The intensive will introduce the principles of theatrical
and comedic improvisation by use of group exercises, scene study, and theater
games. Students will be led through the
fundamentals of teamwork, listening skills, character, environment, and
relationship development and will be encouraged to find their own unique voice
as a performer and person. In this
respectful and relaxed environment, students’ creativity and confidence will be
expanded and nourished.
ColdTowne Conservatory is run by the members of ColdTowne, a
long-form improv group formed in 2005 in New Orleans.
After Hurricane Katrina, ColdTowne relocated to Austin,
where it has since established itself as one of the hardest-working improv
groups in the country, performing at festivals nationwide and garnering Best
Improv Group honors in the Austin Chronicle's 2006 Readers Poll, Best Comedy
Group in the 2007 Readers Poll and Best Improvisational Ensemble at the 2007 B.
Iden Payne awards. In addition to ColdTowne Conservatory, which offers
multilevel courses of study in improv, sketch, and standup comedy, the group
also owns and operates ColdTowne Theater, which showcases live comedy three
nights a week.
Long-form improvisation is uniquely suited to the interests
and aspirations of young actors. Unlike short-form (the game-heavy format
featured on "Whose Line Is It Anyway?"), long-form focuses on
ensemble playing, grounded scenework, and the creation of a thematically
unified piece of comic theater, resulting in a much richer experience for both
players and audience. A performance typically involves two to ten performers
working from an audience suggestion to create a series of interconnected
scenes. The end result might be multiple interconnected storylines or a
collection of scenarios linked more by theme than narrative. The possibilities
are endless in that all the material is completely improvised on the spot,
reflecting the strengths and preferences of the players involved.