Philly has a pretty active improv community, it turns out, and the Philly Improv Theater offers a lot of classes in improv, sketch comedy, and the like. After taking a free intro workshop last month, a friend and I signed up to take the eight-week Improv 101.
Why am I doing this? I’m pretty funny with the snappy comeback, and I want to see if that quick-wittedness can appear onstage. I also enjoy doing something completely different from my day job (writer/editor), which requires anal attention to semicolons and word nuance. The idea of getting out of my head and being present in the moment definitely appeals. I tap-danced for many years, and got a great deal of pleasure in doing something that, for success, required turning off my brain. This is obviously more mental than that, but overthinking is death in improv.
The first two-hour class was last night. We did an hour or so of ice-breaking, get to know you exercises and games, and then spent the rest of the time doing three-line scenes: one person creates a scenario by saying one line, the other person reacts, and the first person caps it off. Ack! As many misses as hits for all of us (15 in the class), though I did bring down the house with “That is definitely a white person’s problem.” You had to be there.
So – ask me anything.