Self Contained Emotional Statement exercises

Self Contained Emotional Statements: Emotion should be the base of all the improv we do. A “Self Contained Emotional Statement” establishes a stable starting point without dictating a direction and therefore is the initiation most conducive to patterns’ possibilities.

Suggested Exercises:

SCES CIRCLE I – Around a circle, everyone makes a Self Contained Emotional Statement. It can be as simple as “I love it here,” “I hate the arts,” or “I’m uncomfortable.”
It’s a statement. Not a question shifting the responsibility of providing information to your partner. There’s a period. It’s definitive.
It’s an emotional statement. Emotional reaction is one of our three key tools; let’s get to it. You need to feel and, for the reaction, you need to give that feeling a direction. Give X the power to make you feel Y.
Being self-contained, the statement places you on solid ground without dictating the scene to your partners. Mick Napier urges us each to “take care of yourself” without confining the scene. Allow your partner the choice of whether to mirror you in some fashion or to take on something entirely their own. Being self-contained is increasingly an imperative the larger a group you have on stage.


SCES CIRCLE II – In a circle, one person leads with a Self Contained Emotional Statement. Then progressively each person to the right heightens the perspective by agreeing with it – essentially with a “Yes, and.” “I love the beach.” “Yeah, I love the white sand.” “Yeah, I love getting my tan on.” Etc. The initiator gets the final addition. And then the person to their right starts a new SCES.
• Repeating Agreement is funny – what’s better than one person who believes something strange? Two people who feel that same way.
Agreement fosters collaborative building – many people united behind one emotional perspective will be able to heighten creative details to apexes beyond the reach of any single person.

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