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Improvisation | HowlRound Theatre Commons

Bíborka: Welcome to PUHA podcast, which stands for Performative Unity within the Hungarian Arts produced for HowlRound Theatre Commons, a free and open platform for theatremakers worldwide. We’re your hosts Zsófi and Bíborka.

Welcome everybody. This PUHA podcast will probably be about improvisation and yeah. Welcome to our friends. Welcome to our listeners. I am Biborka. There’s additionally Zsófi.

Zsófi: Hello, I am Zsófi.

Bíborka: And let’s begin by going round and introducing your self.

Ernő Zoltán Rubik: Okay, so my title is Ernő. I am a composer and improviser primarily based in music. So I realized music composition on the Liszt Ferenc Music Academy, and I play piano and objects. I take advantage of voice very often. I work in theatre reveals and generally motion pictures to create soundtrack, however the majority of my work is now round improvisation. And I am additionally extending all of it to the sector of dance. I really like to bounce, that is my ardour.

Zoltán Grecsó: My title is Zoltán Grecsó. I am a dance performer, and 13 years in the past I began to arrange an improvisation night. After which it is turned out to be a collective and now we, all along with sixteen dancers, we’re improvising lots. We’re organizing improvisation performances and we have now improvisation nights the place we… often, what our theme is that we have now no idea in any respect. I educate within the Hungarian Dance College and I’ve a whole lot of completely different initiatives as properly beside that. And I educate amateurs as properly.

Viola Levai: I am Viola Levai, and I completed on the Budapest Up to date Dance Academy. I work as a dancer—additionally in improvisation, additionally in concepted items—and I additionally educate dance. And I am additionally doing neighborhood issues which these are all related to bounce or primarily based on dance with musicians, with different type of collaborations.

Bíborka: I would love you all to offer a one sentence definition of improvisation. What’s improvisation?

Viola: Discover it time and again. And lose it time and again.

Ernő: Improvisation is the celebration of life.

Viola: Sure.

Zoltán: So my sentence is, “Simply do it and settle for it.”

Bíborka: Nice. Thanks. And now if you wish to say the way you discovered your approach to improvisation and the way do you’re employed with it now? Why is it essential to you? Is it essential to you? Perhaps it isn’t essential to you.

Zoltán: In dance schooling, there may be a whole lot of workout routines or instruments to develop your improvisation dance abilities. And naturally time and again we are able to apply all these workout routines and all these instruments to develop in a method of getting ourselves, getting our method of transferring and the best way how we obtain the informations about what we’re doing within the second. So, it is a long-term course of. In all probability it is a endless story. I can all the time discover one thing fascinating for me to acknowledge about myself and about the best way how I transfer.

Ernő: Yeah, I needed to say that the second sentence can be composing within the current second—for after my first sentence. However then, okay, how you can compose within the current second? For me, I prefer to be fairly acutely aware about this. So for me it is a acutely aware composition. And even when I take advantage of simply letting it go and I simply entered the move and let my physique transfer or I throw my mind away and simply act, that may be additionally a acutely aware determination. And possibly crucial component on this composition is listening. Sergio Murayama, who’s an improvising musician taking part in percussion and voice, and that his motto is listening first, then taking part in.

Viola: So I can also actually connect with a listening and there may be one other phrase, however I needed to say that… the acceptance. So by some means the way of thinking if you find yourself free to do issues however you’re acutely aware about these and you aren’t blocking your self. You let the physique and also you let the thoughts to react, however you’re there and conscious of what’s taking place, and you’re financial with something what occurs. And for me, it is onerous if something can occur. If I am simply within the house and there is no type of body—I can do this after all—however I actually just like the frames. I actually like if there are some frames which wakes up our curiosity or which makes a typical curiosity for the individuals on this house.

By means of our curiosity, we begin to analysis. I largely work with actions. I largely work with what the physique can do. However after all, the physique’s so related to the thoughts so that is additionally like, “Ah, how I am on this scenario, my physique can do that and that.” So after I expertise this, my thoughts can also be begin to open up and appears like, “Ah, I am so ready to take action many issues with this protected place.” For me, safeness implies that we have now a body, and we go into one thing collectively. Hear, join, and settle for.

