Today was our final class for week three and it was a full day. We began with a typical warm-up of the game “Zip Zap Zop” followed by a partner exercise where two people spelled each letter of the alphabet together with their entire bodies. This was both hilarious and physically taxing. After we had warmed up, we began the “Notes Gauntlet” that Nicole had used with us the week before. Like the last time, the Notes Gauntlet involves your teacher having a student perform something that challenges their boundaries and is outside their normal wheelhouse. For my turn, Jeff had me play an entirely dramatic scene in an attempt to make myself more vulnerable onstage. It definitely wasn’t my best work but it was an experience nonetheless. After the Notes Gauntlet, we began discussing satire. Satire, by definition, exposes human folly and makes a statement while doing that. Satire is not the same thing as parody, though. While satires use parody, parodies do not have a point of view and therefore are not satirical. There are two types of satire, political and social. Political satire pokes fun at institutions, such as the media, the prison system, the school system, and the church. Social satire focuses more on the silliness of societal rules that involve sexism, misogynist events, and racism. Our exercise for this topic involved us teaming up and picking something to satirize. My group chose to make fun of people who are always so “busy” but can’t show anything for it once they have to prove it. The scene went well and even involved Jeff getting up and joining for a brief moment. Overall, I really enjoyed this week of improv.
In sketch, we performed our audience interaction sketches. Since there was a lot of planning and set-up for these, the performances took much longer than usual. My classmates as usual were brilliant and I even participated as an audience member in one of the scenes. My scene went well too, even when I thought maybe things would go wrong. I used three audience members while my classmates all used one, so I was worried. It turned out to provide a safety net for the other participants which was a built-in plus. After performing, we began discussing “Mapping” or class of context. This is when you move a group of characters, relationship, or context from its expected environment to an unexpected one. In this new context, rules of one situation applied to another. These scenes are hysterical and I enjoyed brainstorming with my classmates. My final pitch was someone on the first day of school being nervous. Eventually, that someone would be revealed to actually be a new teacher. By using familiar tropes like the popular kids, the jocks, the geeks, etc, one can pair these two world together and make a cohesive story that overlaps in theme. For next week, Glenn told us to write a sketch that is outside our comfort zone, so we shall see!
I saw An American in Paris tonight with some friends and my sister. The show was incredible. The backdrop was almost completely composed of detailed projections which was fascinating. The story was beautiful, the dancing was spectacular, and I got emotional at the end. Gotta love a happy ending.