THIS BLOG IS MOVING

October 5, 2007

Wow, I haven’t been able to log onto wordpress for about a week.

And all I’ve been wanting to tell you is that we’re moving.

New location!
http://storyrobot.com/improv/

I’ve still got some fne tuning to do, but there’s a new comic over there to tempt you.

Intro to Improv: the build up pt2

September 20, 2007

This is take two on this section. A few minor changes and a new page at the bottom.  As always, click for a bigger picture.

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Reclaiming Your Charm

September 10, 2007

 I got an e-mail from David Wahl (Creative Creativity) a while ago, which mentioned this activity from The Art of Comedy.

 Reclaiming Your Charm

This exercise helps you discover your true, inner personal charm. One thing that’s important in acting is likeability. Tapping into one’s authenticity is vital in your comedy acting. This charm exercise allows people to embrace the power of agreement, that is, to agree with the other person and to see the magic in the other person.

Sometimes, in comedy, people tend to leave out their unique personality and likeability. They sometimes forget how to be charming and can be rather robotic in their acting. Although comedy certainly uses exaggeration, it has to be based on a layer of truth. The actor has to be real and likeable. As simple as this exercise may seem, it can be challenging, because sometimes people want to lock their personalities away.

People Needed: 2 or more

Scene: Two actors onstage

Directions: One actor is onstage when the other actor enters. The goal of the scene is for the two actors to be as charming as they can. They have a coversation with each other and aren’t concerned about being funny. They focus on tapping their own personal charm and talk with each other in great depth. They compliment each other, express kindness toward one another and notice everything about the other person in a most flattering way.

I haven’t had a chance to try this one yet, but I am intrigued.  As far as I can tell it is trying to teach charisma.  Teaching charisma?  Can it be done?  Isn’t it one of those things that you either have or you don’t?

Does anyone have any hot ideas for teaching charisma?

I’d love to run a workshop on charisma.  Some status work, some body language, the beep beep game*, the presentation minus trick game*…

*as found in impro for storytellers.

please

September 6, 2007

If you spot any mistakes, or see any ways I can improve these comics, please tell me (for example the missing word in the latest comic).

When I finish I plan to go back through and redo them all, so any advice would be much appreciated.

Intro to Improv: the build up

September 6, 2007

This one turned into a bit of an epic, more coming next week.

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Read the rest of this entry »

Improv blog: Improv is good for you

September 5, 2007

Another day another improv blog (there’re more than I thought!)

This blog is almost entirely photos of improv shows.

Improv is good for you

My favourite part is the occasional video. As someone who often feels isolated from the larger world of improv, it’s always nice to see what other people are doing.

Here’s one now

Project Improviser

September 1, 2007

I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned this before.

Project Improviser

An online reality show about a group of improvisers.

I was totally hooked on this when it ran last year, and I just got hooked on it again as I was looking up the link.

Guru

August 27, 2007

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I’ve been rereading some of my Improv books.

This weekend it was GURU: MY DAYS WITH DEL CLOSE by Jeff Griggs.

Some thoughts,

1. Jeff Griggs is the kind of improviser I want to be when I grow up.

2. The way Del’s life intertwines with popular culture at large falls somewhere between Forrest Gump and the Da Vinci Code.

3. While sometimes I worry that I’m a little harsh on students, I’m always reassured by the fact that I’ve never told a student to sew her vagina shut.

4. Quote: “Laughter is a response to a gestault formation where two previously incompatible or dissimilar ideas suddenly form into a new piece of understanding. The energy release during that reaction comes out in laughter.” (p41)

Excerpts here and here.

Intro to Improv: Yesand

August 22, 2007

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I lost all my notes in the big move.  But I’m back in business now.

‘make an object, say a line’

August 19, 2007

Last week I had the pleasure of tutoring some High School Theatre Sports teams.

I never know quite what I’m going to teach but I always prepare a list of exercises that I think might be useful that I can glance at when I’m stuck.

My stand out performer this week was definitely ‘make an object, say a line‘.

Make an object, Say a line

How it works: Standard open scene, but players can’t speak unless they have created an object through mime (one object earns you one line).

What it does: mime skills, less talking, less worrying about story, less talking about what you are doing*.

Origin: unknown.

*Players will hopefully work out that if they mime a cup and say ‘I just got a cup’ then they have put themselves back to square one (needing to mime a new object).


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