Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

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Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby TexasImprovMassacre » March 12th, 2013, 7:06 pm

Hello,

I will be teaching another 6 week Harold Intensive for $65.
It will be held on Thursdays from 6-8pm beginning April 4th (ending May 9th) .
The workshop will be held @ Messiah Lutheran Church (5701 Cameron Road, Austin, TX 78723)
12 Students Max.

If you would like to sign up, all you need to do is go here to pay to reserve a spot: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?c ... 8FDGA3W2AQ

This a chance for people to get a condensed version of ColdTowne's level 4 class on the harold for goofy-cheap.

It seems that when most people think of the Harold they think of the classic form from Chicago that follows an "Opening, 3 scenes, game..." structure.

Here is a lovely poster describing that structure.

Image

While that 3 scenes, game structure has the potential to produce some amazing shows, it is also common for the perceived rigidity of the structure to hinder some students' performances. It can sometimes lead to shows that seem to be lacking some creative spark/inspiration.

Instructors often note that executing the 3 scenes/game format "correctly" or "in order" does not ensure that your show will be good...and you don't HAVE to do 3 scenes game to do a good harold.

Though, it then can become difficult to distinguish something as a harold if it doesn't have that "3 scenes game" structure.

So, if it isn't the predetermined structure that's important, what is it about the harold that you're supposed to be learning?

It is my belief that when people are learning the harold they are not learning to "do a harold" (noun), but they are learning to play in the style of the harold or "to improvise haroldly" (adverb).

I have come to believe that the harold is more about learning a style of play than it is about learning an order of which scene should happen when; a style of play that encompasses wonderful things like unconditional and immediate support, building off what is already there rather than inventing, practicing intense listening skills, discovering on the fly what is unique and significant about the show in front of you and how to help it become more of what it already is...all this, and more!

Once improvisers free themselves from the constraints of the structure I feel that they begin creating harolds that each have their own unique and wonderful focuses. I also believe that these skills translate very well to all types of improv.

Here is one of my favorite quotes from Del Close about the harold:

“It’s the order that is imposed on it — nay, not imposed, discovered within it. There is no art without order. There is no art without structure. Art is not the moment of free expression — anybody can do that. That’s just masturbation and free association and therapeutic purging. There’s no art in that. Where the art comes in is in the control, in taking this material that could spew off in any direction and imposing on it, or discovering within it or revealing, the inner order of this seemingly random, disordered, or unordered behavior. I remember trying to get people to improvise something in a checkerboard pattern, and they’re like ‘What the fuck do you mean?’ It was clear to me. I think I could have done a light scene and then a dark scene and then an oblique scene that was neither light nor dark, but they were still hung up on some other level.”

Del Close in The Art of Madness (Langer, Adam), University of Chicago Press, p. 197


I think this is a good video example of 3033 from Chicago playing in this style.

http://vimeo.com/channels/3033improv/6580209

I'm excited to host a workshop towards creating harolds like this...in such a way that the improvisers discover and adopt a unique "form" or "focus" for each show they perform.

This class will be supplemented by emails every week containing further notes and video examples.



About Me: The Harold is by far my favorite level to teach at ColdTowne where I am currently lucky enough to be the Artistic Director as well as the Dean of the Conservatory.

I was also lucky enough to have studied the harold in its birthplace at IO Chicago. In addition to completing full programs at ColdTowne and IO chicago I have studied with instructors from the Second City, The Annoyance, UCB, The New Movement, The Hideout, and elsewhere...

If you have any questions about the workshop, please don't hesitate to email me at Cody@coldtownetheater.com.

Also, if you are interested in having me come coach your entire group on this subject rather than signing up for the workshop please just email me and let me know. I would be glad to set something up with you.

If you would like to sign up, please follow this link to pay to reserve your spot: https://www.paypal.com/cgi-bin/webscr?c ... 8FDGA3W2AQ

If money is an issue, or you can't swing it all at once, please just let me know and I can work something out with you.

Thank you
Last edited by TexasImprovMassacre on March 18th, 2013, 10:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby TexasImprovMassacre » March 17th, 2013, 4:42 pm

Now that the SXSW madness is ending I wanted to bump this workshop again.

Here's a short documentary about the harold from the 80's that is narrated by Dave Pasquesi.

There is some sweet footage of Del Close talking about the harold...and there's a sweet bonus clip at the end where we get to learn about Boloney's sandwich shop!

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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby scott.hearne » March 17th, 2013, 11:33 pm

I really enjoyed the first 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody. He teaches the Harold in an approachable way! Cody focuses on a using the format more as a style of play, rather than strict dogmatism.

Sign up!
"Great improvisers never look worried onstage. It's not that they became great and stopped worrying, they stopped worrying and then became great." - Miles Stroth
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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby TexasImprovMassacre » March 18th, 2013, 10:07 am

Thank you, Scott!
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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby thedward » March 19th, 2013, 2:00 pm

I am so there; just signed up.
Thedward Blevins <23@thedward.org>
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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby TexasImprovMassacre » March 19th, 2013, 3:10 pm

Thank you, thedward!
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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby TexasImprovMassacre » March 25th, 2013, 12:38 pm

Hey Y'all,

There are still some spots avaialble, and at least a week and a half left to sign up!

Here's another sweet show that builds and builds for those who might be interested but want further examples: Middle Aged Comeback - "Sleepover" - http://vimeo.com/8776227
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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby TexasImprovMassacre » April 1st, 2013, 8:37 pm

This workshop starts this week, and there are still a couple of spots left.

I'm very much looking to working with a sweet mix of people.

This will be the last one of these intensives I hold for at least a few months. So, sign up now, or you'll have to wait through the summer for the next one!
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Re: Another 6 Week Harold Intensive w/ Cody Dearing

Postby TexasImprovMassacre » April 4th, 2013, 1:16 pm

This class begins this evening, y'all!

There are still 2 spots left if anyone is waiting until the last minute to sign up!

Thank you.
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