Sunday 3rd March – 6.00pm: Neil Curran: Neil + 1
Neil +1 is a unique improv show starring Neil Curran and a random audience member! Completely unplanned and improvised, an audience member is invited up on stage and becomes part of the show!.
Cast: Neil Curran.
Find out more about Neil Curran below . . .
Tell us about yourself
Neil has performed and taught improvisation for many years, having performed with Laughalot Improv; The Make-Up Artists; JC & The Apostles Of Improv and recently, Duty Free. (Who are also performing at Impro Fest UK.) Festival performances include Body & Soul Festival and TedFest. Neil has guest performed with Spontaneous Theatre People and Choke Comedy Improv. Neil is also one half of Chicken & Fox Productions.
How did you discover improvisation?
I was immersed in the theatre world from an early age and always had a particular fondness for improv. Then "Whose Line Is It Anyway?" hit the TV when I was a teenager and Ryan Stiles became my inspiration. I wanted to get up and do what he did! I tried to recreate the games with friends without having the slightest idea what Accepting or Blocking was!
I began formal improv training in my 20's and haven't looked back since. I quickly became an improv addict, workshopping as often as I could and performing whenever I could. It all paid off when I performed in front of my first paying audience with my first troupe, Improvlova in a bar called Cassidy's in Dublin. Cassidy's closed down not long after our show. The 2 events should not be linked!
What’s the most memorable improvisation you have seen or been part of in the last year?
The most memorable show I have seen was "TJ & Dave" last December in iO Chicago. Breathtaking improv! The most memorable show I was part of was in Dublin in the summer of '12 as part of "JC & The Apostles Of Improv". John Cremer of The Maydays was visiting Dublin so I performed in an all star show with John and performers from Spontaneous Theatre People and Choke Comedy Improv. Having a chance to perform with such talented improvisors on the one stage was a great buzz and some beautiful improv ensued! John has always been an inspiration to me having had the pleasure of attending a number of his workshops both in the UK and Ireland, so getting a chance to perform alongside him is a joy.
What are your top three impro tips?
1. Open your ears and trust both yourself and your co-performers.
2. Allow yourself to be changed. So many scenes with potential are ruined when performers either get stuck in a high status role and refuse to be changed or worse again, engage in a status battle with co-performers.
3. Enjoy yourself! If you are not enjoying it, you're doing it wrong! Improv should be an exhilarating , liberating experience that leaves you with a rush no matter how long you have been doing it!
Recommend a book on improvisation ...
There are so many good books out there and being forced to pick one is tough. However I will pick "Impro"by Keith Johnstone. I consider it my bible.
Write you own question on improvisation and give an answer ...
“What inspired you to create the "Neil+1" show?”
I believe everybody can be an improvisor. I had an idea about doing a show with a random audience member who has never done improv before, where I could test my own improv skills and also give a stranger the chance to be a star in the show so that they too could experience the buzz that we improvisors get! I also received great encouragement and coaching from Matt Holmes in Philadelphia, a guru in these formats.
It's an ultimate rush. There is no safety net. There is no way of predicting how the audience member will act! I find the format immensely challenging but the payoff is so worthwhile!