MA Advanced Theatre Practice Host Improbable on 23 July

Advanced Theatre Practice

Tuesday, 21 July 2015

'The International Institute of Improvisation – What Could it Be and What Should it Do?'

On Thursday 23 July, MA Advanced Theatre Practice is delighted to host Improbable in part of their Devoted & Disgruntled programme of Open Spaces: ‘The International Institute of Improvisation – What Could it Be and What Should it Do?’.

Improbable is a theatre company led by Artistic Directors Phelim McDermott and Lee Simpson and formed in 1996.  Throughout that time Improbable have made a large body of work.  Although this work has been diverse in nature, there has been a through line of improvisational practice.  Perhaps the thing that ties all of Improbable’s shows together is an intention to focus on what’s really happening in the moment – their shows are live events encouraging conversation between performers and the audience.  Improbable have performed all over the world: in the Sydney Opera House, on the steps of the Sydney Opera House, at the National Theatre, the Royal Court, ENO, the Metropolitan Opera in New York, the Barbican, the South Bank, Camden People’s Theatre, as well as in Syria and Quebec. 

Improbable have been running Open Space events under the banner of Devoted & Disgruntled since 2006.  Artistic Director Phelim McDermott says, “Devoted and Disgruntled was born out of frustration.  I was frustrated both with theatre and with myself.  I knew things could be better in theatre and I also knew the way I responded to that situation could be more creative.  I wanted to stop moaning and actually do something about it.  The Devoted & Disgruntled events and the community that has developed around them involve people taking responsibility for making better theatre and making theatre better. “

The Open Space event is being hosted by Central’s MA Advanced Theatre Practice, a prestigious and well-established course for those wishing to play a leading role in tomorrow’s new performance and theatre-making worlds.  Students are invited to be part of a selected group wanting to pool their resources and imagine the theatre of the future.  As participants, they work in an innovative collaborative laboratory, sharing a passion for company work and practical experiment, and ready to challenge and extend specialist practice with others.

‘The International Institute of Improvisation – What Could it Be and What Should it Do’ will take place from 11.00 – 19.00 on Thursday 23 July, 2015 in Central’s New Studio.  The event is free, and tickets are available through the Devoted & Disgruntled website.


An invitation from Improbable

Improbable make theatre, so we reckon we're pretty good at telling a story. But there's one story that we've never told that well: it's the story about Improbable’s relationship to improvisation and the intimate connection between our impro work and the other things we do which get credited as "proper theatre".

Finally Improbable have a big, bold idea that we think can tell that story better: 

The International Institute of Improvisation - the iii!

This idea needs your voice and your opinions. We can’t do this on our own. There’s no point in us doing it on our own. This is an International Institute. It’s for the world. Whatever your interest in Improvisation is or whatever form your improvisation practice takes you can help us build this vision... For the full invitation and details, please visit the Devoted & Disgruntled website.

This event is part of Improbable’s “Devoted & Disgruntled” programme of Open Spaces. Open Space Technology (OST) is a form developed to support groups to self-organise and collaborate around any question of shared concern. It gives all participants the chance to propose a starting point for discussion, take part in any of the conversations or flit between them all.

Devoted & Disgruntled was born out of frustration.  I was frustrated both with theatre and with myself.  I knew things could be better in theatre and I also knew the way I responded to that situation could be more creative.  I wanted to stop moaning and actually do something about it.  The Devoted & Disgruntled events and the community that has developed around them involve people taking responsibility for making better theatre and making theatre better.

Phelim McDermott, Artistic Director of Improbable