One of the valuable directions from Del Close was a simple perspective on what is fundamental to any improviser’s craft:  “It’s just you with funny hats and glasses.”  The sense of being yourself on stage – no matter how crazy it gets in the improv – creates a base of reality from which the wacky choices can come. The audience craves that sense of honesty and if you don’t give it The to ‘em you’re gonna lose ‘em. In fact, you could argue that the more outrageous the behavior on stage becomes, the more important it is to play from a reality that is solid and that the audience can connect to.

First time I heard it, I knew that was an important direction. But, until I started working with the various groups we’ve served at Laughter for a Change, I never knew how profound that “hats and glasses” thing truly was. The work we do as improvisers, mentoring kids, working with vets, creating comedy in Rwanda or China, whether there’s actual funny hats and glasses, or whether that phrase is just a metaphor for the character traits you throw on for comic flair, the message is the same: Improv, done well, allows you to be yourself and to discover your authentic voice. “It’s just you with funny hats and glasses.” Thanks, Del!

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a simple perspective on what is fundamental to any improviser’s craft: “It’s just you with funny hats and glasses.” The sense of being yourself on stage – no matter how crazy it gets in the improv – creates a base of reality from which the wacky choices can come. The audience craves that sense of honesty and if you don’t give it to ‘em you’re gonna lose ‘em. In fact, you could argue that the more outrageous the behavior on stage becomes, the more important it is to play from a reality that is solid and that the audience can connect to.First time I heard it, I knew that was an important direction. But, until I started working with the various groups we’ve served at Laughter for a Change, I never knew how profound that “hats and glasses” thing truly was. The work we do as improvisers, mentoring kids, working with vets, creating comedy in Rwanda or China, whether there’s actual funny hats and glasses, or whether that phrase is just a metaphor for the character traits you throw on for comic flair, the message is the same: Improv, done well, allows you to be yourself and to discover your authentic voice. “It’s just you with funny hats and glasses.” Thanks, Del!

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DEL CLOSE IN A FUNNY HAT AND GLASSES