Remembering Characters

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When performing, one thing I always forget is that things always get more interesting with characters. I could go on stage and pretend to be another me, but sometimes I start to panic a little inside. I panic because I feel like my normal everyday reactions aren’t as good as I want them to be. I enjoy over the top cartoonish things and I enjoy the ridiculous, and that’s one of the things that I love about improv is that you can be any one of those in any given situation. But like I said, even though I can be another version of myself and just do things in the real, I feel like I panic a little bit.

What I love to do though is to remember to create a character on stage. Becoming someone else is liberating because someone else takes over the reins and you are just sitting back and watching everything happen. It’s so easy to let go when you’re in a character because everything suddenly becomes automatic; what to say, what to do, how to behave, how to physically move, it all just makes sense. Don’t get me wrong I’m not saying that behaving in the real is bad, not by any stretch of the imagination. I guess what I’m saying is when I run into trouble and fall back to my normal tendencies of being my regular self, one thing to help me get out of that is to create a character. I love seeing scenes in the real where there are just real reactions and real people, they are awesome and can lead to amazing scenes. If I suddenly find myself stuck, I just need to remember that by suddenly speaking in a different voice or creating a new physicality the reigns are taken from me and I can just sit back and watch it happen from the back of my brain. Because really I’m just lazy and this is definitely much easier to do. So I guess in conclusion, if you’re stuck and you can’t think in the moment in the real, put on the voice or creative physicality. Before you know it you’re sitting back and relaxing while the character does the work.

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On February 28, 2015

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