Megan's Head

A place where Megan gets off her head.

Tag: improv (Page 1 of 15)

Improv for my life

For those of you who know me you know that I love directing theatre, performing plays and writing them, but my big love, if I were forced to choose, is improvising. I am the happiest and luckiest when I am making things up, especially in front of an audience. I have been very clever about living my dream. For the past 24 years I have been doing this almost every week, in some form or another. I remember thinking, when I was in my 30s that there was an age limit to this form of play, but I haven’t stopped and I love it more all the time.

Last night we practiced a new format that we’ll be ‘premiering’ at ImproGuise‘s fifth annual improv festival (can you believe we have done 5 improv festivals?) that takes place at my favourite Alexander Bar from 6 to 11 March. This new format is called Tribute and how it works (kind of) is that the first half is the back story of the band or musicians we are paying tribute to, and the second half is the tribute band playing their songs. Everything is made up. For those of you who know me, singing is not a strong suit of mine, but I love it nonetheless, and I will be belting it out with the best of us. I cannot wait.

Every single of the five nights is a different format, and the Alexander Bar is teeny, so you should start booking for the ones you definitely want to see.

Also starting in March is our new Improv for Beginners training course. I haven’t been involved in the teaching or running of one of these for a bit, and this year Tandi Buchan and I will be doing it together. It is also another favourite thing of mine to do. If you are keen, please email Tandi on tandibuchan@gmail.com for info on dates, times and costs. This course will change how you do life, and it is for everybody, so come and play.

2 Parrots and a Sandcastle

IMG_6968So, my way of starting the new year is with three improv shows at my fave Alexander Bar, this coming Thursday, Friday and Saturday night. I will be performing with a different improviser each night, for an hour of made up stuff, with no pre-plan or any idea at all about what we will be doing. I cannot wait.

The line up of performers joining me is unbelievable and I am so lucky to have these people to come and play, and fulfil my dream and first love, improv.

Tandi Buchan, AD of Improguise, our improv troupe, joins me on Thursday night. We have been improvising together for over twenty years now. In fact, Tandi is like my improv wife. We are so safe with each other, but still continue to surprise each other. Tandi is imagination. Tandi is a storytelling machine and brilliant characters. Tandi is Noel Coward and South African Soap. I love being on stage with her.

Friday night is Brett Anderson night. It is also the night of his birthday, so double celebration. Brett ‘take it and run with’ it Anderson is a different kind of partner in crime. Wordsmith, rhyme guy and creative punster, Brett gives me a run for my money with quick thinking and wittiness. I so enjoy being on stage with him.

On Saturday it’s Leon Clingman’s chance to join me. I have been waiting for a chance to share a stage for an hour with Leon. We really get each other as improvisers. With Leon I can take risks. With Leon there is conflict and drama and relationships. Leon is my improv husband. I know it is going to be interesting, and amazing.

I don’t want you to have to choose which night to join us. Come to all three. It’s cheap as bad gossip. R80 if you book online.

Improv Inspiration

Not that I need it, but yesterday is living proof that improv is the most extraordinary tool and philosophy in the corporate environment.

A few weeks ago I was approached by an international company who wanted to find out about the possibility of doing some industrial theatre at a conference. They had a product (a data system) that needed to be launched, and they wanted us to spice up the launch and make it fun and exciting. After a lovely chat, they were broad minded enough to consider my suggestion that we run an improv workshop/show shop with the delegates (instead of doing rehearsed sketches), and then pepper the presentation with some improvised interventions. (I must add here that the terrifying idea of trying to understand the product and then deliver accurate content around it was the main reason why I wanted to avoid writing a script and then rehearsing the stuff).

Only after I had sold the idea to them did I hear that there were going to be 200 delegates. 200! That is 200 people in a room, 10 at a table, 20 tables.

So when we (three veteran improvisers) arrived at the venue yesterday and started setting up while everyone was at lunch I felt like an imposter. How were we going to pull this off? I shouldn’t have worried. It was magnificent, and energising, and hilarious and potent and unbelievably barrier breaking. It worked. It was amazing. My fellow improvisers Tandi Buchan and Brett Anderson were superb, and we managed to change and charge the room.

