Improvisational Theater

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Words of wisdom...

"What if we lived our impro ethics?
What if we greeted everyone on the street as a potential scene partner. We embrace their entrance into our scene of life. We see them and hear them with the skill of focusing in the moment. We honour their contribution.

What if we embraced challenges as offers? Doubts as moments to advance? Hesitation as wimping, then answer the call to leap.

What if we looked at the homeless, the poor, the lonely, the elderly as our scene partners and our role is to make them look good or inspire them. What would you do? If you know what you would do, then what is stopping you from doing it?

What is we “yes anded” someone wanting to cut into traffic ahead of you?

Just think of how many improvisers there are in the world. What if we all made a plan to hit the world with the energy, joy, play and acceptance that we use in our work. One day we start. An international revolution of making each other look good.


Patti Stiles

Sunday, January 6, 2013

20 minutes

I am about to experience twenty minutes for the FIRST time. 
I have indeed lived through twenty minutes numerous times.
But this will be the first time I approach twenty minutes with my full attention. 
The timer is set.  I begin to imagine the stage, my body in the space, the audience, warm, waiting, my shaky introduction, my nervous start, the blank, unpainted, everything…

Five minutes in I feel capable.  The time will race by, one character, one story after another.  So far, in my mind, I’ve talked to the audience, I’ve dug into a sound and a motion and created a first character, a first story perhaps and now I move into the next, patiently, slowly transforming, my audience is with me, I am clam, I am present, my body, my breath, in motion, in motion, in motion, I find something new, a treasure, its not a character as I imagined it would be but rather a place, a cave, an expedition, an experience, there are two characters here, myself and… a troll!  Wow! 

The story develops, the troll is protective but lonely, I am protective but curious.

A shift.  I feel a need to seek something else out. Another transformation begins.  Ah, it’s an old friend, Delilah, a southern woman in her fifties, stubborn, but ready to try cooking something new, a contemporary dish using pine nuts and anchovy paste.  Oh man she is making a mess and something catches fire.  She sits down defeated. A transformation begins….

We are half way through, a monologue arrives, a story about an alien cult…
A swing away edit, a freeze and a new character, a tough girl, a Boston girl, an attitude, but what is she going to say?  Ah she gave her baby away.  As she talks about it she weakens, weakens, weakens, sinks down crying….. A shift…

A date, two chairs, a nervous woman, a snooty woman?  This is a funny bit.  Lots of complimenting myself,  Lots of self commentary, and jokes, the audience needs this now and they love it.  One woman wont sit down, but keeps moving toward sitting.  The other sits but is also fidgety, oh don‘t get them switched up.  They kiss.  Now that is funny. A shift…

A child telling us about the world.  Shift.

A woman talking to a ghost.  A shift.

A strange silence, a pause, oh Domeka you can do it, dig deep, jump, jump, jump…. Five minutes left…..

A Shakespeare, a soliloquy, oh yes, you’ve arrived.

A story about mom in Romeo and Juliet.

A woman at a bus stop, meets a man, and a homeless person keeps interrupting them with questions and wild stories.  This last two minutes is killing me… How do I end this thing…

Breathing, standing, walking into a new character, getting undressed and going to bed.

And the timer rings!!!