These quotes came to me from a fantastic improviser and friend of mine Tim Orr and apply to the kind of improv that I enjoy and find inspiring.
There was only one thing I wanted at all times, and insisted on: that you go ahead and talk in the most natural way, in your situations. Don't give me puns. Don't give me jokes. No wisecracks.
Life is too serious to do farce comedy.
- Buster Keaton
I'm not here to pass judgment on comedians, quick-witted, or fast-paced improv, one-liners that bring the house down. That would be like a painter that looked down on drawing, watercolors, and sculpting for not being painting.
Whether you are doing scenes or playing improv "games" you can tell a story. Honoring and holding to the truth of that world and characters can produce comedy, drama, and any nuance in between. I love the magic that comes from this kind of shared storytelling. In this style of the art of improvisation gagging - puns, jokes, and wisecracks just shatter the reality and kill the story. It's like throwing clay onto the canvas of the painter. (Mixed-medium artists - please forgive the analogy).
My favorite moments are the ones when the actors don't know the moments are funny until after they happen because they are simply doing the next obvious thing in their world.
What are your thoughts? Share them in a comment blow.