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Every scene is inspired by the previous one. It could be the atmosphere, the emotions, the energy, the theme… whatever inspires the improviser who decides what the scene was about and how it will be used to inspire the next one.
Random is an improv sho in its purest form. It is a playground for improvisers and an open window to their imagination. Scene after scene, actors and musicians create worlds using might, music, sound or random set pieces.
Inbal Lori (Tel Aviv) and Tim Orr (San Francisco) combine to present Click. In this format, the improvisers take their inspiration from photographs provided by the audience, rather than verbal suggestions. Each scene will start with a new photograph, and the scenes are most likely unrelated. The evocative, non-literal nature of photographs allows the actors to discover their way into characters and situations through the feeling that the images inspire.
Drum Machine is Jill Bernard’s one-person sweepingly epic unscripted musical featuring multiple characters in scenes, monologues and songs accompanied by electronic drum beats or in collaboration with a musician. The show opens with a brief interview of an audience member, then Bernard creates a musical that weaves details of their life into a historical period suggested by the audience.
In search of an unknown hero…
Inspired by your suggestions, the actors propose a biography of an everyday hero. A one hour exhilarating life story punctuated by flash-backs, intriguing characters and improbable anecdotes that marked the life of our hero. Plunge into intimate secrets, hold your breath in moments of glory and tremble in times of doubt. The story writes itself before your eyes.
Come one, come all to see the Fortune Teller, a mystical being with the ability to see into your future. Come see the Fortune Teller, who will sense the presence of the chosen one in the audience and reveal untold truths. Come see the Fortune Teller bring the improbable future of the chosen one to life before your very eyes with the help of The Ghost Sheep !
LUGARES (PLACES) invites members of the audience to describe a special setting. This glimpse into an inner world might describe a house of a grandparent, an attic room lived in during college, or a car you commute in. The improvisers create exciting new stories and parallel worlds that will change the way we see the spaces around us, and connect us to our own personal places. This is improvised theatre that is crafty, challenging and adventurous.
Mixing his experiences as professional improviser and former light designer, Franck BuzZ, with Thomas Ury’s support,
imagined a show where lighting atmospheres, randomly associated to sound atmospheres, are the starting points of each new scene.
In order to provide variety, it combines all types of lighting sources, from candle to videoprojection. All the magic is in the choice of lightning energies, conceived so as to stimulate improv actors and encourage them to release their spontaneity.
Quotable Women is a celebration of women improvisors. Using quotes from notable women throughout history as inspiration, Quotable Women will take us on a playful expedition into the often untold stories of women. Power, submission, lust, love, sexuality, body image, success, politics, friends, sister, mothers, daughters, whores, virgins and lovers. Join this all female cast on a journey from concubine to feminist, from damsel in distress to patriarchal working woman.
An international cast of improvisers, actors and musicians will unite to create an fully improvised musical !
Five improvisers take turns as movie directors, casting and directing a movie in their favourite genre. The audience will decide which movies get to be continued, and at the end of the show a single movie will get the green light !
What is more difficult than improvising an emotionally truthful play? Doing it in multiple languages! What happens when the stranger enters the house of Babel? Someone who can’t communicate? Who’s only language is English. Will the tower fall?
Observer, étudier, signifier, épuiser à la fin ce qui n’est pas perçu, l’ordinaire, l’infraordinaire, ce qui se passe quand il ne se passe rien: comme un rat qui construit lui-même le labyrinthe dont il se propose de sortir.
“Tentative…” est, aussi, un hommage à George Perec et à l’OuLiPo.
Two people in one room for the whole story. Extradited to each other. No entrance, no exit. Nobody will join and nobody will leave. When space and time are limited, the improvisers have to find the issues inside and between the characters themselves… and escape from the inside. The deeper they dig, the more freedom they get !
Night School Improv has been enlightening audiences in San Francisco for over two years. By taking fun facts from the audience and performing sets based on them, Night School is dedicated to making people learn as much as they laugh.
In days of old the fate of civilisations was decided by a handful of powerful men and women. Heroic leaders, courageous believers and glory seeking rulers in a struggle to conquer. An improvised tale of survival in ancient times. 12 actors permanently onstage to improvise the situations as well as all the visual aspects, both real and symbolic, of this epic universe.
The power of body-telling. How much do you need words? How much can you tell with the body?
This a format without words created by Felipe Ortiz. It’s a collection of scenes without words inspired by a short interview of a member of the audience.
