The Velawesomeraptor Himself (clayrobeson) wrote,
The Velawesomeraptor Himself

Step Back. Let Go.

I remember the first time I saw Improv done really well. It was the first show I saw at the Improv Asylum, just over 10 years ago. I had been taking classes there, but hadn't been to a show, so I finally went to watch my Level 1 instructor, Amy Roeder, do her thing.

I can't even explain how dumbstruck I was. But I knew, at that moment, with every fiber of my being, that this is what I had to do.

To this day, when I see amazing Improv, it inspires me and lifts my heart. Seriously, it feels like someone puts their hand underneath my heart and lifts upwards. Sometimes so much so that it hurts.

One of the reasons I enjoy working with Un-Scripted so much is that I see shit that does that to me on a regular basis... and sometimes I get to be right in the middle of it.

Each member of the cast tonight was given a slip of paper with two "Secret Notes" on it. The were things that the Director and AD wanted to see us work on. My two secret notes were "Play a character who overreacts to things." And "Play a character with a distinct body language/physical tick."

In one of the scenes I did, I went in totally over the top, reacting to something that had happened in the scene prior (which I wasn't a part of), and in that split second before I went on stage, someone said something that completely turned my take on what I was about to do around. Like, a complete 180. But I just ran with it, overreacted my little heart out, and stormed off.

The next scene found me on stage, continuing my overreaction as the same character, drunk on a stoop. Angry drunk. Unpleasant drunk. And Trish Tillman came out in her Sultry Seducer mode and brought the anger overreaction around so the character was sobbing against her chest while she started a song. And then we danced.

Now, I've danced for a long time. Beneath my Micheline Man exterior is the body of a dancer, and sometimes he can fight his way through the beer coozy around my six pack just enough to shine. And boy did he do that tonight. Trish and I sang and danced this sort of Tango-esque number that just... well, it felt right. I let go and just did whatever the moment called for, and it was sexy and tense and just umph-tastic. And when it was over, I noticed my heart was being shoved up into my upper chest.

Then, towards the end of rehearsal, we worked on Improvised Dance. Just dance, no singing. We went through a couple iterations, then this number started and the suggestion we got was simple "There are two groups." Of course, it started out 3 and 3, doing their own thing. Then some mimicry started, and the it became 2 and 4, and then 5 and Keck. And Keck became the one that was always one beat behind the others. So as soon as he would join us in whatever we were doing, we would move on to the next thing. It became this amazing, and heart wrenching game, until Dave decided to stick with him. At which point, without even looking at each other, we all bolted back across the stage to join them for the end of the peace. It was cute and sad, and again, one of those Improv moments that you wish you could find in every show.

Damn, I love this gig.

Surrounded by Inspiration
Tags: improv

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