Author Archives: MaDmin

banner_improvlounge

Tuesday Workouts in July/August 2017!

The Tuesday Workout is WIT’s regular training session if you’ve graduated from a WIT introductory course or have equivalent training and improv experience with another troupe.   In 2017 these are being run as koha – pay what you can, but don’t fret if you can’t.

We are usually in the Library Mezzanine Meeting Room, but sometimes in other spaces, as room bookings in Wellington were made just a little bit more tricky than usual by that darn earthquake last year.

4-Jul Wellington Central Library, Mezzanine Room 6pm
11-Jul Wellington Central Library, Mezzanine Room 6pm  WIT’s AGM  Signup (to enable pizza planning) here
18-Jul [venue to be confirmed]
25-Jul Wellington Central Library, Mezzanine Room 6pm
Aug-1 Wellington Central Library, Mezzanine Room 6pm
Aug-8 Wellington Central Library, Mezzanine Room 6pm
Aug-15 [venue to be confirmed]
Aug-22 Wellington Central Library, Mezzanine Room 6pm
Aug-29 Wellington Central Library, Mezzanine Room 6pm

If you’d like to keep up with WIT’s training plans sign up to our Newsletter and you’ll know all the things!   If you have a quick question, a message to our Facebook page is often the quickest way to get in touch, or contact us through this handy form.

Read more about our training.

Note: If you are new to improv, Level 1 The Joy of Improvisation, runs through the Wellington Community Education Centre 4 times a year.

 

 

Micetro

How Micetro Works

A quick guide for players

Micetro, pronounced as ‘Maestro’, and indeed now called Maestro in many places.

This format was devised by Keith Johnston and is administered by the International Theatresports Institute.  It was created to allow performers of mixed abilities to work together. Typically there are 10-14 players (although in a large venue some groups play with up to 20), an MC, a musician and 1 or 2 directors and a lighting improvisor.

It is a game-of-a-game, with the players pretending to the audience that they are really serious about ‘competing’ with each other (stakes are high), although everyone is working together to create a great experience for the audience.  However, the feedback from the audience – who judge each scene – is quite real, an instant judgement on each scene.

In some shows the players are called by numbers, wearing big bold numbers on their clothes so the audience can see.  The person wearing number one will typically assume the persona of the “last week” or “last season” winner (real or not).

The directors choose for every scene the appropriate number of players, usually fishing name tags or numbers out of a hat, although these may be tweaked slightly to ensure that newer players are well supported. The directors explain the improv game to be played, may ask the audience for suggestions, direct and correct the scene.  Depending on the venue, suggestions may also be collected before the show, for example if the ‘pick up lines’ game is being played.

After each scene or game the audience decides, by cheering and applause how many points the scene should be awarded, with one being for a not-so-good scene, and a five a scene that made them laugh and cry.  Each player gets as many points as the scene he or she played in was awarded, although the MC may give or deduct extra points for good or ‘bad’ player behavior.  Note the “Last Name” rule.  If a director *really* wants you to stop the mischief, they will use your last name.   So, “Billy, it’s time to leave the stage” means “Billy, carry on”, while “Smithers, time to leave the stage” means really go now this has gone on too long.

Also, *be happy* if your scene is awarded a one or two, your audience have judged you correctly!  The evening will be much more interesting than if every scene is given a three.   Also, this is not a fair competition. Because it is not a competition.

Once everyone has played in a scene (or more often two), the players with the lowest score take a bow and leave, happily and gracefully, and the whole thing starts again.  Usually there are about five rounds in a one hour show. The directors generally ensure that that there are more group-games at the start of the evening, and more 2-person scenes or even monologues toward the end of the evening.

This is a fun format designed to be played with mixed bunches of experienced and not-so-experienced players, with challenges for all. Since players are immediately judged, it is perfectly possible to loose a star player near the start.  Being eliminated doesn’t mean someone is out of the show: there will be opportunities to leap back on stage when there’s a need for a forest in the background, or a backing chorus for a rousing song.

In the end there will be one player acclaimed Micetro: this is the signal for all the players to return to the stage and admire the winner.

Typical games you might expect to see in a WIT Micetro

Word at a time
Speak in one voice
Epic poem or Wanky Poem
Experts – either Arms Experts or Deaf Interpreter
Musical rollercoaster, or emotional rollercoaster
Numbers of words (speaking in sentences the length controlled by the director)
Touch to talk
Song, sonnet sermon
Rhyming Couplet scene
Opera
Foreign Film
Death in a Minute
Scene ending in I love you
Songs on a topic of the audiences choosing (typically folk or rock ballads)

[adapted from The Improv Encyclopedia itself sourced from the original source of all things Micetro, Keith Johnstone’s Impro for Storytellers]

Resources (or just make your own, these are just one guide) :
MC Sheet : Micetro Score Sheet_revised
Directors’ Notes : Micetrodirectorsheet

Short form fun show

Winter Micetro – June 2017

Beloved improv elimination competition Micetro came back for another bite of the cheese.

