The weather closed in this morning and the rain came down. It may not have inspired me to go out, but it did provide some form of inspiration.
Ten Improvised Characters
With the world a little topsy-turvey right now, I find myself missing so many of my usual performing activities. I especially miss my chance to gather with others to play, Improv style.
With that in mind, I decided to try out an improv activity without an audience to give me feedback. I give you the result (transitions edited for time):
I’d love to see or read about your characters, improvised or otherwise!
A little ditty inspired by my nieces.
Miss Hannah, in particular, has been missing chatting, singing and spending time with her Aunty. Today’s creation was inspired by songs I often sing with the kids.
Enjoy, and do let me know what music you are inspired by during this “Interesting Time”.
The Plight of the Performing Artist
With our current situation meaning theatres and other performance spaces are closed, and even outdoor events are banned, the life of a performer can be tough. Still, the dedicated performer will always find a way!
Friday Flashback – Clown and Out
Every year, RMIT Performing Arts Club hold their annual Fringe Festival show, “Snatches”. This collection of short pieces written and performed by a selection of students and other affiliates encourages emerging artists and crew to try their hand in a friendly and supportive environment.
Today I want to share a piece I had the honour of performing in for the 2018 show – “Clown and Out” by Felix MacFarlane.
Musical Improv for COVID 19
It’s a tough time at the moment, but everyone is trying to keep connected any way they can. Here is a little musical improv Inwas playing with earlier. (Inspired by my “Cool Teacher” teammate Mary Ann)
I’d love to hear your ideas for further verses!
Character Creation – Inspired by Caspar
Today’s character was inspired by the suggestion given by Caspar, a lovely friend I have had the joy of working with in University Theatre productions.
Caspar’s suggestion words: “cuddly” and “creative”.
“Ah, good day there youngster! I’m William Willikers. You can call me Old Bill if you like – all me good mates do!
“I’ve been out back in me shed a bit lately – you’ve probably noticed, observant fellow that you are. I’ve been working on a special project for the little tackers across the way. Holidays coming soon, they could do with a little joy in life, eh? I figure since I’ve got none of me own, I might as well make all the little tackers in town a little something. Dry and dusty place like this, they could use a bit of colour around, don’t ya think?
“I was thinking about that old paddock at the end of Johnsons Lane. Needs a little more clearing, but me and me old mates can handle that lickety split. I’m thinking billy cart races, matey! Five to a race, all different colours, with shining horns, and flags to wave. It’s gonna be a beaut! Those little tackers won’t know what hit ‘em!“
Thanks for the suggestion words, Caspar! This generous old Aussie bloke was a fun voice to put in my head!
Character Creation – Inspired by Alissa
Today I take my character inspiration from another chorister, Alissa. The provided words were “Butterfly” and “sings”. I
“Greetings! I am the magnificent Margaret Maria Monteo! I’m sure you’ve noticed my shawl, dear. How could you not? It is so beautiful! Just like me. Oh! He he! No, seriously dear, it was given to me by the maestro to celebrate the end of my operatic run throughout Europe. So colourful! So pretty! … The shawl, dear, not the continent. It reminds me of a Spring garden in bloom.
“Oh, I do so love the Spring, dear. The turning from drear and gray to the colourful explosion that heralds in the warmth of Summer.
“Ah, warmth! You don’t know what warm is until you’ve curled up with someone by an open fire in the middle of a Russian Winter. Of course, that does have more to do with the person you choose than the fire. Wink wink, nudge nudge, hey dear?
“Do you know, I’m considering returning to the stage, sweetie? Of course you do! Everyone wants to see my return, of course!
“Can’t you just see it now? Me, triumphantly strutting onto the Opera House stage, the crowd roaring their admiration, rising to their feet in respect and awe. Then all falls silent. The conductor raises his baton, I open my mouth and… Ah! The wonder it would be!”
I do hope you have enjoyed meeting Margaret!
Thanks for the inspiration words, Alissa!
Character Creation – inspired by Celia
Today’s character is based on prompt words supplied by an old choir friend, Celia. She gave me the wonderful gems “subterranean” and “hungry”
“Heh. Yeh, I’m Spry Foxx. I lives down yonder, in the dark parts of town. I makes me living scavenging through the discards of the upitty’s. What they throws away would amaze yeh. Perfectly good stuffs. I furnished me home with their discards. I eat what them as wouldn’t touch. Sometimes I finds something and fixes it up some, then I can sell it to some uppity who thinks it’s sommat more than it was. Fools, all of them! Could have had it for nought if they was clever like me.
“The small ones laughs at me. Heh. Say I’m old and slow, thinks I’m stupid. The small ones mock me, pretend to hunch and shuffle about, then points at me and laughs. I don’t let them bother me none, though. They “lose” things all the time, don’t they? Never think old Spry might haves things. They will grow as stupid as the big uppity’s. Old Spry Foxx is cleverer than them and always will be.”
Thanks for the inspiration, Celia! I found Spry a fun one to imagine. I think he’s an interesting little fringe-dweller, and I hope you do, too.
Character Creation – Inspired by Ani
I recently asked my friends and family on Facebook to supply me with two words that I can use to inspire my writing. The first to reply was my good friend Ani. Here is what her suggestion inspired:
Suggestion words Koala and Choir. (I chose to pick a single facet of Koala, Climber.)
”Hi there, I’m Susy Jamison Tyne. I love people and going new places. I sing a lot. I do love to sing with others, but I also love getting to the top of a mountain hike and just letting it all go, singing out over the foothills and valleys below. It is an exhilarating experience!
“Speaking of exhilarating experiences, just last week I helped my soccer team win their final against the Roosters. We Tigers are officially the best again this year. I do love the competitive part of playing, but after the game I love heading out to dinner with the team. I’m even happy to mix it with the opposition once the game is done. On the field, though, it’s all or nothing. I play in defence, naturally, and love seeing the fear in opponents eyes as I charge towards them to claim the ball. I never show fear – fear is what gets you hurt. Fear is for the enemy. I mean, they are definitely my enemy on the field.
“I‘m still a student, studying exercise physiology. I really appreciate learning the variety of ways the body works and how to make it more efficient. Class is fine, but I really excel at assignments. Like on the sports field, I won’t show weakness. I aim high and always succeed in my assessment tasks. Outside of class I participate in as many extracurriculars as I can. Performing Arts, Sports clubs, Dance Sessions, I’m there. I actually work part time for the sports coordinators at uni, coordinating practice and trial sessions, chatting about Sport at exhibition days, even umpiring. I love the challenge and can’t wait to finish studying and take all this skill and experience out into the wider world. I am going to be the best I can be, and I will never just accept defeat!
“I hope everyone has a super amazing day! Be the best you there is and enjoy your challenges. You are amazing. We are all amazing.“
Thanks for the inspiration, Ani! (You can find Ani and her own creative endeavours on Twitter @nystimus)