Improv Is Easy!

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59 notes

Improv Coaching Etiquette

khealywu:

I’ve been thinking about making one of these for awhile. This first section is how I think indie teams and practice groups should interact with their coach.

  • 24 hour notice for making any changes / cancellations. If you’re cancelling day of, you and your team owe your coach their standard fee.
  • 2 hour minimum for 3+ people. I’ve done too many 1 hour coaching sessions lately, and I’m not sure where it started or why it’s suddenly accepted, but it shouldn’t be. An hour is not enough time.
  • Be on time. You’re paying for the time, get your money’s worth!
  • Do you have a coach you work with regularly? Email them once, 3-4 days before your regular rehearsing time to confirm. Confirm all the details, even if nothing’s changed. Just a good habit.
  • If the location has changed, include a street address so they can get directions straight from the email.
  • Don’t text to request a coach, unless it’s a last minute fill in.
  • Set the room up as soon as you can get in there. You are spending the money, chat while you set up the room. 4 chairs on the backline, mirrors covered and a chair for the coach. Put your stuff on the other side of the room from the backline so you don’t accidentally step on anybody’s stuff.

Etiquette for Coaches

  • Respond to emails promptly.
  • Provide your phone number so the group can get in touch with you.
  • Get there early, or at the very least on time. Do not be late. It’s the worst! This is your job, treat it like one!
  • Help set up the room, but don’t do it for them.
  • If you have time, stay behind to give feedback to anyone who wants it. I know you’re not technically getting paid for this time, but I think it’s important.
  • Bring a dedicated coaching notebook and two pens.
  • Put sessions in your calendar RIGHT AWAY.
  • If (heaven forbid) you miss a session without giving notice, you owe the group / team a free session.
  • If your schedule changes and you can’t coach when you had confirmed, offer to get a replacement for them.

If you’ve been coaching a performing team for awhile, and your schedule permits, go to some of their shows, and be ready to give them notes on their set. Audiences, and the adrenaline of live performances change the dynamic of a team, and having the consistency of getting notes from their coach is hugely valuable for a team.

So that’s what I think! What points of improv coaching etiquette have I missed?

Filed under improv comedy coaching teaching etiquette

4 notes

amyamyamyaimee asked:

Is it reasonable for me to know that I’d like to be an improv teacher even though I’m not even finished taking classses at UCB? I’m not saying I have any thoughts of attempting to teach right now, but someday I’d like to pass on my enthusiasm for improv and maybe even watch people discover a passion for it the way I did. Thoughts? Tips?

Yes, it’s very reasonable. Some people have a passion for teaching, so I say g’04 it!
A few thoughts and tips:
When you feel like you know enough to help other teams improve, that’s when it’s time to give coaching a try.
Do it for free once or twice, maybe for some group you know. See how that feels. 
In the meantime, read up on teaching theory. Learn HOW to teach. Teaching is a skill, and you have to learn it - either in school or on your own.
I’m serious about that. There’s this weird belief that if you’re good at improv, you’re automatically good at teaching, and that isn’t the case. 
There’s a big ??? over the part where you start teaching for a theatre. Who knows how that happens, really. It’s individual for everyone, and it doesn’t happen for most, but if you earn a reputation as a competent and helpful coach, that can only be good.
Also, you don’t need a theatre’s permission to teach. All coaches are teachers, after all, and you can always teach on your own.
What you wrote is important: you want to help people discover their passion. Remember that.
Ask improv-is-easy a question!
Is it reasonable for me to know that I’d like to be an improv teacher even though I’m not even finished taking classses at UCB? I’m not saying I have any thoughts of attempting to teach right now, but someday I’d like to pass on my enthusiasm for improv and maybe even watch people discover a passion for it the way I did. Thoughts? Tips?

Yes, it’s very reasonable. Some people have a passion for teaching, so I say g’04 it!

A few thoughts and tips:

  • When you feel like you know enough to help other teams improve, that’s when it’s time to give coaching a try.
  • Do it for free once or twice, maybe for some group you know. See how that feels. 
  • In the meantime, read up on teaching theory. Learn HOW to teach. Teaching is a skill, and you have to learn it - either in school or on your own.
  • I’m serious about that. There’s this weird belief that if you’re good at improv, you’re automatically good at teaching, and that isn’t the case. 
  • There’s a big ??? over the part where you start teaching for a theatre. Who knows how that happens, really. It’s individual for everyone, and it doesn’t happen for most, but if you earn a reputation as a competent and helpful coach, that can only be good.
  • Also, you don’t need a theatre’s permission to teach. All coaches are teachers, after all, and you can always teach on your own.
  • What you wrote is important: you want to help people discover their passion. Remember that.

Ask improv-is-easy a question!

Filed under improv teaching

2 notes

Anonymous asked:

Will you teach The Movie?

Sure! That’s what I’m here for. I’ve taught a lot of groups the Movie form over the years, and it remains one of my favorite things to do.
If you’re serious, here’s how we can go about this (and this isn’t just for the person who sent in this question - it’s for anyone who’s interested):
Contact me through tumblr or through gmail (I’m kirk.damato).
Let me know your improv experience and availability.
If there are seven people with compatible availability, we’ll do it up.
Yes, seven! That’s a good number for learning the Movie. And that ensures you spend all your time in class improvising, not watching.
We’ll discuss length and payment and the like privately.
This also goes for groups! If you’re a group that wants to learn the Movie, let me know your schedule and we’ll figure something out. But I’d ask for a four-week commitment to learning the Movie, since there’s a lot of components to it.
I think that’s it. G’04 it!

Will you teach The Movie?

Sure! That’s what I’m here for. I’ve taught a lot of groups the Movie form over the years, and it remains one of my favorite things to do.

If you’re serious, here’s how we can go about this (and this isn’t just for the person who sent in this question - it’s for anyone who’s interested):

  • Contact me through tumblr or through gmail (I’m kirk.damato).
  • Let me know your improv experience and availability.
  • If there are seven people with compatible availability, we’ll do it up.
  • Yes, seven! That’s a good number for learning the Movie. And that ensures you spend all your time in class improvising, not watching.
  • We’ll discuss length and payment and the like privately.
  • This also goes for groups! If you’re a group that wants to learn the Movie, let me know your schedule and we’ll figure something out. But I’d ask for a four-week commitment to learning the Movie, since there’s a lot of components to it.

I think that’s it. G’04 it!

Filed under Improv Movie Classes Teaching