Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Where to Begin? The Beginning, of Course!!!

Most people tend to begin at the beginning. For it's a very good place to start. Yes I just paraphrased Sound of Music. It was completely spur of the moment and random, and I had no intention of having it sound like "Do Re Mi" but it did. That, my dear childrens, is called Improvisation.
Improvisation, or improv for short, is one of the most basic, and most frequently used forms of performance. 
Why, it's used everyday!!!
How is that possible?!?!?!
What the hell is this person talking about?!?!
I DON'T KNOW!!!!!!! DX
Seriously, folks. Improv is used all the time. It's pretty much how we communicate on a daily basis.
Conversations you hold over the phone, arguements with co-workers, even webchats are improvised.
Nothing is truly predictable when it comes to improv.
Now, for the HISTORY!!!! *cue historical period music!!!*

Improv is almost as old as time, though people didn't really call it improv. Most contemporary types of improvs are performed with a variation of the Commedia Dell'Arte.
This form was usually given a "scenario" like... 'a boy and a girl meet at the fair'. Very simple, right?
Then a troupe of actors would perform said scenario, adding plot, characters, and costumes to make it much more interesting.
After awhile, this form of improv died., dead, kicked the bucket, if you will...
But a new form re-emerged, thanks to two people: Keith Johnstone and Viola Spolin. (YAY)
Senor Keith Johnstone and Lady Viola Spolin, in recent history, made improv more like a game, so it was less like a show and more like spur-of-the-moment entertainment!!!

How was THIS for a quick history lesson, huh?!?! hahaha!!!
Improv is also used on stage if someone makes a mistake.
Attached to this will be a link to a video of a show I was in.
I completely and UTTERLY forgot one section of my lines, but I couldn't stop the show and think, I had to IMPROVISE!!!!!!!!! Hopefully this is a good expample and you will be entertained by the song that ensues my dialogue.
Another video will be attached with some of my very good friends performing a "Perspective Story," which is an Improv game that is used to tell the same story but with different characters. Please enjoy and feel free to tell me anything you wish to know about the wonderful, wacky, whimsical, wordy world of THEATRE!!!

Durdles' Revelation / Puffer's Confession from Broadway Training Center on Vimeo.

Perspective Stories (Advanced Acting / Improv) from Broadway Training Center on Vimeo.

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