meisner technique for improvisers
Sanford Meisner was an actor and acting teacher at The Neighborhood Playhouse in New York who developed his own style of teaching known as The Meisner Technique. Over the years he worked with a diverse range of actors and directors including Sydney Pollack, David Mamet, Alec Baldwin, Tina Fey, Gregory Peck and more.
From all the techniques in “serious” acting we’ve found The Meisner technique the most helpful for improv, and it was also the most popular topic at our online drop-ins, so we’ve developed this mini-course for improvisers who are keen to know more.
Meisner technique helps create a strong emotional connection between you and your scene partner, as you find everything you need is with the other person.
Through repetition exercises you gain an increased awareness of the emotional and physical offers from your scene partner, and the liberating ability to spontaneously act on impulse with pure honesty.
Living truthfully under imaginary circumstances.
Using Meisner in improv means there is no longer a gap between what the improviser is thinking and what the character is thinking, and all thoughts, feelings and impulses are put into the scene there and then.
It’s liberating to say what we see, what we think, and what we feel in the present moment without filter and turn these into intense and fun scenes.
We’ll be looking at Meisner concepts like living truthfully under imaginary circumstances, repetition, emotional calls, pinch ouch, specific activities and emotional preparation to bring scenes to life.
dates, time, location
Every Wednesday for 4 weeks from Wednesday 23rd November 2022. BOOK
Time: 7pm – 9pm.
Teacher: Steve Roe.
Venue: St Hugh’s Hall, Crosby Row, London Bridge, SE1 3PT.
Tube: London Bridge.
Only suitable for people with previous improv experience of our Level 2 course or above.
teacher Steve Roe
Steve Roe is the Director and Co-founder of Hoopla and has been teaching improv for over 14 years.
Steve creates a friendly, fun & supportive atmosphere in workshops where people are free to play and be themselves.
Steve has experience of teaching beginners, experienced improvisers, stand ups, drama school students and professional actors.
He has also taught improv at East 15 Drama School, Imperial College London and Oxford University, and to various corporate clients including Accenture, Google, Facebook, Comedy Central, Apple, BBC and ITV.
In 2010 Steve founded the UK’s first ever improvised comedy club at The Miller in London Bridge, helping to create a vibrant community of performers and audience.
Hoopla’s Improv Comedy Club was recently recommended by Time Out, The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, The Guardian, The Evening Standard and The Londonist.
Steve has studied improv with Keith Johnstone, Charna Halpern from IO, Patti Styles from Improv Melbourne, Shawn Kinley from Loose Moose, The Annoyance, The Upright Citizens Brigade, Fooling with Jonathan Kay and Clown with Mick Barnfather. He has also studied Meisner with Salon Collective, City Lit, Act Up and Actor’s Temple.
Steve regularly hosts Hoopla’s nights at The Miller, as well as performing, producing and directing various groups across the London improv scene. Steve also produces and directs Hoopla’s house team programme.
He continues to support countless other shows that have popped up from Hoopla workshops and is influential in growing the UK’s improv scene.
What comes after this course?
We have a variety of other advanced courses that would be suitable, the Truth in Comedy course is probably the most closely related.
Who is this suitable for?
People with previous improv experience who want to learn and experiment with the mesiner tecnhique and apply it to improv. You don't need previous meisner experience, we'll cover that in the course.
How much improv or acting should I have done before doing this course?
At least our level 2 course or similar. This course is not suitable for people new to improv.
What’s the class size?
Average of 14.