The improvisers will jump into a wordless challenge: communicating without words, opening a whole new world of magical realism where anything can happen.
The Bookends is a literature-inspired narrative longform duo made up of two bookworms, Bart Van Loon and Kelly Agathos. The audience is asked to bring a book with them, and once one is selected, a sentence from it will inspire the rest of their show. Throughout the show, Bart and Kelly both act out and take turns narrating the story, giving the audience an alternative, touching and entertaining version of their book! You will never read your book in the same way again…
Sassy Murder was formed out of a love of freedom and absurdity on stage. Heavily inspired by Boston-style freeform, filtered through Chicago long-form and European narrative, they take all the best bits and the bits they love, throw it all against the wall and see what sticks.
In a place where worlds collide, different realities hold hands and space and time had too much to drink, two parallel played solos merges into one duo. A double solo. Solodoppio.
Werewolves The Improv Show is a longform that combines improvised theatre with the popular party game The Werewolves Of Miller’s Hollow. The players introduce a smalltown village in medieval times. People are living their simple lives until a curse hits the village: werewolves start killing off innocent villagers one by one. Their only hope is for the audience to discover the wolves amongst the villagers before it is too late…
In everyday life, what do we do when we want to express ourselves but it is impossible to speak ? Decibel, using the art of mime and bodily fluency, offers the audience the opportunity to immerse themselves in situations, real ones or not, where language is not possible. Accompanied by a musicians who participates interactively in the creation of the stories, they will bring you into realistic and surprising universes.
A gloomy melodrama with a pessimistic undertone. A woman with a history meets a man with no future. The improvisers create a story in the neo-noir style, bringing on stage the dark and light sides of life.
Joe Bill is american. Felipe Ortiz is columbian. So of course they will perform a show in French, with wine, cheese and few words !
Crazy 80s. Two friends remember the time of their stage glory while acting out the story of their life. The performance is interlaced with the biggest disco hits, which are created ad hoc with the tips from the audience.
A few lines. Just a few lines can spark into a million different conversations. Start a new scene. The same lines, but a totally different scene with a unique approach. And again. And again. These words will unleash multiple chains of events and we’ll be there to explore all the possibilities and leave no stone unturned.
“Longform improvised musicals are one of the most intense, joyful and brave formats for an improviser. If you want to take your improv to the next level, this series of workshops will focus on intense listening, commitment and support as well as some technical skills useful for performing improvised musicals such as song structures and big group numbers. We will also look at handling narrative, singing songs that matter, lyrics and choreography. No previous experience of musicals required, just bring your heart and soul! “
“Improvisers who inspire, surprise and delight their partners are the most fun to play with. How do they do this magic? This workshop explores exercises and techniques to help you delight, surprise and inspire your partner. How to change them, affect them and watch them light up!”
“We live in a complex, complicated and extraordinary world. Humans are capable of the most amazing heroic and horrific actions. What one person may see as rational and necessary another sees as an act of prejudice or violence. Our values, views, morality and beliefs colour our interpretation. Improvisational theatre can provoke the audience to question their own beliefs by shining a light on stories from a different point of view. Where the unimaginable becomes understandable and the wrong may seem right.Improvisers are often afraid to engage in the stories that reflect life around us. This workshop challenges participants to play scenes based on the dark and light of humanity. Please note: this workshop uses subject material and language that may be confronting and difficult for some people.”
“Many of the genres we perform have characters that were created to reflect society of the time. Even if the author set the story in a different time, the actions or behaviours of the characters represented the social sensibility of the reader. These acceptable social rules were heavily categorised into male and female behaviour. Today’s world is different. Our social dynamics and ‘rules’ of engagement encompass more freedom then rules of the past yet our storytelling is still shackled to historical roles. For example, if we continue to categorise behaviour by gender, in reflection of today’s world, are we not perpetuating a form of sexism? Do the actions need to be linked to the gender for the story to be told? Do the stories remain genre ‘true’ regardless of ‘gender’ casting? By questioning, challenging and exploring the purpose of the character in the story and removing the gender assumptions we break open new levels of impro play and possibilities. The effects on the audience are really quite interesting.”
“Joe Bill will share with you some tools that will help you make powerful choices in any context in which you find yourself improvising. The first tools for getting yourself into a place of vitality for yourself and connectedness with your scene partners. Then you’ll get tools to forward scenes, games & stories all the way through to an ending that is compelling for both you and your audience. This workshop will also include some individual and group diagnostic and feedback, especially around issues that are constraining you or putting you into your head.”
