this is the last of the second city musical improv posts. in a week or so I’ll start up at iO, so i got a week of no improv posts.
|A bucket of umbrellas at the Getty
she’s hot I’d fuck him/her a cool rhyming warm up song for those who love the risque: chant 3 x “he’s hot I’d fuck him” then “I’d fuck him all night”. Helps to clap to keep the rhythm too. We alternated him / her, just for balance, right?
then the first person chants a 1 liner, and the second person rhymes with them.
I’m crushing a bug, a rhyming and slightly physical warm up
first person does an action and describes it (i’m crushing a bug, i’m crushing a bug while twisting toe on the ground). group then repeats the 2 lines. next person can either rhyme with it and do a new action, or follow the same action and start a new action with a new rhyme. after you’ve done round the circle, you go backwards round the circle doing the 2 lines for each person with the action.
musical theatre what are you doing – where all the actions and emotions are exaggerated
hey fred schneider what are you doing
i am the owner of a candy store first person sets up “i am the owner of an x” (where x is anything, a factory, a store, etc, but everyone will have to rhyme with the last word, so dont’ make it an orange).
each person then says a line which rhymes with x, till it gets back to the first person who says “and that’s why I’m the owner of an X”.
notes on forms
commando – one suggestion per scene. jeff got us to connect them to the previous scene to get the ask for (in the last scene you saw a nasty woman, what’s the name of a nasty woman you know?). the person taking the ask for does not initiate the scene.
pad set – do new scenes from the pad of pre-taken ask fors (may take 2 or 3 eg. Denmark, tailor, sad).
commontage – like a command but you spin off from the scene without a new ask for
a deconstruction-like musical – root scenes have to have a song, usually just 2 people, shorter scenes may or may not have songs. use focus edits or sweeps
swinging/revolving door similar to tag, but quicker and ensures return to the original scene if you have just a one-liner
when doing object work / miming objects, make sure there is a space in your hand for the object!
be aware of saying “you always do this”, it minimises / kills the emotional impact. either it’s the day you’re not going to take it anyore, or it’s the first time (which makes it more important).
|succulents, the Getty Center, LA|
be careful of character choices that make you look down (not available to the audience). find a way to be meek and look out.
teaching scenes are hard because the teacher cannot be affected by the pupil.
types of musical opening
environmental opening: eg oklahoma, beauty and the beast, south park; easiest to do, just sing about the town, no need to establish characters, just tell us where we are and what you love/hate / emote about where we are
attend the tale/prologue e.g. sweeney todd, bat boy; narrator, direct address, describe a character (who is on stage); tonal setting thing, not pimptastic
meta-theatrical: e.g. the muppet show, all of title of show, comedy tonight from funny thing happened on the way to the forum, another op’nin another show; it’s a song about the show, about the actors, about getting ready to put on the show – meta to the plot. the key to meta is having a point of view (i love or hate the show, getting ready for the show)
harold-esque / thematic an organic opening with music; musically and tonally exploring the theme – e.g. the age of aquarius? (organic opening as a kinesthetic equivalent of a list song?)
i wish number – e.g. belle’s song in beauty and the beast (called i wish); what i want from into the woods; easier in an improvised show to separate the opening and the i wish number. i wish number is a solo, except maybe for the bridge. if you have multiple wishes then you end up with more of a montage-musical
|the 405 freeway from
the Getty Center LA