Bíborka: And I feel it was you who talked about this primary, however then I feel Viola, you additionally mentioned one thing about frames and listening and my query can be how do you in your individual work make house for improvisation? What sort of frames do you give your self or to these you’re employed with?

Ernő: I am additionally just about interested by being as free as doable; giving no theme or as much less as wanted. I used to have a quintet with which we performed one thing like between free jazz and improvised music and there we talked lots about how you can give the minimal mandatory enter. And one instance is TÉRIDŐ JAM, the place we’re having quick items and earlier than every bit, we draw the variety of musicians, the variety of performers, their names, and the timeframe of the improvisation. Additionally, Viola talked to us about connecting with individuals. So already, the venue—so the house, the time, if it is night or morning—is already a fairly robust body. And the best way the occasion was introduced, so the expectation of the people who find themselves coming, it is already fairly robust and the individuals who participate.

Bíborka: Zoli, are you able to inform us about Willany Leó and if every other work of yours that you simply wish to point out?

Zoltán: I needed to say—and it is also a bit related to what Viola talked about—the body and this. So yeah, the body is extraordinarily essential and in addition if we talked about body we additionally might point out why we’re improvising. So, the content material, on this case, why we’re you improvising. Is it a apply of improvisation? Is it a efficiency? Is it a framed improvisation? Are we researching one thing? Can we wish to create? Are we use this as a device to create one thing? Will enable is that we wish to present the improvisation itself?

And naturally, there are frames, however the frames are in our minds. And my goal was, with Willany Leó, that we discover these instruments or the frames—what we’re following–throughout improvising in order that we conscious of what occurs or what is occurring in house. That we acknowledge these frames, and we acknowledge the instruments that we’re following. And we are able to join and be a part of and cut up. And we are able to all the time join and disconnect and obtain and alter. Willany Leó is a quite simple challenge. We’ve musicians and we have now dancers, and we’re creating the dance efficiency, and the one idea we have now, we are saying it—it is a humorous joke in a method. So, the one idea we have now, is that we have now no idea.

Ernő: What in regards to the titles? As a result of you could have some titles of the efficiency.

Zoltán: That is pretend. That is for the viewers.

Zsófi: Oh my God! I needed to ask the identical as a result of I all the time see the titles too. So it isn’t true?

Viola: It would not have an effect on the performers, that the great title is like this or that?

Zoltán: No, I imply I requested them to not. There was a time, there was a time—

Viola: Do not take into consideration elephant, don’t take into consideration elephant.

Zoltán: Yeah, precisely. Yeah. The pink elephant. In fourteen years, after all, we tried out many, many issues. There was a yr once we had frames. There was a yr the place we have been engaged on textual content after which we had the robust ideas after which titles after which we have been dramatizing concepts. The group, these sixteen dancers, they know one another very properly and yeah. I do not suppose that they learn the titles truthfully.

For me, safeness implies that we have now a body, and we go into one thing collectively. Hear, join, and settle for.

Bíborka: I simply additionally wish to have an opportunity to speak about Viola your work and in addition the classes you learn as a result of I really feel like you’re doing a whole lot of pedagogy and of instructing improvisation. So I might be curious: How do you educate improvisation? How do you create that type of an area the place it isn’t essentially performative?

Viola: Yeah, this was in my thoughts once we speak about framing—that a number of completely different frames are doable. And I feel in instructing or for amateurs, it is a completely one other type of body what I take advantage of with my colleagues once we use improvisation. I do improv classes. It is an open improvisation class in Budapest, however I additionally do improvisation like… I’ve improvisation classes like Oxygen Ceremony or Surprise Surprise Ceremony. And I convey it to festivals. However these are ceremonies.

Bíborka: What does imply? The ceremony.

Viola: There may be an order in what we do. In Oxygen Ceremony, we work in a circle, and we work with the oxygen, and actions, stuff.

