Epsom & Ewell

Improvised Comedy

Jim Palmer of Horley u3a has offered to set up a one day workshop on Improv to gauge the interest of members.

If you are interested please contact Jim via the envelope link and if there is sufficient interest we can get a workshop arranged, and set up a group for going forward.

Improv
I’ve been running improv (improvised Comedy) workshops in the Tesco Community
Room for a couple of years. It’s been great fun. Of course, when lockdown started, the
room was closed and we had to suspend the workshops. At that time I thought that
maybe in three months or so we could get back to normal, which didn’t seem too bad.
By the middle of the summer it was obvious that wasn’t going to happen, so going
online was the only option. But could you do improv with everyone in those little boxes
that you see on the screen when you’re using Zoom? Well, that was answered for me by
Ed, my own improv teacher, who restarted his classes doing just that. I started attending
(if that’s the word) and realised what was possible. Improv is, of course, about
performing, but our improv stage is really no more than an empty space, usually with a
couple of chairs in it in case the performers want to sit down. We have no scenery, no
props, no costumes; everything has to be created in the audience’s imagination by the
performers. It’s a bit more challenging to do that on screen when you’re not in the same
place, but it can be done.

I restarted the workshops a few weeks ago and decided to make them fortnightly rather
than monthly. Online working has its advantages – no travelling, no need to book a
venue. Despite the occasional vagaries of the technology, they’ve worked well and we’re
finding more ways of adapting the things we do to make them possible online. For
instance, I often play a warm up game where we stand in a circle and throw an imaginary
ball to one another. It occurred to me that as the ball is imaginary, it will pass through
the ether perfectly well. All we had to do to adapt was for the person throwing the ball
to call the name of the person they were throwing it to. Mind you, we still managed to
lose the ball a few times.
Improv is about performing little sketches that we make up on the spot. You don’t need
any experience because improvising is something you can learn. All you need is a
willingness to join in and have fun. My workshops are a mixture of games, exercises and
sketches designed to help everyone learn to be better improvisers. If you’re interested in
knowing more, please get in touch.
Jim Palmer

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Amateur Dramatics Antiques 1
Art Art - Workshop
Art - Exploring Art Art - Looking at Art
Art - Teaching Astronomy
Bee Keeping Beer Tasting
Bird Watching Board Games
Bridge Bridge (Teaching)
British Sign Language Bucketeers
Canasta Carpet Bowls
Ceramics Chess
Church Crawlers Cinema
Coffee Club Cribbage
Cricket - Walking Crime Fiction
Crochet and Knitting Croquet
Cryptic Crosswords Current Affairs
Dancing - Ballroom Dancing - Belly
Darts Drama Appreciation
Embroidery Ewell Changemakers
Exploring Architecture Family History
Flamenco Dancing Flower Arranging
Folk Dancing French
French Beginners 1 French Beginners 3
Garden History Garden Project Group
Garden Wanderers German
German Beginners Guitar, accoustic
History - Post Roman History - Social & Local
History - Various eras Improvised Comedy
Introduction to Forensic Science Italian
Italian Improvers Jazz Group
Jewellery Making Juggling
Latin Lunch - Sunday
Lunch Clubs Mah-Jong
Maths for Grandparents Model Railways
Modern Jazz Moral / Ethical Issues
Motorcycling Music Appreciation
Needlecraft Nordic Walking
Opera Orienteering
Philosophy Photography
Play Reading Poetry Appreciation
Poetry Reading Prog Rock
Quilting Racketball
Rackets Mornings Reading
Rescue Dogs walk and talk Rummikub
Russian Studies Scandinavian Interests
Science Scrabble for Pleasure
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Social Scrabble Spanish Beginners
Spanish Conversation Spanish Intermediate
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TAI CHI Tapestry
Ten Pin Bowling Town Study Group
Ukulele Beginners Ukulele Playing
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Writing - Short Story Writing Workshop
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