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About Improv Blog and Resources

Beginners Improv Course Online

Updated: Dec 7, 2020

A Foundation in the FUNdamentals of Improv at School of Improv's online classes from Newcastle UK.

At Beginners, you will have huge fun learning the skills and principles of improvised comedy, and gain a solid foundation in the all-important basics of improv and performing without a script, which all come in useful for 'the stage we call life' as well.

You will be given the improvisers' tools, and trained in techniques, that help you:

  • communicate and collaborate more easily,

  • be less worried about what you do or say, so you can be more spontaneous,

  • become more open, confident, and creatively expressive,

  • laugh like you just don't care!

You don't need any experience in improv, comedy, or acting, to attend Beginners Classes. Our online workshops are held on Zoom, and you will be guided through all the controls and technical side of things, so you don't need any experience there either.

Go here for dates, times, and prices and to Book Beginners Online Improv Course.

Play the Improv Game

'Improv' is a theatrical art form that can be absolutely hilarious, but it’s not about ‘trying’ to be funny. Like all good comedy, improv can be dramatic and moving as well. Improv is unscripted and unplanned. It’s about creating something spontaneously, out of thin air, together, and in-the-moment. When it goes wrong, that’s part of what makes it funny. So, it’s safe to make mistakes. It's how we 'respond' to mistakes that matter - in Improv, and surely in life too. By embracing that concept, you can step outside your comfort zone more easily, and start to find creative solutions to the problem. Improv is full of fun problems to solve. Think of improv as a game to play.

The FUNdamentals of Improv

During the course of Beginners, you will play group games, practice exercises, perform short scenes, and create stories together. We will introduce you to our key, fundamentals of Improv, such as:

  • Listening

Improvisers ‘actively listen’ to understand the signals the other person is giving them. This keeps them 'present', responding to each other in 'the now', rather than ‘planning’ ahead. Ask any improviser what their most important skill is, and they're likely to say, 'listening'.

  • Spontaneity

By freeing our minds of all the clutter, and finding ways to stop 'over-thinking' and 'planning', we can start to lose ‘control’ and find pleasure in being ‘surprised’ instead.

  • Offers

Producing ideas that stimulate your fellow improvisers and move the action forward.

  • Accept and Build, also-known-as: Yes-and

Responding to what others offer you, and developing the idea step-by-step.

  • Platforms

A story needs to start somewhere. By focusing on building:

  1. the Who? the characters and their relationship,

  2. the What? the activity they are undertaking, or what they are 'doing'

  3. the Where? the environment they are in,

a strong 'context' will form, and the main 'content' and 'conflict' of the story will appear as if by magic.

  • Status

The way we speak to each other, our body language, and our overall attitude towards others reveals a lot about a person. 'Status' interactions in Improv aren't about 'class', they are about which character is more dominant or submissive.

  • Playing the Expert

How we present ourselves, so we play-out the role and subject matter with complete commitment, whether we know anything about it or not, brings about a confident and convincing performance.

  • Blocking, Choices, and Change

It’s a natural state, early on, to block ideas and stay-put. It feels safe. But by noticing the 'blocks', and knowing there are different 'choices' in reach, and acting upon them, 'change' will happen. Eureka!

The Improv Drug

There is a 'vulnerability' to Improv. After all, you don't have a script. You're making the whole thing up. This is why audiences see improvisers as confident and courageous - and perhaps a little crazy! But you're in a team, and it's your positive mindset and unified support for each other, your generosity and goodwill, that enables you to take risks, make bold choices, and be brave. And when that happens, it's a buzz you'll want to happen again and again.

So, a word of warning: Improv can be highly addictive!

1 Comment

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