Zoltán: Can I simply point out one thing? All this challenge has such an exquisite title, like Oxygen Undertaking and Time and Area. So it is so beautiful. I simply talked about, I am not used to listen to such good names.

Viola: Yeah, thanks. Yeah, these are for festivals. Or you’ll be able to invite Oxygen Ceremony to your marriage ceremony.

Bíborka: And the way did you provide you with these ceremonies?

Viola: With my classmates. I wish to point out that for me, improvisation and this type of stuff, I feel what I educate in my improv courses are… it is coming from the college. As a result of within the faculty, we had these occasions once we might simply go into the dance studios, and we might analysis subjects. We made a course of to enter it after which we simply watched what got here out. I feel I largely work with the motion talents of the physique.

So, I’ve very primary concepts, like how can we slide on the ground? Instance. And I give frames for it like: “We’re stepping into strains and let’s simply observe how your little finger can slide on the ground. After which how the fingers can slide on the ground, after which how the entire arm can slide on the ground.” And it provides 1000’s of variations for the motion and after some time, you give increasingly issues. Like, “Okay now we have now the sliding, so then give the pushing or give the pulling.” And we tried with completely different type of physique elements like with the top or with the nostril. So that you come to a scenario the place you begin to use your physique in a method the place you did not use it but. These are actions. These are actions—

Ernő: Breaking the patterns.

Viola: Yeah. Breaking the patterns or for the improv courses, a number of individuals coming who usually are not doing dance in any respect. So they do not actually have patterns. However they—

Ernő: I imply on a regular basis life patterns.

Viola: Yeah, they’re popping out of on a regular basis life patterns, such as you often seize with the hand and drink with the mouth. And right here you are able to do such as you seize together with your mouth and drink with the fingers. As a result of in regular life, you recognize are a lady or a person. You’re working right here, it’s important to act like this, you do not sit there, you communicate like this. However on improv courses, you recognize are doing… the issues have gotten completely the other way up and this provides a freedom for the thoughts. Some very fascinating new actions can come for the contributors and a few new method of being.

Zsófi: So how do you prepare for improvised performances?

Viola: With professionals, you do not simply care about your self, you additionally care about what’s popping out. So that you attempt to bear in mind that what you’re making is just not actually like how does it seems to be like, however what’s it? Since you wish to share it with individuals. You aren’t simply doing it for your self.

Zoltán: I needed to attach very a lot what Viola simply mentioned earlier than. In order that once we educate amateurs, I feel is what we educate is extra a unique perspective, that we’re…. In fact, I am in a human physique and I understand how I stroll, and it is tremendous pure for me to stroll. After which what we’re doing is we’re asking the individuals to cease for a second and begin to observe it from the very starting. Wish to marvel on it, that you’ll be able to stroll and the way you are doing. Which muscle get in rigidity that you simply chill out? How is your weight? The way you connect with the ground? How does it really feel that you simply’re standing on the ground, that it helps you? How your knee or how your ankle joint is functioning. And the way your hip and the way the middle of the pelvic flooring is in connection together with your prime of your head. Or your seat bone is connection together with your heel whereas stroll.

I imply, on a regular basis life it is fully regular. I am going to the shop. Am I in a position to go to the shop or how my physique balancing itself continually? So what we’re instructing via improvisation is to marvel that we’re a human being; that we’re current and this physique has sure performance. I feel we precisely educate… the improvisation instructing might be began if you find yourself a child within the kindergarten, and this referred to as in Hungary like “artistic youngsters dance.” I simply began to play piano so I realized… I do know that C main, I would like to make use of three fingers and I push this down. And I’ve to apply this to push these three keys right down to get this sound. And naturally, an improvisation artist would not suppose anymore about which three finger, simply performs it naturally. It comes.

However the apply of improvisation… so, what I feel is most people thinks, “Oh improvisation. All people is aware of improvisation. You need not apply this.” No, it’s important to apply lots. You need to apply continually. One in all my college students, she has reminiscence drawback. She will’t actually keep in mind in regards to the choreographies fairly properly. So she’s observing lots and due to… I additionally studied within the post-Soviet faculty system, so I assumed it is an issue that she would not know the choreographies. So I used to inform her that she has to study them. And I used to be watching her improvising Wednesday and I acknowledged how higher is she than anyone has on this room. In my style, in my understanding of improvisation, she’s simply so fascinating. I am unable to watch anyone else.

