20 episódios

“Talking Shop: An Improv Podcast” features in-depth conversations about the craft of performing comedy hosted by Pittsburgh improv teacher, coach and performer Brian Gray. brianmgray.com/podcast

Talking Shop: An Improv Podcast with Brian Gray Brian Gray

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“Talking Shop: An Improv Podcast” features in-depth conversations about the craft of performing comedy hosted by Pittsburgh improv teacher, coach and performer Brian Gray. brianmgray.com/podcast

    019 - The Bristol Improv Theater - On community focus, improv as a process, and balancing strong offers with discovery

    019 - The Bristol Improv Theater - On community focus, improv as a process, and balancing strong offers with discovery

    An interview on the craft of comedy with the directors of the Bristol Improv Theatre (BIT), soon to be the UK’s first improv theater! On this episode, I speak with Andy Yeoh, the Theatre Director of the BIT and Caitlin Campbell, the Assistant Theatre Director of the BIT who are also instructors with the BIT theatre school, performers on the BIT house company, Degrees of Error, and two of the sweetest human beings. We discuss the BIT’s focus on building community (and the general “skillshare” culture in the British improv scene), BIT’s course structure and teaching approach derived from viewing improv as a process, their personal scenework approach to balancing strong offers with emotional discoveries, and the challenges of buying real estate in the UK. To contribute to their fundraising campaign, navigate to: buildthebit.com. Recorded in studio in Pittsburgh and Bristol, UK. For past episodes, visit http://brianmgray.com/podcast. Music in the podcast: Talking Shop Theme by Michelle Horsley Kick Shock by Kevin MacLeod Last Days of Disco by Fhernando

    • 1h 8 min
    018 - Megan Gray - On her confidence journey, gender and all women improv spaces, and positive notes

    018 - Megan Gray - On her confidence journey, gender and all women improv spaces, and positive notes

    An interview on the craft of comedy with the Artistic Director of the Magnet Theater in New York City, member of the Magnet resident team Junior Varsity, producer of the monthly all female improv show “We Might Just Kiss” and level one teacher Megan Gray. The Magnet is an open and welcome community where they believe they can teach anyone to improvise, and Megan embodies that philosophy. Megan and I discuss her journey to become more confident on stage, the differences between mixed-gender teams and teams with only women, how she gives positive and supportive notes, and so much more! Note: you can overhear lively Magnet classes throughout much of the episode–apologies if this is bothersome. Recorded at the Magnet Training Center in New York City. For past episodes, visit http://brianmgray.com/podcast. More info on the Magnet Theater at http://www.magnettheater.com.

    • 1h 5 min
    017 - Kevin McDonald on the Kids in the Hall Writing Process, Dynamics of the Writers' Room and the Confidence of Experience

    017 - Kevin McDonald on the Kids in the Hall Writing Process, Dynamics of the Writers' Room and the Confidence of Experience

    Interview with comedian, actor, voice artist and co-founder of the edgy, dark and surreal sketch comedy troupe Kids in the Hall, Kevin McDonald on his creative process.

    • 57 min
    016 - Matt Holmes - On Improvising with Non-Improvisers and his 3 Simple Steps

    016 - Matt Holmes - On Improvising with Non-Improvisers and his 3 Simple Steps

    Matt Holmes is a 15+ year improv veteran, co-founder of renowned Philadelphia improv team Rare Bird Show, and creator of Matt &, a show in which he improvises a 20- to 45-minute long form set with an audience member who has never done improv before. The show has enthralled me every time I've seen it, enough that I helped bring him to Pittsburgh and enjoyed lots of shop talk at my kitchen table. It took a few months to get him on the show. Matt and I talk about the fascinating strategy he has to prepare to improvise with non-improvisers, his 3 simple rules to fun improv, and the big ideas that are occupying his mind right now. Find more about Matt at http://www.mattandimprov.com.

    • 1h 7 min
    015 - Susan Messing - On Doing What the F*ck She Wants and the Annoyance Philosophy

    015 - Susan Messing - On Doing What the F*ck She Wants and the Annoyance Philosophy

    At the Detroit Improv Festival, I felt so lucky to grab a few minutes of time with 30+ year improv veteran, founding member of the Annoyance Theater, performer and teacher at iO and Second City, the ever-inspiring Susan Messing. We chat about the three different institutions Susan performs at, dive deeper on the Susan Messing quotes that have had a big impact on me, and what gets her off on stage. We didn't have time for a set, but we did get to record in front of a moped gang! So enjoy the street noises!

    • 33 min
    014 - Kevin Mullaney - On Clear Games and Using Both Organic and Premise-Based Styles

    014 - Kevin Mullaney - On Clear Games and Using Both Organic and Premise-Based Styles

    At Improv Wins in Austin, I also caught up with Artistic Director for the Chicago Improv Festival. Artistic Director for Under The Gun Theater and former head of the training program and Artistic Director of the UCB Theater Kevin Mullaney. Brian and Kevin talk about how, since moving back to Chicago, Kevin has come to admire premise-based improv and teach it as a core way to approach scenes, particularly later in Harold. He talks about his view of games and turning an unusual moment into a game (and how they are not the same thing). We played a few scenes, focusing on using edits to heighten character's game from the previous scene. It went ok and led to a fantastic discussion! Thanks to The New Movement for letting us record in their classroom! Music in the podcast: Talking Shop Theme by Michelle Horsley Kick Shock by Kevin MacLeod Last Days of Disco by Fhernando

    • 1h 3 min

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