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 Learn Improv Basics

Host an Improv Party

Improv is a fantastic party activity. You can either do an improv game or two at another function, or host an entire party dedicated to improv.

This is how I got started in improv. Someone invited me to an improv party in 1993 and I've never gotten enough since. (Lincoln)

Improv parties are great for increasing teamwork and gettings groups to work better together. They are also fun and make great 'get to know you' games.

You Will Need:

  • Someone to Host the Improv Party (probably you)
  • A space big enough for your group, plus movement/performance space (living rooms work great, you can push some furniture out of the way. Outdoors at a park can also be fun, if you don't mind strange looks from passers-by)
  • A few friends, family or random people off the street
  • A list of improv games
  • Willingness to have fun
  • Water for the Players

The Party Structure

1) Create a Safe Space
This is very important. If anyone feels that they will be mocked or judged, they will be much less willing to participate. It is very easy to hurt someone's feelings when they are taking a risk. You can do this simply by talking everyone through the ground rules.

2) Start Off with a Warm-Up or two
These will get everyone relaxed, laughing, and in the mood to have fun and work together as a team.

3) Explain the Concept of Improvisation
This of course depends on the level of the group. The most essential aspect is to respect each other's ideas, and ACCEPT all information given. (see improv basics)

4) Play Some Easier Games
Easy is a relative term, so pick what you think your group might have an easy time with. Group games are great to start off with.

5) Play Any Games You Want
Now let loose and have fun! Throw in a game no-one's ever played before, make up a game, let people request games, go crazy!

6) Close with a Warm-Down
These are often the same as a warm-up...but done with the intent to gather in closing, instead of in opening. It's a good chance to bring everyone together and get ready to make the move back to 'real' life.

Party Tips

  • Move on to a new Game BEFORE anyone gets bored of the current game
  • Have water readily available (have treats handy if you like!)
  • Make a rule that no-one makes fun of anyone else
  • Make the setting very relaxed and informal

Ground Rules Suggestions

  • Support each other
  • Only make positive comments
    (this is different from a workshop situation under the guidance of an experienced teacher)
  • This is a safe place for people to take creative risks and make fools of themselves.
  • Have fun!
  • Keep it clean! It's easy to get a shock laugh with a dirty word or situation. Keeping it clean will create good habits and you'll get better faster.
  • Don't overthink! Just say whatever comes to your head.
  • If you have any rules relevant to your home or location, make them known.

If you have any questions, or feel that I've missed an important issue, please email me at info@santaclaritaimprov.com