So, Haley’s Games has these awesome murder mystery dinner party comedy games that thrive and succeed on the joy of flying by the seat of your pants, your love of seeing where a road takes you, your love of using your imagination and your love of a good belly laugh at your expense.
Another name for it: improv.
It is such a natural high, getting into a soap opera like character that has ‘permission’ to be naughty, to flirt, to be outrageous. Playing with the audience in that character and seeing the realization dawn that they can play along too.
Sounds like fun right? It IS!!!
Here are five elements of improv that give improvisers like us the life skills they can use everyday (by ImprovBoston’s National Touring Company Director Deana Criess)
They apply to the murder mystery dinner show too.
Say “Yes” no matter what
“Yes and…” What do you want to add to the scene?
“YES, I see why you feel that, AND l feel that way too sometimes, like when I accidentally took mom’s wallet….” Now you are in a truly collaborative conversation. The “and” gives you ownership.
Support each other
As improvisers, our job is to make our scene partner look good. The funniest scenes come from this simple principle. We serve the ensemble. The ensemble serves the show. And the show serves us in return. If my partner has an idea on stage, I support it and know that if I have an idea, it will be supported right back. In business and in relationships, we often get hung up on owning ideas or competing internally. Everyone will get farther faster if we all agree that a rising tide lifts all boats. The team’s success is everyone’s success, on stage, in business, and in relationships.
Make a choice
Make a choice. Any choice. Take that risk. In improv as in life, be the person who gets things moving. You can always make a new choice later – in fact, great scenes are simply a series of committed choices and discoveries. When we refuse to make choices, it’s often out of fear or the paralysis of too many options. Understanding that any choice can lead us to connection and collaboration, we open up our creativity. The more choices we make, the more discoveries we enjoy and the more momentum we build. Be the person with momentum.
In improvisation, failure is our friend. Fear is our only enemy. … Some of the best moments on stage happen when we step out of our comfort zones. … Fear of messing up leads to stagnation and closes us off from creativity. Some of the biggest innovations in history have come from “failures.” Penicillin, the microwave, Velcro, and the Slinky all were born of “failed” experiments.
Failure is simply another step to success.