After which I acknowledge that she continually is aware of the individuals in house in order that she’s sensing all people continually as a result of she has reminiscence issues, so she’s continually copying individuals and she or he on a regular basis is aware of the place to look and whom to search for these info whom she wants. So she’s tremendous delicate continually on all people in house. And due to this fact, she is composing extraordinarily sensitively and she or he’s swapping from one individual to the opposite super-fast. So human mind is a really humorous factor. You aren’t in a position to not study one thing in the event you do one thing.

So improvising, it’s important to apply this sensitivity that what is occurring round you, what is occurring in you, it’s important to be very delicate on this. As a result of, after all, what occurs more often than not, for instance within the dance college, that I inform to individuals to improvise after which they provide me variation. However variation is just not improvisation. If you happen to do tombée pas-de-bourrée or pas-de-bourrée tombée, you’ll be able to select to resolve to make sure actions that you’ve got realized and repeat them in numerous order. However then, in all probability are you not connecting to your self, and you aren’t marveling in your human existence.

Bíborka: Yeah. I’m questioning what was as a result of I’ve so many issues in thoughts from what you are saying. And this will probably be a very naive query, however since you’re employed with people who find themselves not essentially dancers—like, you additionally work with dancers—however what… if for somebody who’s not an expert dancer, what is the level of getting good at it? As a result of, Zoli you talked about, it is like yeah you apply, it’s important to apply and also you get so delicate however what is that this good for in life?

Viola: For them?

Bíborka: For anybody. For individuals. Like, what is the level?

Viola: You need to ask them. I do not know what’s their level. I feel they simply have enjoyable, and so they prefer to study issues. I feel what you realized on the improvisation class, you can too use it in different duties in your life. So I feel what your mind realized or your physique realized, you’re simply ready to make use of it anytime in any scenario with any drawback. However principally, what I see is that it is enjoyable for them. However I’ve to say that I am not simply doing this as a result of generally I say to the category that it isn’t nearly having enjoyable. So, it’s kind of… it isn’t sufficient for me to make a category to have enjoyable. Okay, it is a factor that you’re having enjoyable however we’re additionally studying so many issues like this, what Zoli simply talked about, that how you can be delicate to ourself and to one another. And how you can be acutely aware. And we study a whole lot of issues, and it isn’t really easy for the contributors all the time to participate as a result of they must do issues in a method what they don’t seem to be often doing.

So it’s, after all, they don’t seem to be combating for it, however they’re working for it. If we aren’t studying, then we’re all the time simply within the patterns, what we all know, these actions, and it may be very boring. So, yeah, studying is just not all the time enjoyable, even when it is an improv and enjoyable class. Yeah. And I all the time inform to them that—generally they are saying on the feedbacking half that, “Ah, I did not have a lot enjoyable right this moment.” And I all the time say that, “Why is it an issue?” However you study one thing, you skilled that one thing was onerous for you otherwise you did not really feel good in a scenario and it’s important to come out from it or take care of it and it is a so essential factor in improvisation. It isn’t nearly feeling good.

Yeah, trainer of mindset that permission is crucial device that improvisation provides you. It is like upon getting curiosity and you’ve got a drive, it is the permission that is the device that is probably the most mandatory; to offer your self permission.

Ernő: There’s an important theme, is the query of authenticity. And for me, it goes again possibly to the purpose round 2007. I began working for theatre as a composer however then additionally little bit as a performer too. It was with Krétakör firm and with Árpád Schilling, so it was a fortunate begin. And I keep in mind him speaking about this and this turned essential for me. The overall method to the stage, that the perfect is to take a look at somebody who’s being herself. And since then, I actually skilled this from completely different angles. So I did some genuine motion coaching and that was additionally essential from this side. So simply, what does it imply to look at somebody and the way is it being watched? Yeah, it means lots to me that this gesture of permitting different individuals to look at you or that different method round. If I am within the viewers and I have a look at somebody and I really feel that this man would not wish to faux something, being sincere, it is such a gift.

