Updated: Jan 20, 2021
Imagine a black hole slowing sucking you in… With each second, you go further in, to the point where your reality becomes a broken chamber. Before I got involved with improv, I was getting torn to pieces by an internal black hole. The mere concept of getting out of bed was a colossal struggle. Then my professor gave my class notice that there would be an improv group called ComedySportz that would be coming to UNLV. I suddenly felt a desire to get out of bed as I hopped on a bus to join the immersive experience.
When I got there, I felt like the black hole starting to subside. The room was filled with so much positive energy. It started to ground me. I felt like I was finally home. In this room, the negative spirals in my mind didn’t seem as impossible to face. After seeing my first improv performance this group put on at the end of the three-day workshop, I wanted more! I discovered that when I was surrounded by improv, my mind would clear, as a flicker of light was brought to my life.
As I continued my semester, I learned how improv could fit into each of my areas of study. Eventually, my interests grew and I started getting fascinated by Cognitive Neuroscience. I wanted to unravel how improv could connect with cognition. When Robert invited me to take part in his i2ipd Zoom sessions, I was fascinated. Before starting, I had a general handle of the concept “YES, AND”. “Yes” accepts where you’re at, while “and” gives you the courage to take the next step. For me, “YES, AND” gave me motivation to fight for my life.
Prior to joining the i2ipd group, I understood that improv could instill a body-mind connection for different people and that focused movement could help with different health issues. HOWEVER, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. Upon taking part in the i2ipd sessions, I learned that improv techniques could help reset the cognitive state of a person and that mental blocks are okay.
There’s a term Robert encourages us with that goes "AHH-OOOO-GAAA!" This word accepts the individual blockages one may experience through group encouragement, which helps them move on! This concept projects “YES, AND” to our individual limitations and guides us towards possibility!
I am an Interdisciplinary Studies student. At the end of my degree plan, I will have a capstone project to complete about a specific topic that interests me. My goal is to delve deeper into how improvisation can impact the cognitive health of a person. I want to work in some of the labs at my school, so I can get hands-on exposure with learning how the brain functions. “YES, AND” is for everyone, and as I said YES to my curiousity, I allowed myself to journey towards possibility.
Where will your journey take you?