I took an Improv class this summer. And I really loved my Improv class this summer. Like the acting class I took last fall, it was great to be thrown together with people with whom I ordinarily wouldn’t cross paths, and to play silly warm-up games like “Zip-Zap-Zop” and “Woosh!” with enthusiasm.
I work at an accounting firm, people – I’m near-starved for silliness during the week. Improv was a great outlet.
The classes were long – three hours on a Monday night – but I loved creating something with my classmates – even if all we were creating were quick 3-line scenes and spontaneous, rambling monologues. I entered each session feeling a bit workaday-worn-out, but by the end of the class I had such a rush of energy.
I was there, I was present, I was focused and using my wits. I was talking, I was shouting, I was sometimes singing. I was stretching, walking, twisting, clapping. I was zipping, zapping, zopping. Playing.
And I felt (oh Lord, I sense a cliché coming on…) alive.
I also felt terrified. Because Improv is scary. It is challenging. It is rife with opportunities for failure.
It is also rife with opportunities to learn about yourself. I drew so many life-application lessons out of my classes - lessons that extend far beyond the reaches of the Improv stage and apply to inter-personal relationships, character development in writing, finding “your voice” and speaking truthfully from that place, slowing down and being fully present, etc. etc.
I could go on.
In fact, I will go on. Because I signed up for another Improv class which started last month, and it’s been teaching me tons. I'm digging it mucho, as they say in Mexico.
Stay tuned, as I will be sharing some of those Improv life-application lessons in the weeks ahead. You can follow along at home, if you like.
But no pressure. If you’d rather watch this instead of reading about my Improv experiences, I completely understand. Nay, I encourage it.