Improv comedy and theatre are part of mainstream entertainment these days, but the first time I ever saw an example of it, it knocked my socks off and blew me away. When I came to my senses (and put my socks back on), I realized that I had stumbled across something of immense value in teaching – not just teaching English, teaching anything.
It was a visit to the Comedy Store in Central London that changed everything for me. Situated between Piccadilly Circus and Leicester Square, the Comedy Store has shows every night. On Wednesdays and Sundays, the actor-improvisers of the Comedy Store Players take the stage.
I first went there in about 1990. The English Teaching Theatre had recently employed an actor-musician called Richard Vranch, who is also one of the Comedy Store Players. I wanted to see what he did in his other life.
Richard is an extraordinary…
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