Moving Improv Back Indoors

I’ve been coaching an Austin Improv troupe weekly. I absolutely love getting to do this with them. We started last year on Zoom and this summer when Austin’s COVID Stage dropped to Level 2, we started getting together weekly in-person in a room in a big house with a pool.

The first thing we worked on was physicality because, well, in ZoomProv that seems to get lost in the translation. When I was talking with Asaf Ronen earlier this year, that was the first class I hoped he would teach with us and he will! And being in-person with this troupe was a complete and total blast.

When things started to move back into Stage 4 then 5, the troupe took into consideration the fact that I am old and have some higher risk factors. First, we all masked up, then we moved outside. The next thing I know, they’re all in the pool so they’re not getting bit by mosquitoes. I am in a chair on the side of the pool covered in bug spray with floodlights coaching them well after the sun sets each week.

Every time I think about the transition to outside and how much they wanted to keep going in-person, I just smile. Teaching and rehearsing Improv brings me joy, just like it does for so many of you. I love that my decade-plus of experience is not going to waste.

I am invested in helping them be better performers. They’re getting more tools in their tool belts, they’re becoming more courageous with each other, and they’re committing more to the offer in front of them. They’re killing it!

Every week I get told by a different one of them, how much they look forward to our Wednesday night rehearsals. Every week, I walk away looking forward to the next Wednesday night Improv in the Pool.

As Merlin Works moves back to in-person classes, everyone is telling me how much they are wanting in-person classes, the students and teachers. And we are, but as we do, we will follow our guidelines to reduce the spread of this wave of COVID.

As this wave starts to wane, PoolProv will move back into mosquito-free, air-conditioned spaces. We can always go back outside if need be.

And at Merlin Works, we get emails and calls every day telling us how much they need to be with other people, wanting to learn to make up something from nothing. We hear you. Classes start in October and we can’t wait to see you there, having fun and laughing together, well after the sun sets.


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