A few years ago, I took a workshop with Katie Rich (now on Second City mainstage). She was in Pittsburgh with TourCo and was delighted to take some time out and put together a class for a rag tag bunch of improv enthusiasts. She started the workshop by asking us what every improv scene needs (my apologies to Katie, but I am sure I don’t remember this correctly):
Then she told us her answer,
“Two people who care about each other. Who have a reason to be on stage together.”
This has been fundamental to my views on improvisation. Even prior I felt this way, but that moment helped put it into words for me. As I performed short form, studied long form, learned game and Harold, played with genre or with montage -- my goal has always been to care about what I am doing and who I am doing it with.
And not only on stage. I believe in passion as motivation. There is a lot of elbow grease that goes into a creative pursuit. I would rather see people fail trying to do something risky and challenging -- pushing themselves to the limits of what they could do -- then see people succeed at a mediocre show that I’ve seen them do before.
And these Katie Rich moments continue to happen for me. I feel passionately about my opinions, but I still lead the way for them to change when I am shown the joy of another way (or possibility).
That is the purpose of this blog: to explore my own thoughts and to create dialog with other improvisers (to get at something I care deeply about -- continuous improvement).
So for all those who care, welcome.