This is one post of many that we will do in regards to cover emotion as there are so many exercises to do with this topic and it is also a strong part of improv. Emotion is used a lot in comedy to portray how a character is feeling and their reaction to things that are said in a scene.
Sometimes when you do improv, especially when you are first starting out, it is difficult to remember to put emotion to a character – this is usually because of nerves! Well never fear if you are one of those people there are many exercises that are used to help you use emotion in scenes. Today we will look at a couple of warm up games that are there to help.
The first game is one that many people use as a warm up not just to get you in the mood of using emotion but also to bring your energy levels up. Someone starts with a really boring saying or word and says it to the person next to them in the circle. The person next to them then says it to the person the opposite side of them heightening the level and the action in which it was received. By the time this goes round the circle the emotion and movement gets bigger and more dramatic and it’s really fun to play.
Whilst this game is predominantly used to focus on character it is also a great one to practise emotions. One person will be on the stage and walk on from one of the corners and approach the centre of the stage saying “is this the right room?” And the audience will say no – the person does this a number of times as lots of different characters that have different emotions and usually at really heightened states – this is why it makes such a great emotion practise game as you have to keep pushing yourself to come up with lots of new ideas.
Another game that is similar to the first one is a game called It’s Tuesday. This is another game that relies on a bland sentence to start it. Someone will start saying “It’s Tuesday” and the person next to them will do a mini monologue and choose an emotion to do it in. When they do their monologue the aim is to go completely over board on the emotion and it really creates humour and lots of fun.