Warning: improv nerdery!
So as part of my super busy week, I am taking a number of improv workshops. One in particular has really resonated with me. It was rooted in a number of emotional acting techniques, such as those pioneered by Lee Strasberg, Meisner, and Stanislavsky.
One of the exercises consisted of two improvisers on stage acting out an emotion. No words – sounds and body language only. Of course, the one I got was love. I got through it without getting too weird. I think.
And then, as they say, shit got real. We did a Strassberg exercise called 12345. The idea is that all you can say is 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 in any combination or order. The actual message is emotional: the improvisor has to tap into his own feelings and emotions and bring that out. But because the actual text is just digits which allows the improvisor to think of something that he/she feels safe and comfortable to unload whatever was weighing on their souls.
So I unburdened myself. It felt liberating, cathartic even. After the workshop, a feeling of easiness and warm energy filled my core. It did not last for the whole day. But it felt good and positive to do that. Even though I have been doing a writing equivalent of this here for the past two months, doing a vocal exercise gave me an extra dimension of the sharing experience.
Not sure what this will mean for the future but I’m interested to keep finding out.