Now this is all I want to do, for the rest of my life. So, if you need us, let me know. Send me a line on megan@improvision.co.za

 

An ImproGuise Letter

Many of you know me as an improviser. I have been improvising, teaching improv, and involved in all shapes and sizes of improv in Cape Town for close to 25 years. It is my first love. Our group was originally popularly known as TheatreSports, and then it became ImproGuise, and we are proud to call ourselves the longest running live show in South Africa. This letter that follows is a letter to all that know, love and support us.

A Letter from the Improguise improvisers

To all our fans, friends, supporters, patrons, reviewers, fellow improvisers, suggestion givers, audiences, and those who have laughed along with us for 23 years,

As you know, Improguise is Cape Town’s (and South Africa’s) longest running, most loved and creative improv company. We have been performing continuously in Cape Town and around the country for the last 23 years, bringing you our well known brand of TheatreSports, and introducing you to other fabulous improv formats; some that we learned from fellow improvisers across the globe, and some that we invented all by ourselves. We have entertained schools, corporates, performed at festivals and overseas improv celebrations, performed our own week long improv festivals, improv marathons and of course, carried on performing our weekly shows to our faithful audiences.

We think it’s time to start doing things differently.

We have gotten better and better and we want to be able to bring the best of what we do to different stages and audiences, new and old. So this is what we are going to be doing in order to change the way we bring improv to you. We have decided to focus on little runs of improv at various venues around Cape Town, and even South Africa, where we will focus on a particular style, or format of improv. Occasionally we have done these very successful improv shows in the past, and now it is going to be the way we move forward.

So, what’s up next? Where can you see us? On the 1, 2, and 3 of September we will be performing three nights of Word Play at The Alexander Bar. This is an exciting new format using words as improv inspiration. The Alexander Bar is an intimate venue with only 44 seats, so make sure you book soon, and online to get your booking discount.

Then, later on in October Improguise will be participating in the Mama City International Improv festival, that is being held in Cape Town, and the details are still being finalised for that.

We are in talks for a series of three shows in November in our old stomping ground in the Southern Peninsula, and will let you know about this the minute dates have firmed up. And we can announce that those dates have firmed up as 27, 28, 29 November at the Masque Theatre in Muizenberg

 

The best way to find out about where we are and what we’ll be doing is on social media. Check out our website www.improguise.co.za, like our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/ImproGuise/, and follow our twitter account @ImproGuiseSA for all our latest news.

 

We want to continue to bring the best improv to you.

 

With much love and respect

 

The Improguise Guys

Our 4th Improv Fest

ImprovFestI cannot believe that we ImproGuisers are about to perform our 4th Improv Fest, from 14-19 March, at The Galloway Theatre.

Inspired by an amazing improv travel experience to Oz in 2012, Candice D’Arcy (now living in Oz with Melbourne improviser Mark Gambino), Tandi Buchan (artistic director of ImproGuise), and I came back with inspiration, motivation and a lot of madness, and slapped together an improv festival that offered the best improv in short and long formats.

We were amazed at the amazement of our audiences. We listened to what they loved the most. We were inspired by their suggestions. And we did the festival three times in a row, for the last three years.

This year the biggest difference is the venue. Our last three week long festivals were in Kalk Bay, but now we will be performing at ImproGuise’s home base, The Galloway Theatre. This makes it much more accessible for most of our fans, (although there will be a few long faces because we are not on the other side).

Every single night of the week will present a different improv form; some tried and tested, and our audience favourites as well as one entirely new, very dangerous one, Naked Improv, where absolutely nothing is known beforehand.

I am not gonna lie. We have been performing improv in Cape Town for 23 years now, and the biggest challenge is getting, and keeping, an audience. It is tough, and we have to do a tightrope balance of reinventing ourselves and doing what our audiences love. If you have seen us before (or if you embarrassingly never have) please come and get a sample of this smorgasbord of improv delights.

Tickets are ridiculously cheap. R80, and R70 for students or for block bookings. They are available here on TIXSA and you can find out more if you call our own booking line 0729393351. Every night is different. Choose your best from the line-up in the poster, or take a risk.

 

 

February Improv Line up

feb Improv flier

 

Brett made this fabulous flyer for our February line-up. Choose a night, or even more than one, and join us.

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