“Saying “Yes And” without words is a pleasure. More deeply, we will work on an organic chain of action/reaction, without words. Learning to trust silence and to respect the silence of my partner. Trying not to fill the silence but to let us become full from it.”
“Appropriate for Improvisers with at least 2 years of experience up to professional level. This workshop will introduce you to your brain and how it works to serve (and also paralyze) you while you’re doing Improv Scenes. You will learn how to recognize the sensations that go along with being connected or disconnected from your scene partner or yourself (and your architect brain) so that you can be more fully present, productive and in service to each moment that you find yourself on stage improvising. You are an actor, director & playwright when you improvise long form, this workshop will help you feel the integration of ALL of those sensibilities in order to play both the truth and the comedy of moments as you improvise.”
“This workshop aims at releasing your physical creative power. Your body is much more smarter than your brains and it’s an open book worth to be read. Let’s leave our brains backstage and follow our animal instincts. Listen to our bodies and our senses. Learn to be present from the 4 elementary animals: The Monkey (Earth): Body Creativity The Tiger (Fire): Release the Power The Shark (Water): the 6th Sense The Dragon (Air) : The Magic Skills and tools: physicality,creative work-out, Lecoq technique.”
We spend too much time on Man vs. Man. What other conflicts are there? Man vs. Nature, Man vs.Society, Man vs. Himself, etc. In this workshop we will do some scene stwhat we can do besides bicker with each other.
“Through spontaneity games, impro exercises, and specific movement techniques, you will find how to discover and create imaginary objects and spaces and how to connect your imagination with your body taking advantage of your possibilities and knowing your limits. In this workshop, the participants will be trained to allow their body to surprise them, taking them to unexpected places and circumstances, how to interact with imaginary spaces and objects, (they can be your best friend but also your worst enemy), this will be an important tool to avoid actor’s blockages and a limitless source of creativity and inspiration.”
“An pure Omar workshop. Omar Argentino Galvan shares his particular and evolving work always researching dramaturgic paths and performing solutions not generally explored in improv. The poetic movement. The magic realism as an excuse and inspiration to learn and generate new shows. Ghosts, the non-living character, the use of empty space, reality planes, imaginary object 2.0 and sound painting strokes. A key workshop to discover and understand a Latin American style of improvisation as a theatrical expression.”
“Not a traditional voice class, instead, we want to look at how you as a human being can create art that reflects what you want to say to the world. Of course we can do improv scenes about anything, but a playwright is able to choose their subject. This class guides you to examine what you really would like to improvise about. “
“LightboX is an innovative format created by Franck BuzZ where lighting and video atmospheres are the starting point of each new scene. The LightboX has been played in 10 differents countries and with a lot of international famous improvisers : Patti Stiles, Joe Bill, Inbal Lori, Felipe Ortiz, Susan Messing … In this workshop, discover how light can become your partner on stage and how you can create strong and powerful pictures to release your creativity and playfulness. Inspired by the « Lightbox » format, you will play in several lighting and video atmospheres to enter in a new universe of fantasy and poetry. Unique experience ! Guaranteed fun !! (videos of LightboX shows and workshops : https://vimeo.com/album/4163122 )”
Too often improv feels like a chore, filled with right decisions and good and bad choices. In this session with Jill Bernard, participants will learn the joy and success that follows doing exactly what tickles them.
“Group Pretty: Table Manners: 6 ways to create sustainable characters: Put up or shut up: Get reamed out and picked apart in a firework of personal feedback by two masters of improvisation. This workshop is for experienced improvisers who have been performing regularly for at least a couple of years.”
Characters should be familiar and yet new. How do we do this? Lee White guides you through simple character creation and helps maintain and expand these characters for both long and short form. Strong characters that make your audience fall in love with them and come back over and over. Looking at the choices we make as improvisers and how to make better, stronger choices to develop great characters for the stories you want to tell.
“What ever you or the scene needs is present on stage right now. As improvisers our imagination is working extra hours. Is not just about what we say or who we play, it’s also about where we are, what else is around us and how can we use it. This workshop will explore the ways to imagine and create the world you’re in. It will shift your focus into a wider perspective allowing you to be more spacious, detailed and inspired. See where you are and use it for the best of the scene!”
This workshop shows you how to create your scenes moment by moment, helping you to develop the skills for storytelling and strong characters. The scene work is the basic building block of any show. Lee helps you to recognize bad habits in your improvisation and gives you the tools to get out of them, helping you break down storytelling to its simplest and driving you to make them as complex and colourful as your imagination lets you.