So it is also, for me, one of many foundations of one of many basic items within the improvised efficiency is to search out this floor stage. In a method you can additionally put it like nothing has to occur as a result of I am not right here to entertain you. I am right here to share my being and play—which does not imply, as you all mentioned, it can not, would not solely imply having enjoyable. However play might be very honest, so play together with your honest and true presence. And this implies, additionally for instance, in a case the place you do not really feel your self good, it will possibly occur simply. Yeah, we have now completely different methods however one of many good methods I discovered is enable myself to really feel this disturbing feeling in the course of the efficiency and act or do one thing with it.

In one of many concert events, we have been taking part in in a small cafe and I went away for a couple of minutes to have a stroll on the street whereas others continued taking part in. After which I got here again, and I could not actually proceed however I felt actually caught. And so I did one thing to shift the scenario or put this sense—feed it again to the entire course of as an alternative of retaining it for myself. It may be very helpful for us to speak about what methods and instruments we have now in creating this type of performances or processes. I lately launched a apply group and it is a new factor. Typically, we do not have a lot time after a efficiency. We simply go and drink a beer. However for me, it is essential to essentially share our instruments. These type of frames that you simply make up for your self, as Zoli mentioned, it fascinates me lots that what is feasible and the way every individual offers with this problem.

Bíborka: Yeah, I like how each you and Zoli talked about this—that it is a talent, it is a apply that you have to often do. And I actually love that about improvisation, that it is so easy and but it is extremely deep. I additionally needed to ask if you wish to speak possibly extra about the way you realized this. Was this a part of any type of coaching of a college that you simply went to? Viola, you talked about that in your faculty you probably did a whole lot of analysis like that, however the place did you study this? How did you are available in contact with improv for the primary time?

Viola: I had a number of improvisation class and the concepts, or some curiosity, got here from the academics, principally. So I had courses with Adrienn Hód, Tamás Bakó, Marcio, and Csaba Molnár and Éva Karcag. So the curiosity got here from them largely. So I feel you want one thing which wakes up your curiosity. However after the college I additionally had different pursuits like the character or a scenario in a celebration. However within the faculty, I had realized this mindset—or it construct into my thoughts to this—that you simply observe one thing, and also you observe that it will possibly go deeper and open up. So that you change into about this and that is why you begin to analysis it. I feel curiosity is the principle level, the place you change into interested by one thing and that is the purpose the place you’ll be able to go into one thing. In case you are not , then it is onerous.

Ernő: Yeah, that is additionally one of many instruments you should use in an improvisation additionally. You are within the house and spot your pursuits after which comply with it.

Bíborka: Yeah, trainer of mindset that permission is crucial device that improvisation provides you. It is like upon getting curiosity and you’ve got a drive, it is the permission that is the device that is probably the most mandatory; to offer your self permission. As a result of a whole lot of issues is already there. So I do not know, I identical to to consider it.

Zoltán: Me too. And I additionally prefer to suppose prefer it’s a meditation. So it is similar to meditation within the sense that whereas I am meditating and observing how I am respiration, how the biomechanical points are of my respiration. So is my stomach or my chest which get lifted? And I additionally observe my emotions in my chest, so I am related. And it is also what you simply talked about, like: Why is it fascinating for somebody who’s a recognized dancer or who’s novice that observing my emotions is that I am connecting to myself so I am not disassociating from my physique? And on this case, whereas meditating, you observe your ideas and also you acknowledge that they’re simply ideas. And whereas transferring, you even have ideas, you could have emotions, and also you breathe, and also you additionally observe. So on this case, it is prefer it opens a brand new universe. You additionally observe the intelligence of your physique.

