Thursday, 29 May 2014

My History of Improv since I've been doing Improv

After Uni I wasn't so interested in improv, until I started watching Whose Line? again and just googled Improv courses on a whim. It was early 2011 and I was living in Holborn in central London but I didn't have much money, due respectively to me living as guardian (a bit like a live in security guard) in an office block, and busking for a living.

The search came up with Hoopla improv, drop-in course, £10 on the door, no booking necessary and less than an hours walk, saving some tube fare!

Steve Roe was teaching the class and I cannot recommend his classes enough. Very warm, friendly, welcoming, an atmosphere of trust and encouragement. The session's theme was spontaneity andI threw myself in! Although everyone else there was probably fairly new to improv I thought the standard was really high - possibly something to do with the standard I had been used to in my uni years, so I really felt the urge to try and raise my game.

I started to regularly attend Steve's drop-ins, and within a matter of weeks I felt I had learnt so much more than I had in all the years preceding the course.

I have not been taught by that many improv teachers, mainly because they tend to charge a lot more than Steve does, but when I have paid that little bit more to get another perspective, I've always felt a little short-changed. The only improv course I've been to that is on a par, in my opinion, is The Mayday's drop in with Liz Peters in Brighton which I went to the week before last. I may well go to that session again tomorrow!

I attended Steve's drop-ins for pretty much as long as he ran them. He's currently only running longer prebookable classes and I can never commit to any sort of schedule, but I now get my improv fixes elsewhere! I have just heard from Steve that he's bringing the drop-ins back in September - awesome news!

Since I attended those very first drop-ins, I've been a musician for the fantastic Music Box, been a member of the fun but short-lived experimental short form group Mini Mini Montage, and set up the Improvised Improv show in Edinburgh.

Upon returning from Edinburgh last year, I was asked to join The Sinister Tales of Doctor Synistra, and I have now been with them almost a year.

Although I'm not the most experienced of improvisers I now feel completely comfortable on stage and the most important thing is that I enjoy it. When that happens, the audience usually enjoys it, and everyone has a good time! I love the feeling of having no idea what's going to happen in a scene but still maintaining the confidence that I can cope with anything that does happen. And I think audiences really enjoy that as well. And that's just one of the reasons why improv is so awesome...

No comments:

Post a Comment