Improv Is Easy!

(Then why is it so hard?)

13 notes

nicclee:

This is probably the best improv photograph ever taken of me. This is what improv is all about and what it should be every time we get up on stage. 
At a certain point, we all get good enough to do a good scene. We know what makes a scene work and the beats to hit and how to sneak a funny line in from time to time. But the real magic is in taking bigger leaps and bigger risks and allowing for surprise - both for yourself and for your teammates. Look at each of our faces on the backline - everyone is reacting to what was just said, some bigger than others. But we were all having fun in that moment. And it was because Dede reacted in a fun, surprising way and Justin (so good of him not to break in that moment) accepted and reacted and built off of it.
Make your teammates laugh. Do what you think is funny. Go for big, don’t go for cheap or safe. Don’t question your choices, but don’t limit yourself either.
(Small plug: This is my level 5 show - we’re at the Magnet Studio for 3 more nights [including tonight] at 8pm.)

nicclee:

This is probably the best improv photograph ever taken of me. This is what improv is all about and what it should be every time we get up on stage. 

At a certain point, we all get good enough to do a good scene. We know what makes a scene work and the beats to hit and how to sneak a funny line in from time to time. But the real magic is in taking bigger leaps and bigger risks and allowing for surprise - both for yourself and for your teammates. Look at each of our faces on the backline - everyone is reacting to what was just said, some bigger than others. But we were all having fun in that moment. And it was because Dede reacted in a fun, surprising way and Justin (so good of him not to break in that moment) accepted and reacted and built off of it.

Make your teammates laugh. Do what you think is funny. Go for big, don’t go for cheap or safe. Don’t question your choices, but don’t limit yourself either.

(Small plug: This is my level 5 show - we’re at the Magnet Studio for 3 more nights [including tonight] at 8pm.)

88 notes

At the time, Jacobson and Glazer were already working on a Broad City TV pilot; the plan was to wrap up the series, then head to L.A. to pitch it. But the finale was so well received that they were inspired to hit Poehler up with an audacious request: Would you want to, ah, executive produce our project? “Just being like, ‘We might as well fucking ask,’” Glazer recalls. “I don’t know what the fuck we thought she’d say.” And she said — yes! “So it went really well with Amy. We were all the same height, which helped.”

Bright Lights, ‘Broad City’

"We might as well fucking ask." YES.

(via datebynumbers)

BOOM. 

(via daisyrosario)

MIGHT AS WELL FUCKING ASK!

(via uptightcitizen)

(via uptightcitizen)

111 notes

You look up to your heroes and you shouldn’t be intimidated by them; you should be inspired by them. Don’t look up at the poster on your wall and think, ‘Fuck, I can never do that.’ Look at the poster on your wall and think, ‘Fuck, I’m going to do that!’
Dave Grohl at last night’s Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony where he perfectly describes the role Nirvana played in my adolescence. Thank you Nirvana. Thank you forever.  (via harryandthepotters)

Filed under Nirvana quote poster Harry and the Potters Harry Potter

638 notes

[Improv] makes you work with people better, just in general. And I don’t mean like work like at a job—just interact with people better. I keep going back to the same word “listening,” but it really is just that.
Matt Besser (via ucbcomedy)

(via wilwheaton)

6 notes

pimplomat asked: Which improv format do you feel is the hardest to perform successfully and why? Thank you.

Ooh, good question!

Without practice they’re all pretty difficult, but I’d say even with practice the trickiest is probably any sort of Narrative (like the Movie form).

Why? Narrative lends itself to plot, which can lend itself to writing on stage, which can be antithetical to improv.

You want to tell a compelling story that makes sense, but you still have to build it up moment by moment. Also, it can get bogged down by the plot, which isn’t fun for anyone, audience or improviser.

It’s tricky! But it can be done.

As for a non-Narrative form, I’d say the Evente, for similar reasons.

You want to return to the ending (which was the beginning of the show), and you want to return in a way that’s not plotty or connect-the-dots. There needs to be a surprise in there somewhere, either in the how or the why or whatever.

Also, it needs to make sense, not come out of nowhere, and you actually have to remember that first scene.

It’s a fun challenge, though!

I’m sure people have other opinions — if so, please share ‘em!

4 notes

The Eventé - Marcus Bishop-Wright

The Evente is one of my favorite improv forms, and this’ll be a great class.

Sign up, NYC improvisers!

Fridays 7-10 p.m.

April 4 - May 16

Filed under improv evente class

60,602 notes

khealywu:

sexhaver:

hospitalvespers:

if i ever fail to reblog this please assume im dead and notify the proper authorities

Great improv lesson here—if you get so excited about the funny thing that you just do it again and again, it stops being funny.

Satan Fish voice wouldn’t be funny without the regular doo-wa-diddies!

3,063 notes

Anonymous asked: Have you ever found it frustrating having to do something you don't want to (as in, doesn't tickle your fancy) but it helps pay the bills?

johnleedraws:

image

So, let me tell you a quick story:

My grandpa on my dad’s side came over from China when he was pretty young— grew up in Chicago. He was in high school when World War 2 broke out; he joined up, and was put in the 407th Air Service Squadron. It was part of the famed Flying Tigers fighter group, and one of the first all Chinese-American units in the military. He fixed planes. He also shot at them when they strafed the airfield. With a pistol.

He was there when the Japanese officially signed the surrender, and was honorably discharged soon after. The very first thing that he bought with his stashed up pay was a sterling silver bracelet with his serial number on it.

I keep it within sight of my desk at all times.

After the war, he went back to Chicago, but his father was already housing too many Chinese immigrant workers (up to this point, most Chinese immigrants were single men because of strict immigration laws and quotas), so he had to move to Detroit to live with an uncle and finish high school.

One of his high school teachers noted his artistic abilities, and recommended that he use his GI Bill to go to art school. Of course, his dad wouldn’t have it. So, he worked in laundromats, owned his own grocery, and later worked as an insurance salesman instead.

70 years later, I’m the graduate of an art school, and I’m taking a break from drawing to write this out.

I guess my point is this: the time that you use to pursue art has to come from somewhere. At some point, a sacrifice was made by you, or others, to allow you to have that time. Illustrators try to make a living in that intersection of art and commerce in an effort to lessen that sacrifice. There are some that are doing quite well at that. There are many, many more that are not.

Even those artists who we view as extremely successful have to sacrifice time. It just comes from other places: relationships, health, or family, etc. The real struggle then, is to find that balance on how you are spending your time.

If you know that a life spent making art is your ultimate goal, then doing things you don’t like aren’t really frustrations. They are necessities that must be done to give yourself time.

I think this is why I cringe every time I hear someone say that self-righteous creed of the “creative class”: “Do what you love, and you’ll never work a day in your life.” That statement discounts all the hard work and sacrifices that you or others have made to be in that situation—what on Earth would entitle us to only work jobs that we love?

I don’t do this because I love it. I do it because I must.

It’s in my bones.

Filed under John Lee