I'm at my house, and Adam, Bettina and I are really excited. We make sure we have everything we need. A water bottle, a few bananas in case we got hungry, house keys, and smiles on our faces. We all rode our bikes to the B'nai Aviv Hebrew school and we arrived about 5 minutes early. How's that for a good first impression?
Anyway the class was in this big room which was full of stuff, like clothes hangars and pillows and books and old electronic stuff. It was later revealed that there was going to be a garage sale, and for the time being they were storing all the stuff in this room. Well it got cleared up later, so that wasn't a problem anymore.
People started coming in. The teacher was a woman named Robin Braun. She was very nice. There were about 11 other kids besides my brother, sister and me. Me and my sister were without a doubt the oldest ones there, besides the teacher of course, and Adam was the youngest. There were only 3 boys, including Adam, in the whole group! And they seemed to be about 13 to 15 years old. Oh well, too young for me, but also taller than I'd expect! I have trouble guessing boy's ages. The tall ones seem younger than the short ones at times, it gets me so confused!
I was able to remember a lot of people's names afterwards, because the first Improv exercise that we did was called "The Name Game." To play, you think of an adjective that starts with the same letter as your name, then do a funny body movement that matches the adjective.
Starting with Robin, she said, "Hi! My name is Robot Robin!" and then she did a robotic gesture. Then there was "Energetic Eric!" who walked in place (but through the rest of the class he mostly just sat in his chair). After him was "Radical Rebecca", me ("Amazing Annette"), "Brilliant Bettina", "Addictive Adam", etc. We went all around the circle, and each time someone introduced themselves, we would say, "Hi..." whoever, and then repeat all the people who introduced themselves beforehand. It was a great memory game.
The rest of the Improv exercises were so much fun, and we covered a lot in only 2 hours. We had a game called The Blind Run, where a person in the middle of the circle closes their eyes and tries to run around, and any time he/she goes too close to the edge, the other people gently push the blind person around and make him/her run the other way. Everyone got a chance to be the Blind one. It was a little scary to run eyes closed, but it was also kinda fun!
We also did an exercise called Mirror Acting. We choose partners and either partner gets to lead the other to do anything that a reflection would do. It seems like a pretty common exercise among actors, but this is the first chance I've been able to do it. My partner was a girl named Gabby. She looked about 13 or 14, somewhere in the lower age range. We both ran out of ideas for what to do with our hands fairly quickly, and the rule was that we had to keep eye contact the whole time.
It was our first day. I'm pretty sure it will get easier and easier to do these exercises with more time to get to know my fellow Improv actors. Because this first experience was so enjoyable, I hope the rest of the classes will be just as good.
When it turned to 9:00, Robin said that it was time to go home, and she told us to give high fives to everyone and say "Great Job!" That was so much fun! The bike ride back home was very dark; the street lamps in our neighborhood mustn't have been working so well. Note to self: get some flash light attachments for our bikes for the weeks ahead. I am definitely going to be looking forward to these Improv classes now that I know what to expect.