It’s 2015! About time to update the Improv As Improv Does Best curriculum.
For links to individual lessons and activities, go to the full Curriculum page.
Here’s a video of me teaching the group the Kick The Duck, Red Rover exercise. It’s long, containing many iterations of the exercise by the group with lots of rambling by me in between those iterations. But talk about a progression! Watch them grow:
Through “Kick The Duck, Red Rover,” players learn to focus outward and make the random purposeful by mirroring, heightening and supporting one another.
“Improv As Improv Does Best” laughs come from: Continue reading
Objective: To build scenes by exploring and heightening committed perspectives.
An Opening is the first piece of a long-form performance presented to the audience. Every show has one. Not every show uses one.
Objective: To responsibly and recklessly endow scene partners (with characteristics, information, activities, etc.) that s/he must accept.
Improvisation: Making it up as you go along.
A group of players gets on stage without previously rehearsed lines or blocking and acts out. The audience understands that this show is constructed from nothing before their eyes. In these aspects, improvisational performance differentiates itself from any other performance medium.
Improvisation then is at its best when it leverages its monopoly on spontaneous collaboration before a live audience. When a group of individuals creates something out of nothing together on stage before their eyes, the audience sees magic. When improv is as improv does best, it is magic. Magic. “How’d you all do that?” Continue reading
THE SELF CONTAINED EMOTIONAL STATEMENT
How do you start an improv scene? My answer was forged from the perspective of giants’ shoulders.
Mick Napier, of The Annoyance Theater, says we start with just one thing.
– Assume a posture.
– Grab an object.
– Start a motion.
– Engage your environment.
– Embody a character.
What do you do with that one thing? Expand, says Napier. Discover through “if this
than what” extrapolation. Build that one thing out, or draw a line to another point of the
The direction I believe you should expand to – the scene start structure most conducive to
good improvisation – is the Self-Contained Emotional Statement.
It can be as simple as:
– I love it here.
– I hate the arts.
– I’m uncomfortable.
The Self-Contained Emotional Statement aligns you with an emotional perspective. It’s a solid foundation on which to build the possibilities. Continue reading