varity is great. What is in a typical Status issue?
Feña It usually has the following parts:
OPINION. An editorial article written by me or by someone else about something that’s in our minds.
BIO. A biography of someone I think it’s important for our art.
INTERVIEW. The cover and main article, we’ve interviewed a looooot of people.
TECHNIQUE. An article about something related to improv or other complementary artforms.
CHRONICLES/CRITIC. We publish either chronicles of festivals and tours, or critics of shows.
IMPROWORLD. We interview an improv group from a certain city or country.
and NEWS.
macro Sounds like there is something for every improvisor. How often do you release an issue?
Feña monthly! We just released our 75th issue (the third in english).
macro Wow, a lot of work.

Status Magazine English Issues
The 1st english issues

Feña Yes, it is. Sometimes I ask myself why did I start with this madness.
macro And the cool thing: you can grab your copy immediately. It’s available in your web shop, right?
Feña Yes, you can download our issues in our payhip plattform for only 1 dollar each or subscribe for $10 per year. If you want to practice your spanish, you can download all of our issues also.
macro Oh, good. My only spanish words are sí and dos cervezas por favor 🙂
And now to write in english is a big change. What are your plans with it?
Feña For now, getting more subscribers and spreading the word to the improv world. Eventually it is my dream to see it printed sometime!
macro Yes, that would be great because it has a nice design. It’s looks like a print ready thing.
Feña It was the main idea, to make it nice and interesting. I made the first design and then I started a crowdfunding campaign to hire a designer and do a makeover. The campaign was held in 2013 and was backed by many people worldwide. The spanish edition was (and still is) free for all subscribers, but it’s also available for purchase – for instance if you want to read previous issues. Anyway, we also have most of our articles in our website.
macro Ah, great. So there is also an option to comment and interact?
Feña Not yet, but I’m about to do add comments to our posts. We have comments and interactions in our social networks – we are on FB, Twitter and Instagram.
macro Yeah, that works too. So can people do something for it except subscribing – which everybody should do.

Feña Ortalli
Feña Ortalli

Feña I know there’s a lot of people out there that still don’t know about Status and that they would be happy to discover it.
macro So spread the word! Ok last question: what are your next improv plans?
Feña Short term. I’m doing a tour in 10 days to Finland, Estonia (for TILT), Bulgaria (for their festival) and France and I’m starting some new improv courses in october in two of the most important improv schools in Madrid (not oficial yet). It will be my first full season living in Europe.
macro Ah ok, before you switched back and forth with South America?
Feña I lived all my life in Argentina but always tried to travel as much as I could. So, the last 3 years I’ve been coming to Europe once a year to teach, perform and take part of festivals. Once you cross the ocean it’s easier to travel around here than in America.
macro So, than good luck with your season and welcome to Europe. It sounds very good, a lot of nice festivals and countries.
Feña Thank you!!
macro And thank you for your time and all the work to make improv better.
Feña Danke schön macro!

You can buy single Status issues here: or do the annual subscription.
Website: or follow Status on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram



Mirko 'macro' Fichtner schreibt seit 2011 für Impro-News. Er ist Mitglied bei 4gewinnt und Mitorganisator des Berliner Impro Marathon. Webseite:
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