Improvisational Comedy (I'm the Owner of The San Francisco Improv Alliance and producer of The San Francisco Improv Festival)
How did you discover improvisation?
1982 while attending A Second City Chicago Performance as part of training at The Goodman School, Chicago
How do you practice improvisation?
Like any theatrical performance I have ever done. Throw yourself head first into it. I think that is the answer to the question if not? Here's this one: I enjoy and practice all formats of improv comedy (short, long, storytelling, one person, two person, deconstruction, Harold doesn't matter to me) Huh? Still not the right answer? Okay. How about "With every part of my body" No? I'm sorry. I'll get back to ya on that one.
How did you learn?
Professionally I was lucky to attend the Second City School of Improvisation in Chicago (my hometown) from some incredible teachers. I also learned a lot of Commedia and Dramatic Improvisation through John Bergman and Geese Theatre Company. Personally I improvised every time I got in trouble at home.
Any advice for beginners?
Play. Play like you have never played. You got nothing to lose, why not? Look your partner in the eye, listen and play. Apply everything you have ever learned ever and play. Yes. Play.
What is your favourite improvisation quote?
What are you going to improvise about now? - Martin DeMaat The Second City Chicago when an actor denies an offer.
The most satisfying story or scene you ever improvised in?
I have been improvising for over twenty years, so to pick one out of thousands is almost impossible. There was a gibberish scene I did with two women I really respect at ImprovBoston on tour where the only words used were slurred "Hey" "how ya doin" and "I'm Good" That was (as they would say in Boston) wicked pissa fun. Being able to expressed yourself with only those words.
Your favourite improvisation website
mainly because one is National and the other has a more international appeal.