Thursday, December 26, 2013

All I Want for Christmas

An improv show is one of the easiest kinds of productions to put on because all you really need is a stage, a couple of willing, able actors, and an audience.

There is no set as such. I always tell my actors to create their set as they enter a scene. In other words, let the audience see where you are - if you're in a kitchen, start cooking or opening drawers or something. If you're in a bathroom, make yourself up in front of the mirror. And so on.

All I require is that the stage have two chairs Upstage Center. "Use these chairs if you need them," I say. If your scene finds you in a restaurant, or a car, or in a job interview, they could come in handy.

Today is December 26, and I am tidying up the stuff around the home. It overwhelms me. It never seems to end. We humans accumulate more and more. And nowhere is this more evident than at Christmastime, when we stress ourselves by giving and receiving the token gift.

This Christmas, it struck me more than in other years, that I do not get excited about "stuff". The best scenes in life are like good improv. You don't need a lavish set, costumes and all the "stuff". What makes a great improv scene is the content. The funny. The hidden meaning. The unknown ending. Not too different from life.

This Christmas I want to say to my friends and family, please don't give me "stuff". I don't need more stuff. Stuff collects dust, and will only stay behind after I'm gone, leaving someone else a lot of work to go through.

Give me you. Give me your original lines, your funny, your ear to listen, your observations to inspire and motivate me and keep me going. Give me memories to make me laugh and smile and want to see you again and again. Give me you. And two chairs.

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