All posts by justine

Life as a Nomadic Fool.

The Nomadic Academy’s Joanne Tremarco recently offered some words to improvfest about being part of The Nomadic Academy for Fools..

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Tell us about your group.

NAF makes its base wherever it goes. Introducing audiences to their own fool’s. Connecting the inner and outer worlds.

NAF does group shows (The Penis Monologues, Richard II), Street theatre (The Fig Leaf Wars), Character duo’s (Mr & Mrs Mutton), solo shows, (Women Who Wank, 21st Century Troubadour).

NAF also manages Spilsby Theatre (a converted Court House), Linconshire.

To improvise, the Fool journeys from the audience, through front of the stage (where stand up lives), through middle of the stage (where plays live), into the world of influence at the back of the stage and back again to sit the audience.

What was the best piece of advice on improvisation you’ve ever been given?

“Always begin again, start with the audience, Movement first” (Jonathan Kay)

 What is your favourite improvisation exercise and why?

Jonathan Kay’s: Twin Exercise

You follow your self on an inner world journey, looking and seeing, becoming what you see and flying with it. It’s mad and wonderful to be in a room full of people moving around as they take on whatever their minds present them with. It’s really liberating for The Fool to be the other side of the judgement that says, I’m not creative or I’m not doing that, that’s crazy. No matter how dry or uncreative I have felt … when I become involved in this exercise I am always surprised by what I discover. I wouldn’t recommend trying this at home mind you. We spend so much of our day held in the norms of social conduct – in the place where ThinKing rules. Its difficult to get past the ThinKIng with out being executed for treason. So when one finally does sneak under his radar and get into the realm where you can move freely, its nice to know that there is someone there to call you back into the room when its time.

What’s your pre-show ritual/warm-up?

I see my playful, able self move from my minds eye, into the space.

I step into this part of me that wants to play and begin to move in whatever ways come into my body, use my voice in whatever ways I want.

I skip through lots of different characteristics and movements moving around the stage slowly at hte back and speeding up at the front.

I look at where the audience will be an I get excited about meeting them.

Recommend a book on improvisation …

Never read any.

Anything else you’d like to add about your show, your group, or improvisation or the world in general … 

I’d like to spend longer living in The World, I have to keep reminding myself that a place called The World where we all can meet may indeed exist, most of the time i spend wrapped up in my own weeny world. Know the feeling?

Original source from: http://www.improfestuk.co.uk/2014/the-nomadic-academy-for-fools.html

You can follow Joanne and Women Who Wank on twitter – @WomenWhoWank

The work of a Fool

Some words from Jonathan Kay.

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“I have been invited to put into words something of the work I do as a professional Fool.

What is a Fool? A Fool sits next to the elephant in the room, both being something hidden in plain sight. It’s very nature is to sit with one foot in the blind spot, the other in knowledge.

So how is it possible to shine a light on the Fool?  Imagine the scarlet pimpernel: you may meet him or her but not know it. As a professional fool I arrive in a performance, I interact with audiences who will be warmly invited to join the fun and to laugh and share. There is often laughter, sometimes tears, but always resulting in togetherness, in being relaxed, talking and playing.  The audience is brought together through the experience… but can anybody be a Fool?  Yes! Anyone is a Fool and can realize something by acting the Fool…

In our society Fool is a derogatory term:

‘I felt such a Fool ‘

‘That was Foolish’

‘I was a fool to do that’

‘I don’t talk with Fools’

‘A fool and his money are soon parted’

‘Fools rush in where Angels fear to tread’,etc.

I play a 21st Century Fool, turning these phrases into praises not derision. I give these remarks charm and insight which normally damn the Fool in everyday language.

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In the Tarot, the Fool card gives you a better insight, a beginning of your own journey towards the center of a circle that has no circumference.

The Fool in its proper place plays visible in an invisible world… And visa versa. The Fool is mysterious,it is playful, and talks easily with the high powered. It is seen walking over a cliff with a carefree air as if to know something others would be fearful of.  The Fool is love in action – it has no fear since there is none in love, which is something I and everyone else can aspire to. It is something we all inherit in ourselves and twist and turn from to allow fear to guide us and to hide us – to protect us from love’s truth.

To be a Fool is to see that there are fearful lower loves, as in jealousy hate joy anger peace, etc. These are different, defensive loves – all loves with twists. It is the fear of jumping, risking all to be love in action that is seen as extremely foolish.  Yet there is great merit and hope in this to live well, to encourage others to be love in action to see the world within ourselves reflected by the imprint we make on each others lives and in nature to see whether we make a good imprint with our footsteps through the world.

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So leap as a Fool over the lesser loves and fly over the cliffs of defense and fall into understanding of the greater love. To have trust and no fear and to remember not to create the fear that makes the rocks of disaster upon which we dread to fall beneath us. Do not test the water…know them, for what shall we do? …why do we  hide our abilities away and turn from ourselves? …  when we knew that with trust all is possible, and we can look to others and say I’m-possible. Begin …when we have not risked anything we feel empty. Be a Fool to search love in action.

I have found it difficult to put words where you can put love into actions. I am on this discovery too – the Fool is a great opener for the discovery of self. See if you can speak out and follow.

I hold workshops in Fooling.  Being a Fool is a lifetime quest. Whatever you have been in life it’s never too late to understand and embody the worlds of the Fool.

See you soon. Don’t wait for permission – you could wait too long.