IMAGINATION BOOTCAMP: An interview with Mischief Theatre's Katie-Ann McDonagh

If you are applying to drama schools, an actor/director feeling (we’ve all felt it) the dreaded “stuck in your head” and limited in your scope of choices we have available at the tip of our fingers or feeling a little stagnant in performances and wanting to find that aliveness and bravery. Then Katie-Ann’s room of embracing failure as a break through, a Barry’s Bootcamp workout for the imagination and developing an openness and bravery through an ensemble-is-the-most-important-thing-everrrrr 5-week course of “Improvisation in the Rehearsal Room” is the room to get yourself into.

I met up with Katie-Ann (Resident Director ‪@bankrobberyplayWest End and Associate Director on UK Tour ‪@mischiefcomedyfor the Comedy About A Bank Robbery) to find out more about her journey into theatre/improvisation, the improvisation technique, how we can use it in different areas of rehearsal, script development and character, and how to embrace failure and find freedom within that.

Q. When did you first discover improvisation and make it an integral part of how you work?

In Irish theatre, there is so much about the writer and how painstaking it is to write. How much they have to pour their soul in to it – creating something seemed a long and arduous process. There is a lot of merit in that but when I went to university, I ended up attending improvisation classes where I saw people were making amazing things in a split second. I was just marveling at how much these people were working together and coming up with things at the top of their head. But also, how completely uninhibited they were as performers.

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