Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Jenni Makes a Shameless Plug for W.I.P

My wife has finally learned that there is no such thing as a quick visit to the Empress Theatre. It looks like Jenni is learning a similar lesson, and lived to tell about it.

Last night I stopped by the Empress to drop off some things for tonight’s Joseph cast party, and what was meant to be a brief visit turned into a seven-hour stay… I had forgotten that Work In Progress holds their workshop every Thursday evening at the theater.

I asked Jourdan Dixon, the evil mastermind behind "Work in Progress" (or "Quick as a W.I.P" as they like to refer to themselves), about these Thursday workshops the improv group does. Here's what he told me:

Anyway, yes, I'd like them [The Work in Progress workshops] publicized. With WIP, they need to audition, so go ahead and put how to audition. They can email empressimprov@gmail.com. They should email a resume and preferrably a headshot to that address. The ones who teach the workshops vary between who I assign each week. There is no cost for the workshops if they pass the audition. If they don't pass the audition, they may not attend. We teach short form improv mainly, but occasionally teach long form as well. Short form is the basic improv that people are used to in the short game format. I'm not gonna go into the long form details.

The workshops are held every Thursday from 6:30 - 9:30 PM in the upstairs rehearsal hall of the Empress. We are offering the workshops because even improv teams need rehearsal time. Not that we perform exact stuff that we rehearse, but it's mainly technique and theory. That's how you do improv. Use every fiber of your own being and use your insticts combined with an outline of quirks and tricks etc.

If someone goes into improv thinking that they can hide from who they are, they got another think coming. So, I guess I'm trying to help people gain people skills, confidence and awareness. I let 3 non-graduated people on the team at any given moment. I don't want too many because on school dance weekends I'd be out of luck with scheduling and because they are generally harder to deal with because of how reliable they are etc. I have 1 team member who is in high school who is one of the most dependable people on the team. He has progressed more than ANYONE else on the team. When we first started, he was awkward and not confident and nobody wanted to perform with him. He has become a player who everyone wants to perform with and who is more than confident in who he is. His communication skills are a 180 from where they were. I mainly keep doing this because of people like him. Not for myself as much. Don't get me wrong, I enjoy it, but it's seeing other progress that keeps me going.

1 comment:

Nate and Angie said...

I remember the show where that picture of Jourdan and Blake was taken. Cuz I took it! He-He! Anyway, it was a great show. They always are. Great job WIP!