Improv is unscripted performace where the participants usually take something as a suggestion (a location, relationship or word) and then perform a scene or play a game. It's often funny, but doesn't have to be. The magic is that anyone can do it by applying the fundamental principles of listening to your scene partner and working together.
A lot of people know improv from the TV show "Whose line is it anyway?", but that's just the tip of the iceburg - there is so much more! A near infinite world of formats, styles and possibilities. The only way to find out is to come and have a go really. Come and try it - I dare you!
Improv can be for comedy performance, but it's also great for confidence building, wellbeing and simply having fun with a nice bunch of people.
OK, thats a bit much, but it definitely did help!
Chris Read on how and why he started doing improv:
I can remember watching "Whose line is it anyway?" as a whipper-snapper and thinking "I really want to do that". Spin forward 15 years and I finally got my chance. After plucking up the courage to take a beginners short-form improv course in Brighton (and it did take a while to have the nerve to go!), I never looked back. When I returned to my hometown of Norwich, I was keen to keep doing improv, which led me to start Dogface.
In addition to having a lot of fun playing silly games and meeting lovely new people, I have personally found improv to have had a positive impact on my life across the board.
It's certainly made me more confident - to speak in front of groups of people for instance, but also in everyday social life too. It's certainly helped me to relax and take myself a little less seriously. It's definitely made me realise the power of collaborating and working as a team.
If you are like I was and think you'd enjoy it, but are nervous about doing it - my advice is to take the plunge. It's often the good stuff that makes us feel nervous, and I guarentee that once you start, the nerves will diminish as you start to enjoy the expereience of being spontaneous, creative and funny.
Chris, Danny and Mark run Dogface. If you'd like to get in touch, you can email email@example.com
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