Improv Corner – Tricks Of The Trade… (Inspired by Richard Yee)

A while ago I came across an article that featured Director Richard Yee. I have no idea where it was from or what the whole article was about but considering he is a Director of Idiot Abroad and Sick Of It, it must of been an article about Karl Pilkington and must of been a recent one for Comedy Clicks.

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Anyway in this article, which must of been about Sick Of It, he describes about his ‘tricks of the trade’. These are a bullet point of things he aims to do and when I read them I felt that they related to improv. So today, using the Richard Yee bullet points, I am going to use his points to compare as to why they are for Improv as well.

+ Scare Yourself – I think this is very related to improv. When you eventually start to feel safe on stage you can sometimes jump to ‘safe’ characters or decisions that you do regularly in a scene. Why not scare yourself and delve into the deep end and try something new. Yes it is scary but it is also hopefully rewarding.

+Be prepared and be prepared to change – The thing about improv is that you cannot predict what is going to happen so all you can do is be prepared. Whether it is to accept something or support a scene partner. Improvisers are always prepared.

Create a playful atmosphere on set on stage – The best thing about improv is that is it naturally playful so you are in that zone already. However, make sure that your team are enjoying themselves in a show – it’s great if the audience are but it is important that you do as well.

+ Eat drink, water, sleep – Yes Richard Yee makes this point in relation to TV sets and filming but this is just as vitally important in improv – got an evening show? make sure that you eat well before you go on stage, stay hydrated and make sure that you always get a good night sleep after a show.

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