background preloader

Improv games

Facebook Twitter

Long Form Improv Game - The Harold Improv Game. The Harold is a "long form" improv activity first developed in the 60s by theater director / teacher Del Close. Long form improvisational activities allow actors more time to develop believable characters and organic storylines. Whether the performance is a comedy or a drama is entirely up to the cast members. Long form improv can last from 10 to 45 minutes (or beyond)! If done well, it can be absolutely mesmerizing. If done poorly it can elicit snoring sounds from the audience. It begins with a suggestion from the audience. "Can someone name an object? " Once selected, the word, phrase, or idea becomes the centerpiece for the Harold.

Each cast member delivers an impromptu monologue. The Basic Structure: During the opener, cast members should listen intently and utilize some of the material In later scenes. The opening scene is usually followed by: 1) Three vignettes related to the theme. 2) A group theater game (involving some or all cast members). 3) Several more vignettes. Improv Game - Genre Switching - Drama Activity. For this improvisational activity, the actors select a random setting (or receive a suggested location from the audience). Then, the actors perform a quick, relatively “normal” scene. Here’s a basic example of what might unfold: Setting: Driver’s Education Class Driving Instructor: All righty, welcome to Mr. Fred’s Driver’s Ed. You must be, Marty. After a minute or less, the scene stops and the moderator (or one of the lead actors) announces that the scene needs a more specific genre.

Here are some genre ideas: Romance Science Fiction Horror / Suspense Fantasy Old 1940s Movies Prehistoric Times Musical Wildlife Documentary Western Once a genre has been obtained, the cast performs the scene once again, this time adding appropriate – and hopefully hilarious – alterations. For example, the Driver’s Ed scene could be mixed with some of the above genres to produce the following results: Prehistoric: A caveman instructor teaches a young Neanderthal how to drive a woolly mammoth. Improv Game - Off - Script. Most stage actors have been through this moment more than once: You are on stage, performing some big, important role in an extremely dramatic play. Your co-star delivers her line, and you know it is your turn to speak, but you cannot remember what you are supposed to say.

A half-second goes by, but it feels like two-hundred years of dead silence. The audience has no idea, but you are in the grip of every actor's nightmare. Then suddenly, you don't remember your line... Whew! With that in mind, try this constructive and often hilarious activity called "Off-Script. " How to Play: One person reads from a randomly selected script, preferably a two-petrson scene. A second person listens to the words and then incorporates him/herself into the scene. For example: Let's say the first performer is reading from The Glass Menagerie. Amanda: How old are you, Laura? Now, the second performer does not need to worry about saying the actual response to this line. Here's how the scene might play out: Improvisation Game - Foreign Film. This improvisational activity requires at least four actors. Two actors stand center stage; the others stand off to the side.

The two onstage actors ask the audience for a location. Once a setting has been selected, the scene can begin. The onstage actors speak in a fabricated language. Feel free to make it sound European, Asian, Polynesian, or completely imaginary. Just remember to avoid being disrespectful or stereotyping a specific culture. After each actor speaks their line of gibberish, the performers standing by will translate each line.

As per usual with improvisation, the performers should quickly establish interesting characters and a compelling conflict. For an easy laugh: The onstage performer says a long line of imaginary language. Actor #1: Javaka sholo? Translator #1: Do you like the coffee? Actor #2: Furba linglo zumba nicht hassen balinka noshenzie, javaka compella scholo hanja! Translator #2: Yes I do. Improv Game - Surprise Guests. This improv game can be used as a light-hearted drama exercise or a theatrical party activity. Set Up: One person volunteers to play "Host. " The Host leaves the room.

Three performers serve as the "Surprise Guests. " Each one asks the audience, "Who am I? " Remember, as with any improv game, encourage the audience to generate creative suggestions; the more outlandish the better! Surprise Guest Examples: Guest #1: An Astronaut with a Severe Fear of Heights Guest #2: An over-worked Elf from Santa's Toy Shop Guest #3: A Drunken Martha Stewart The Rules:Once the Guests have been established, the Host returns and the improv game begins. First, the Host pantomimes getting ready for the party, then Guest #1 "knocks" on the door.

The Host wants to figure out the identity of each Guest. Have fun! Improv Game - 60 Second Fairy Tales. For a good exercise in impromptu storytelling, try performing a well known fairy tale in one minute flat. Drama classes and acting troupes alike can use the “60 Second Fairy Tale” to sharpen improvisational skills. It's also a great game for families and kids. Here's How: Your cast size should be at least three people. (Four or five would be ideal.) One person serves as the Moderator, a person who interacts with the audience and plays the narrator, if necessary. The rest of the cast are the fairy tale performers.

The Moderator asks the audience for fairy tale suggestions. Snow WhiteRapunzelThe Little MermaidHansel and GretelSleeping BeautyLittle Red Riding Hood Then, the Moderator selects a story everyone in the cast knows quite well. The Performance Begins! Once the story has been chosen, the 60 second show can start. MODERATOR: “Okay, great, I heard someone suggest “The Three Little Pigs.” Then the performers begin to act out the story. Variations. Improv Game - Taxi Cab. I have seen this game performed by children as well as sharp-witted members of Improv Groups. No matter what the level, it is fun to watch and fun to be in. Number of performers: 3 - 6 How To Play: Set up one chair for the "taxi-cab driver" and several chairs for the "passenger seats. " One performer plays the role of the cab driver. The passenger hops into the back of the cab. Some examples: A secretive British agent.A snobby Opera singer.A hyper 4 year old.A friendly, overly talkative old woman.

Here's the gimmick: The cab driver adopts the personality traits of his customer. After the passengers have interacted with one another, the cab driver will start to drop off his/her customers. Dramatic Skills: This activity develops a performer's emulation ability. Teachers and directors should encourage their cast to try as many new personalities and emotions as possible. Have fun! Improv Game - Freeze Tag. The Basics: "Freeze Tag" (also known simply as "Freeze") is an improvisation game is a great drama exercise for performers at any level. It works best in groups of eight or more. Two volunteers step onto the stage while the rest of the actors sit and wait for the right moment to join in. "I Need a Location": As with most improv activities, audience participation is essential. The performers listen to a few of the suggestions. Calling "Freeze! " After the actors have been given enough time to create an interesting situation, the performers sitting in the audience can now participate.

Keep It Going: A brand new scene begins with a different setting and different characters. At first, improvisation activities might be very challenging for unseasoned performers.