Stephen Davidson is the Artistic Director of Improvable, QI: Queer Improv, Carmen: A gender-swapped Film Noir Fantasy, Love and Misinformation: An Improvised Play in the style of Caryl Churchill, and of Zeal: The Pride Improv Festival. He currently also plays in The Nursery Theatre’s mainstage ensemble, and in duo The Happiest People in the World with Erick Castellan. Stephen teaches improv through Improvable and the Nursery Theatre, with the Free London Improv Project, and is also a diversity officer for Hoopla Improv. He has taught and performed all over the world, and is the author of two books about improv: Play Like an Ally, and Improvising Gender.
The World’s Hardest Improv Games
Duration: 3 hours
Times: Friday Morning
The more experienced we get, the harder it is to fail joyfully. This class will include a selection of improv games and warmups both learned and of my own creation, taught in stages from easy to impossible. Newer improvisers will have a delightful time learning new games and being playful, and experienced improvisers will find the challenges they need to experience a little brain meltdown.
Play Like an Ally
Duration: 5 hours
Times: Saturday All Day
Maximum Participants: 16
Are you looking to increase diversity in your group, theatre, or improv scene? This workshop will focus on practical steps you can take as a player, teacher, and director to make sure everybody feels welcome. Improv can stagnate without diversity because it becomes predictable; turn on your awareness and let this art form continue to surprise and delight you. This workshop will develop awareness of what players need, and what they’re offering. We’ll play through a balanced warmup designed to make sure everybody starts on the same page, and talk about how (and if) to modify for people who have disabilities or are neuro-diverse. We’ll work on supporting different types of initiations and offers, players with different styles, diverse points of view, stage time, and amplifying less heard voices. We'll talk about how to navigate scenes with potentially problematic behaviour, and steps you can take to ensure your team, school, and community is a safe space.
Characters You’re Not Allowed to Play
Duration: 5 hours
Times: Wednesday All Day
Part of the joy of improv is the freedom to play any character, but we sometimes shy away from characters who are very different from ourselves. Choosing a character from a different cultural background, a different race, a different gender, or who has a disability can feel very uncomfortable for some people. We're scared of causing offence, of getting it wrong, of misrepresenting a viewpoint or experience that is not our own. If we never try, though, we miss out on a rich pool of characters, and we might never see some of these lives onstage. Worse, we let our fear dictate our art. This workshop focuses on strategies for playing any character in an honest and heartfelt way, and on broadening our own knowledge of different human experiences.