By Matt Fotis
Lengthy shape scenic improv started with the Harold. The comedian philosophy of this type all started an period of comedy marked by way of help, belief, and collaboration. This booklet tells of the Harold, starting with the advance of improv theatre, throughout the tensions and evolutions that resulted in its production at iO, and to its use in modern filmmaking.
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Additional resources for Long Form Improvisation and American Comedy: The Harold
He started raising the money, but the one thing he really needed was an agreement with the stagehands’ union. In order to keep costs down, Flicker was willing to “hire the stage-hands we needed but I couldn’t take all of those extra guys. ”38 With his theatre stalled, he decided to follow up on the phone calls that he was getting from his good friend, and Chicago Compass performer, Severn Darden. Flicker went to see the Chicago Compass perform and didn’t like a lot of what they were doing; he said, “But I saw great potential .
Louis Compass did nothing else, it would be notable for introducing Del Close. Flicker, along with Nichols and May, were instrumental in teaching Close how to improvise. A smile emerged on Flicker’s face as he recalled Close: “Oh Del. Del. Mad genius! He taught me how to eat fire. I taught him how to improvise . . He was damned good at it . . He was weird, but he was good weird; kooky at times, but it was always good because it was based in his reality. ”56 Close would take the training he received in St.
He wanted actors to comment on the social and political issues of the day. He wanted Chicago plays for Chicagoans. And he wanted them fast. The whole concept of scenario plays came about because Shepherd wanted plays faster than writers could write them. He did not know more than Before the Harold: How Did We Get Here? 35 ● anyone else what these new plays would look like, so he suggested that they just use outlines, and the scenario play was reborn. Shepherd approached numerous people and asked them to write a scenario play; Roger Bowen was among them.