Improv Tip of the Month: Leap and the Net Will Appear

Barry Edwards
Category : Improvisation July 11, 2012

This month’s improv tip is from Barry Edwards, Improv Contributor

There is a saying by American essayist John Burroughs: ”Leap and the net will appear”. I first heard this quote from a good friend when I was considering leaving a good job to change careers. Ever since then, I’ve been living my life with that in mind. Whether it’s changing careers or moving to a new city, whenever I’ve leapt that proverbial net has always appeared.

Improv Tip of the Month: “Five Things”

Barry Edwards
Category : Improvisation May 29, 2012

This month’s improv tip is from Barry Edwards, Improv Contributor.

Got another team meeting coming up? Let the games begin.Plato’s quote still holds true: “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” Facilitated play makes it possible for your team to learn more about each other.  Plus team cohesiveness is a natural outcome from a shared fun experience.

Resilient on Stage, Resilient at Work

Shawn Westfall
Category : Improvisation April 20, 2012

Written by Shawn Westfall, The Get Real Project’s Improv Guru

Why should organizational leaders care about why improv scenes succeed or fail? Because what plays out on an improv stage is a lot like what happens in the organizational arena. Read on to discover exactly what it takes to demonstrate resiliency in either setting.

Improv Tip of the Month: Zip-Zap-Zop

Barry Edwards
Category : Improvisation March 16, 2012

This month’s improv tip is from Barry Edwards, Improv Contributor

Schedule a meeting in your conference room then let the games begin!Plato once said, “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” While he probably wasn’t referring to creating a more engaged and productive work team, it still applies. Facilitated play makes it possible for your team to learn more about each other. Plus a shared fun experience creates team cohesiveness.

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and Improv: an Historical Combination

Cary Paul
Category : Improvisation February 22, 2012

This post was written by Cary Paulour Chief Improv Officer (CIO)

On that hot, Washington DC day of August 28, 1963, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr was delivering a well-prepared speech. The American clergyman, activist, and prominent leader in the African-American Civil Rights Movement was—and still is—considered one of America’s great orators. And with good reasons: his legacy is marked by a world-changing mission, intelligent writing, and the distinctive cadence with which he enthralled listeners.

Improv Tip of the Month: They Want Something

Shawn Westfall
Category : Improvisation February 21, 2012

This month’s improv tip is from Shawn Westfall, BossaNova’s Improv Guru:

The characters sitting at the center of our favorite sitcoms, shows, movies, plays, novels, short stories and improv scenes all have one thing in common: they want something.In most cases, they want something desperately. Indeed, that often is what informs the plots of the stories or scenes they are in. Hamlet wants revenge. Will he get it? Willy Loman in Death of a Salesman wants the respect he feels he so clearly deserves, something he feels he’s devoted his life to. Does he get it, in the end? That old “pretentious” actor cliché– the one that has him or her stopping a scene to ask “what’s my motivation?”—is actually useful information for the actor to know, another way of trying to discover what his or her character wants. And anyone who’s ever been part of a production knows that what a character wants in the play isn’t always clear, that what he or she says she wants may have little to do with what he or she actually wants.

Improv tip of the month: name, logo, tag line, ad campaign!

Andrea Howe
Category : Improvisation December 21, 2011
Everyone wants a standing ovation. Try this with your team–it’s a great way to (re)define who you are as we move into the new year.

Improv Tip of the Month: Listening!

Barry Edwards
Category : Improvisation November 18, 2011

This month’s improv tip is from Barry Edwards, Improv Contributor and Consultant:

One of the main tenants of performing improv comedy is listening. What? LISTENING! If you’re not listening to your improv partner, the scene will most likely go downhill and the audience will know. The same thing happens at work. If you’re not listening to your manager or client, the conversation will most likely go downhill and they will know.

Improv tip of the month: what does your favorite sitcom, sketch, or movie character have in common?

Shawn Westfall
Category : Improvisation October 14, 2011

This month’s improv tip is from Shawn Westfall, BossaNova’s Improv Guru:

Think about your favorite sitcom, sketch, or movie characters. What do they have in common? A comic perspective: a committed way of seeing the world that’s uniquely theirs. Norm on “Cheers” doesn’t just like beer: he views the world through the bottom of a beer glass. Ron Burgandy from “Anchorman” isn’t just an anchorman; rather, he wears his local-TV anchorman status as a kind of armor to get him through his day.

Improv Tip of the Month: Don’t Get in Your Own Way

Cary Paul
Category : Improvisation September 21, 2011

This month’s improv tip is from Cary Paul, Chief Improv Officer:

Don’t get in your own way. We are always encouraging our improv participants to be in the moment and get off script. Effective improv is reliant on participants not over-thinking their next action or reaction. Rather, we focus on listening, and building off our team mates.

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