Sunday, February 15, 2004

Serious Improv (3 of 3)

... Eventually, our characters work together and break out. What's so amazing about it is how much we, as actors, worked together without having the chance to talk things out. I remember, at one point, for the good of the play, I really needed to get Shawna's character to do something. And I only had in mind one REALLY stupid way to get her to do it. And while my character was trying to get her character to do it, my non-existent powers of ESP were saying, "Please, Shawna, I know it's stupid, but you've gotta go along because it's all I've got." And Shawna somehow knew this, so she made her character fall for the stupid thing and go along. I'd done scenes and plays before, but -- with a script to rely on -- I'd never really recognized how COLLABORATIVE acting is, how much give-and-take there is with your fellow actors. I'd also never done that much thinking-on-the-fly before, trying to keep my character on track, but also paying attention to the others and the needs of the play. It was truly an eye-opening experience.

The other thing I remember is that by the time we broke through the door, class was over. The four of us had acted for over 45 minutes -- totally oblivious to the time. We were commended for pretty much improvising the first act of a play.

I wonder what would have happened if we ever tried for Act Two.

1 comment:

grodygeek said...

A fine story. I would have loved a chance to go to such a place. Stand up and improv are my favorite types of comedy.

Can I make a suggestion? Type your story out in a word processor, copy in the bottom section first as part 3, then the middle as part two, and finally the top as part 1. Reads easier.