So, meditation is observing your respiration, your emotions, and your ideas. And improvisation motion is observe your physique intelligence and your respiration, and your ideas, and your emotions. And what Ernő talked about is genuine sides of your self, which is tremendous tough, as you simply talked about as properly. What’s my genuine? After I’m genuine? And the way I am genuine? What’s my motivation to something? These questions are tremendous essential in case you are a human to search out out your wheels, to search out out your motivations, to learn how you’re on this planet as a human being. In fact, what would I say? However in my method of understanding this world and this society, this might be crucial factor to show to individuals. Like, this marvel factor, like do not suppose that what’s round us is simply fully regular. And go deeper in observing your self. And attempt to perceive the system behind.

Zsófi: That is a very stunning type of ending, what you simply mentioned. I feel that each one of what you guys mentioned was actually inspiring, and I even made some notes of the attractive phrases. So if anybody has some ending remarks or one thing you wish to possibly add or ask one another, now can be a superb time.

Zoltán: I’ll order to my marriage; I’ll invite Viola. I wish to have Oxygen remedy.

Viola: Oxygen Ceremony. Yeah, I’ll go—

Zoltán: Oxygen Ceremony.

Viola: I am gonna do it! I simply needed to only line what you mentioned that by some means you requested the individuals all over the world that please… I am unable to repeat what you simply mentioned. Simply that one thing like, “Please go behind and do not take all the things as a pure factor round you.” And I feel yeah, we have now to…. In myself, I noticed that I’ve to search out place on the earth for my job as a result of in some conditions, it’s totally humorous that I am going to a room, and I improvise. Or I do that. I do not planting timber, I am not saving the chook or saving the bears or is there a waste or I do not know.

In fact, I do strive this stuff, however my job is that I do improvisation and I educate this and conduct after which carry out. However I feel this is essential and that is how we are able to put the significance of our work into the globality. Our process is not only to do issues like save the character however it’s additionally saving us with connect with ourself and observe these connections that how all people and all the things is related via improvisation. The way you begin to dig in your self, that is helps in the entire world. To be a greater individual, it helps to the entire world.

Ernő: Yeah. I even have one thing essential so as to add, however you’ll be able to lower out if it is an excessive amount of. So yeah, we have not talked an excessive amount of about freedom but, which can also be an important half for me. And my fellow improviser colleague in music, George Sőrés advised me about this anarchist thinker, I am unable to keep in mind the title, however we are able to put it within the description, possibly, if we discover it. And he talks about momentary autonomous zones. And George defined to me that for him, this type of improvised music conferences or improvised performances are momentary autonomous zones in a method that no person will inform you what to do on this body of a efficiency live performance.

So yeah, it’s going to authentically form due to the contributors and the viewers. However no person tells you what to do and there aren’t any guidelines. It is a actually special day and if individuals perceive it, additionally they might be fairly engaged in the event that they perceive that in each second you’ll be able to have a unique determination. So they begin pondering in your house. If they’ve this empathy, they’ll pay attention a artistic method as a result of they’ll think about one other, “Ah, this might be a superb second for the piano to start out taking part in or this might be a superb second to any person make a soar.” And that is when the viewers will get actually robust within the listening and we type of form it collectively.

I feel that is additionally excellent for the world if we are able to share this freedom of creation on this protected house created by the body of the occasion. And one other factor simply actually shortly: additionally, actual life advantages of studying improvisation. It was a thoughts changer for me. A recreation changer. No matter. After I realized the contact improvisation and any person advised me that if it is improvisation, so that you all the time must have a plan B. So you can not rely on the opposite one which he’ll catch me as a result of there aren’t any guidelines like this. Okay, so possibly he would not need, or he can not or one thing else occurs. So in the event you throw your self, you all the time must have a plan B, the way you land on the bottom possibly. And this for me actually blew my thoughts that it is actually like, “Oh, that is contact soar and it is one thing just like the analogy for the life itself.”

Bíborka: This has been one other episode of the PUHA podcast. We’re your hosts, Bíborka and Zsófi. This podcast is produced as a contribution to HowlRound Theatre Commons. You could find extra episodes of this collection and different HowlRound podcasts in our feed on iTunes, Google Podcasts, Spotify, and wherever you discover your podcasts. Make sure to search HowlRound Theatre Commons podcasts and subscribe to obtain new episodes.

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