How to Improve Improvisational Skills

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How to Improve Improvisational Skills. Memorizing lines and creating a character is very tough to do in the world of film and theater, but improvising makes them look easy. Improvising involves spur-of-the-moment thinking that really comes from knowing a character. The actors essentially make up their own lines, acting out a scene. Here are some tips for overcoming any improv fears.

  • Relax! Improv is supposed to be fun. If you stress about the idea of making up your own lines, you won't do well at all.

  • Listen to your colleagues. The responses of others can work as triggers, helping you conjure up lines or reactions.

  • Release your inhibitions. Do not be afraid to pick your nose or belch, as this may set off a 5 to 10 minute series of conversations with which to improvise.

  • Be specific in dialogue. Don't say, "I went to the restaurant." Instead, say "I went to Wendy's, had me a spicy chicken, lettuce only of course." The more specific the better, as it instills the setting into the mind of viewers.

  • Play to your strengths. So many people avoid this for whatever reason, but if you're a baseball fan, massage the conversation to discuss baseball. Then it isn't so much improvising as it is having an unplanned conversation.

  • Never say "no" to your partner. Saying "no" stunts the growth of the conversation and makes the scene awkward as both parties scramble to come up with a new topic.

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