A crew of eager improvisers went head to head in a battle of wit, spur-of-the-moment storytelling and glorious failure.  A mix of seasoned improvisers and adorable newcomers, and everything in between played their hearts out to decide who got eliminated and who survived to be crowned ‘Micetro’.

Price:
Koha, with a hat passed around at the end

When:
Thursday June 1st, 7pm–8pm
Thursday June 8th, 7pm–8pm
Thursday June 15th, 7pm–8pm

Where:
The Fringe Bar, 26-32 Allen St, Te Aro, Wellington

Websites:
WIT Event Facebook Page

 

vinniefrancois

Vinny Francois, StoryCrafting 18th and 19th of March

vinniefrancois

Vinny Francois, StoryCrafting, 18th and 19th of March 2017

Vinny has over 20 years of experience as a professional improviser. A founding director of the Montreal Improv Theatre, he has performed in more shows and venues across Canada than he cares to count. Read his complete bio or watch Vinny in action.

The workshop:
Both days will be on storycrafting and yes you can sign up for just one day. The times will be between 10am to 5pm with an hour for lunch.

Storycrafting (narrative improv) (Intermediate/Advanced)
How do stories work? Learn how to weave a tale out of thin air whether it’s two minutes long or a whole hour. Start strong scenes, build the tension as the story evolves and finish it up on a high. Audiences LOVE being taken on a journey. This workshop teaches the structures, ideas and basics of narrative improv as it applies to individual scenes or improvised plays.

Purchasing tickets:
– go to www.eventbrite.co.nz/e/vinny-francois-storycrafting-18th-and-19th-of-march-tickets-32382180975
– Click on the button “SELECT A DATE” and choose “Sat, 18th Mar (10:00am)”.
– Once the date is selected click on the button “TICKETS”.
– You will now have the option to select one or both days.

Questions:
If you have any questions please email drentha@gmail.com

The Ferris Wheel – Fringe Fest February 2017

eventfinda

The Ferris Wheel has spun!!  WIT’s four fun nights at the Cavern Club as part of the 2017 Fringe Festival, are over. The Theatreview reviewer found opening night “Fresh and invigorating“.

The Wellington Improvisation Troupe was delighted to present Wade Jackson’s compelling format Ferris Wheel.  Each night, enjoy unique stories were wound together on the ride that changed everything. Love won and lost, fortunes and futures made or broken. Some stories were just beginning. Others turn to an unlooked-for end.

Lives were spun!

Price: Koha, with a hat passed around at the end, but if you have nothing spare to put in it that’s okay, we’d still like you to come enjoy our show.

When:
Fri 10 Feb 2017, 6:30pm–7:30pm
Sat 11 Feb 2017, 6:30pm–7:30pm
Sun 12 Feb 2017, 6:30pm–7:30pm
Mon 13 Feb 2017, 6:30pm–7:30pm
Where:The Cavern Club, 22 Allen St, Te Aro, Wellington

Websites:
WIT Event Facebook Page
Fringe Festival Page – Koha Ticket

So, get out and enjoy Wellington’s lively live theatre and comedy scene.  In comparison that flickering screen in the corner of your lounge is, well, quite flat.

 

New committee for 2016/17

WIT’s annual general meeting was held on Tuesday 26th of July, and a new committee elected with a heady mix of fresh faces and ol’ hands:

Co-ordinator: Kate Zabranski
Creative Directors: Wiremu Tuhiwai and Anrik Drenth
Treasurer: Todd Rangiwhetu
Secretary: Hedy Manders

If you want to ask questions, make comments or tell us things you think WIT needs to know, get in contact!

 

 

cropped-bannerfront_2

Improv Next Step (Level Two)

Improv Next Step (formerly Improvisation For The Stage) runs for eight weeks two or three times a year.  It is ideally suited to people who have completed WIT’s introductory course, Level 1 The Joy of Improvisation, or those with previous experience of improv.  Read more about our training, or please contact us if you have any questions.

The next course will be in October, and is being run in co-operation with the Wellington Community Education Centre – Signup here!

bannerhighschoollink

Matt Powell

Matt Powell

Matt Powell is an accomplished improvisor with over 15 years’ experience teaching, performing, and directing improvisation. In addition to 12 years with Christchurch’s Court Jesters, Matt has taught around New Zealand and Australia, as well as by invitation at the 2015 FÉRIIR improvisation festival on Réunion Island.

In 2014, while still living in Christchurch, Matt was twice invited to teach WIT intensives on body language and direction in improv.  He loved Wellington so much he moved here in 2015, and continues to create fresh and innovative improvisation, including several shows with PlayShop and, with Jennifer O’Sullivan, the award-winning 2016 Fringe show Awkward Threesome.

As a teacher, he has a particular focus on connection, collaboration, and finding joy in the moment.