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by Darren Held

By Sonnjea Blackwell

I learned that if I don’t think and just open my mouth and let it all go, I’m loud enough and I hit the right notes and it sounds great and it doesn’t feel like work.

The problem is, I learned this last week at my voice lesson as well, and the week before, and the week before, ad nauseam. I learn it, and it’s like a big ol’ friggin’ lightbulb. Woo hoo! And then I forget. It’s like that movie Memento with the no-short-term-memory guy.

And the problem is, it’s the same with improv: If I don’t think and just open my mouth and let it all go, the information is great and the characters are strong and it’s funny and it doesn’t feel like work. I know this. To trot out another movie analogy, I’m like Natalie Portman in Black Swan, except not as crazy and not as pretty and not as lesbian. But I UNDERSTAND improv very well. I can analyze it with the best of them. I see quite easily what works and what doesn’t work in a scene, and why.

I’m the white swan – all technicality, no passion. But the thing with the number of improv classes and rehearsals and shows I do, is there’s always another chance to finally nail it. One of these days… Only you know what? I’m tired of waiting for one of these days. Tonight, at Held2gether’s Level 2 class, watch out. I’m done being Natalie Portman. Tonight, I’m Mila Kunis. (Yes, I know. I’m not as pretty. It’s an analogy, people. Sheesh.)

Darren Held
About Darren Held
Darren is the CEO and Creative Director of Held2gether, Improv for LIfe. He has been teaching and performing improv for 15 years, and has performed with H2g, the Groundlings, UCB and Second City. He loves Moto, red wine, and Madonna.

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