Elective: Open Your Mouth and Sing

‘You have to. If it scares you, do it because it scares you. If it doesn’t scare you, then you’re weird.’

A one day course for people who have said ‘I could never do musical improv’.

Heather and Joe will provide a supportive, joyous and safe environment for any age or ability to explore the world of improvising with music. We’ll cover a range of music styles, games and song structures. We’ll also look at taking improvised scenes into songs. Really useful for those who want to give it a go but need a safe environment to let their musical hair down. Also suitable for those who want a fun refresh and introduction to some new exercises.

‘It has a direct impact on my confidence on stage or at events – I now know that nothing can phase me. If I can make up a song on the spot about something I know nothing about it, what’s the worst that can happen when I’m presenting? Feels amazing having these skills in my toolbox.’

This class takes place on the 17th December from 11 am to 4 pm at the Nursery Training Centre, Capital House, 42 Weston Street, SE1 3QD and costs £40. The class size is limited to 16 spaces.  Please note that course fees are non-refundable when paid.

Book here! 

Teacher: Heather Urquhart

Heather is one of the country’s most prolific improvisers. She performs with Olivier Award-winning Showstopper! The Improvised Musical in the West End, has been a performer with and director of The Maydays for more than a decade, regularly plays in improv duo Ten Thousand Million Love Stories with Jules Munns, and guests with several other shows including Bumper Blyton: The Improvised Adventure and The Playground.

In this workshop we’ll be looking at how to create improvisation from different source material. Using techniques ranging from monologues to group games, and from both verbal and physical starting points, we’ll find the fun in moving from suggestion to scene, and from one scene to the next. We’ll be drawing from Chicago-style long form traditions but the workshop will be suitable for all levels and styles of improviser.

I loved the freedom of just opening my mouth and seeing what came out. The joy of feeling your way through the music and creating something in a supportive environment where randomness is welcomed. The incredible talent of Joe playing beautiful music to suit each scene perfectly. Heather’s ability to make us feel comfortable and relaxed enough to trust our instincts.’

Teacher: Joe Samuel

Joe Samuel is a classically trained pianist and violinist having studied music at Royal Holloway University of London.  He has been a professional musician for 15 years, playing in a variety of successful bands on both his electric violin and on keyboard.  He teaches piano, theory, harmony, composition and music technology ‘A’ level as well as teaching musical improvisation and comedy.  Joe Samuel has been the musical director of the long running sketch comedy show, ‘The Treason Show’ in Brighton for 6 years.  He is also the musical director of ‘The Maydays’ improvisation group as well as being guest musical director for a number of other improvisation projects in Brighton and London.  Joe’s interest in harmony and analysis has also led him to discovering a new way of teaching and understanding chords and harmony, and he now runs a project called SeeChord which helps students, teachers and songwriters hone their skills.  SeeChord.com is the hub of this project.

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