Any actor will tell you about those truly real and electric moments on stage, where the consciousness about what you are doing disappears and you are so in the moment and so attached to your fellow actors that it feels like the whole universe is joined together. They have happened to me about twenty times in all, and add up to about half an hour’s worth of time. That’s how rare it is. But it’s what keeps you going back for more.
It’s the same when you are improvising. There is a switch moment, from playing a character in a situation to everything being totally real and meaningful. And you never know when or if it’s going to happen. You can perform in shows where you (and your fellow players) come close. You can perform and miss entirely. You can stumble on a moment and then it disappears as quickly as it arrived. Or you can achieve the big prize of being in ‘animation’ for a whole chunk of the show. When you come off stage, parts of the performance are a blur. You have been energetically connected to the audience. You are full.
Last night’s TheatreSports show was no more spectacular than the next. There were some great moments and some struggle ones. There always are. In fact, the comments at our notes session were that the games we played were all too long and so the show dragged on. And yet, there were those moments. Not huge ones, or long ones, or flashing ones. But moments where we went to that other magical place. And we were rewarded.