* Warm-ups: * Whoosh-bang-pow with improvised moves. * This one had "vroom" instead of "whoosh". * Which led to all sorts of driving variations. * "Ramp!" * "Double-ramp!" * Scene-painting teams. * Split the class into two teams. * Get a one-word suggestion. * Team 1 uses that as inspiration to do some scene painting. * At some point, team 2 uses one of the team-1 offers as inspiration to start a secondround of scene painting. * And so on, back and forth. * You can transition to the new scenes in various ways: * "This clock reminds me of this giant bell tower." * "We match-cut from the fireplace to a raging inferno." * "A hundred years later, the cottage lies in ruins." * For this scene painting: * Go quickly. * Don't bother embodying objects. * Just establish your object, then leave. * 2-person Frustration Scenes * Split the class into two lines. * Do a series of two-person scenes. * Person 1 imitates someone in their life who really annoys them. * Person 2 responds realistically to that. * You have many options for person-2 behavior: * Silently suffer. * Call out person 1's awful behavior. * Threaten to leave. * This forces person 1 to try a new strategy. * Get pushed to your breaking point, then explode. * As person 1, when person 2 asks you to stop doing your annoying behavior... * ... you can agree to stop doing it. Then, keep doing it. * Press Conference: * This is the game where someone is giving a press conference and the reporters get insistently stuck on some misinterpretation of the announcement. * Other situations are possible: * Inspiring football-coach speech. * Museum-exhibit tour. * Sermon. * This is another game where you want to dig into the 1st offer. * ... as opposed to dropping it and picking up something new. * Just keep developing that first screw-up. * Analogous to developing the current offer in the Harold. * The conference-giver has the job of getting more and more frustrated. * This is another situation where you can "say 'yes' but do 'no'". * That is, claim you understand the presenter's explanation... * ... but persist in your misunderstanding. * N.B.: you can *do* a press-conference game *in a Harold!* * Group scenes: * Why are group scenes difficult? * It's hard to check in with everyone. * It's easy for everyone to wander off on their own track. * People are too enthusiastic. * Everyone wants to quickly contribute offers. * And you get 'offer soup'. * Everyone wants to talk all the time. * And people start talking over each other. * Note that the press-conference game ameliorates these problems. * This is because, in press conference, there are only two points of view. * This, even though there are more than two people. * This is always an option for group scenes. * Especially for clearly *starting* a group scene. * An exercise: do a three-person scene with only two points of view. * Note that the "same POV" pair needn't be twins. * They could have different physicalities. * They could have different roles (e.g. "tough guy & lackey"). * Once you have the hang of 3, try working with larger groups. * Harolds * Generally, you want to get *away* from the opening theme. * You want to get some distance from it. * This makes it so that the story "snaps" -- tension is released -- when you finally get *back* to the material from the opening. * You also don't want to burn through all the possible theme-related material in, like, ten minutes. * Me: it seems like having (say) your 1st-beat scene emerge from the opening can make this harder to do. * You want to take the opening material and make it broader, deeper, more thematic, less specific/literal. * General notes: * Spectacle: * Every show is really two shows: * The story that you're presenting. * The spectacle of improvisors trying to do a show. * A similar thing: * You don't watch Bob Ross to learn how to paint. * You watch Bob Ross to watch him paint. * Improv exists on a spectrum: * On one end, you eschew spectacle completely. * To the point that you don't even care if the audience can see or hear you. * On the other, it's all spectacle. * To the point that there's no story. * To some extent, satisfying genre expectations = spectacle. * Big mainstage shows often have more sepctacle. * Highlighting the difficulty of a game is a form of spectacle. * Ideally, the ending recaps as much material as possible. * It's much easier to hit a strong ending if you had a strong, memorable opening. * Tagouts and walk-ons. * These tend to increase the pace of their scenes. * For this reason, we want to hold off on them 'til later in the show. * (... which is when we *want* the pace to increase.) * They give us a whole lot of information about some very narrow aspect of the scene. * ... often to the detriment of knowing the basic facts about the scene in general. * If your choice kicks off a tag-out run, that means your cast *liked* that choice. * If you want to do a quick walk-on to support the scene *without* kicking off a run of tag-outs... * ... keep your energy slow and contained. * ... don't draw focus; stay upstage if you can. * ... make your entry un-glorious, un-fun, un-attractive, and perfunctory. * Just do what you need to do for the scene, and get out. * Your character can always "lose the scene" (i.e., let the *other* character get what s/he wants) without losing his or her character.
Mood: contemplative · Music: none