“Are you afraid of the void, the slow, the silent and the unexpected? We’re going to explore global listening and learn how to reveal the magic scenes hidden inside you. We´ll learn to trust silence, our bodies, the environment and our partners to build our own truthful stories And share them to the world. Let’s wait and not run, let’s read the scenes rather than try to write them. Don´t give the audience what your fear thinks they want, give them what you are. Your pure honest self in the moment. Skills and Tools: Global Listening, Slow improv, physicality.”
“We’ll work on how to go deeper and deeper with our listening skills, in order to play more emotional and more organic scenes. All the exercises of this workshop will follow the metaphor of the mirror: a tool that will help us to respect and give value to the offers of our partner. In order to discover impro, more than create it. It will be fun and emotional, intense and poetic! “
“A sculptor starts to work on a big piece of wood, and a little kid is standing next to him, watching him work. After a while, the sculptor drops his tools on the floor, and walks back a little, to look at his sculpture. The kid does the same and discovers that the sculpture is actually his own face! He looks at the artist, and says, surprised: “Hey, how did you know I was in there?”. Why not become this sculptor and surprise the audience by revealing to them what is already there, in front of them, in between us? What if the stories we were about to tell were already written within us?” – for improvisers who are already familiar with the Slow technique
“A sculptor starts to work on a big piece of wood, and a little kid is standing next to him, watching him work. After a while, the sculptor drops his tools on the floor, and walks back a little, to look at his sculpture. The kid does the same and discovers that the sculpture is actually his own face! He looks at the artist, and says, surprised: “Hey, how did you know I was in there?”. Why not become this sculptor and surprise the audience by revealing to them what is already there, in front of them, in between us? What if the stories we were about to tell were already written within us?”
“Our body knows. Every improviser has already felt this inner impulse pushing you on stage because it’s «now». And we also know this little voice in our brain telling us just after the impulse: «are you sure ? is it a good idea ?». Inspired by techniques of other disciplines including dance, american native clowning, breathing and meditation, martial arts, Franck Buzz will help you connect more deeply with your body. You will learn to recognize these inner impulses and listen to them, trusting yourself, here and now. In that way, you will shut off your « clever » brain, releasing your spontaneity to play organically with more love and honesty. Are you ready to intuitively play impro with eyes closed (literally) ?”
The horror scenario of many improvisers: ¨let’s see a solo scene¨ Actually it is not really that hard to play a scene just by yourself. Felipe Ortiz will help the participants of his workshop to bring solo-scenes to the stage by using physical work, details and being aware of your body. You will explore different ways for being able to travel inside your imagination and visualize for the audience and suddenly find yourself doing whole scenes without any pressure.
Discover the power that you get as an improviser when you play characters who actually get along with the other characters in the scene. Most improvisers have heard of playing “happy/healthy”, but in my experience less than 5% of improvisers in the world actually know how to do this. Is there really a need for conflict and trouble between the characters in scenes? By getting along and liking each other, a whole new world of conflict-free detail opens up. You give yourself and your partners the room to be anyone, do anything and be anywhere. This is a powerful and transformative approach that will change your improv for good!
Improvisation – like any other story telling art – uses the element of time, and does with it a variety of many cool things. It allows us to jump from one time to another,to be in two different times simultaneously, to slow or fast-forward the reality, to jump from the past to the future and much more! This intensive workshop it will take us from being totally present in the moment to time-traveling in an epic way, fast and funny way, with cinematic and theatrical qualities.
Learn how to improvise sustained, improvised stories in any style or genre! This course focuses on the core elements that make San Francisco-style (Improv Playhouse, 3 For All, True Fiction Magazine, BATS, etc.) Long-Form successful—Ensemble, Narrative, Acting, and Genres/Characters/Wheres. This intensive is for both improvisers with previous experience who want to step up to the next level, and for improvisers who are just starting to do long-form stories. (Warning: this course may give you the desire to do long-form improv for the rest of your life).
This workshop presents story structure based on Christopher Vogler’s adaptation of “The Hero’s Journey”. The participants will discover how to use this structure in a manner adapted for an improvised long form narrative performance. This unique workshop provides tools for developing and applying the “Hero’s Journey” in a flexible and free way that does not make the improvisation rigid and predictable. The Hero’s Journey is not a prison that restricts your improvisation, in understanding the movements of a story the Hero’s Journey liberates the creativity in any long form narrative performance.