2021 – the year to be excited about improv?
I’m bursting. You know when someone keeps filling a cup of coffee until it spills over, that’s how I’m feeling right now about improv. Like many of us, I need to get myself on a stage before I overflow (is this metaphor working?)
I’m writing this on the morning that the first person in the UK is being vaccinated against Covid-19. Just writing that fills me with hope. So much of who we are and what we do as human beings has been amended or put on hold entirely to protect us from a virus. Very few of us expected a global pandemic this year but it’s the hand we have been dealt.
I’m hoping 2021 deals us a much better hand. As vaccines get rolled out across the world, as treatments continue to improve and as scientists continue to get to know how the virus works even more, I am hopeful that we might get a sense of normality at some point next year.
I’m constantly having to balance my natural caution with my natural optimism. I’m not sure when we will be back in theatres improvising and then socialising afterwards like we used to but I am hopeful it will be at some point next year.
When we do come back, things won’t be exactly the same and that is good. Whenever someone has a period of reflection, they tend to learn things. I feel like we have all had a period of reflection and as the world has continued to turn, we have had a lot to think about as improvisers. How do we come back and make the global improv community a better, more equitable place to be?
I am hopeful but I am not complacent. As we build back in 2021 we have some incredible opportunities to create a future better than it would otherwise have been had the pandemic not happened. Let’s look for them. Let’s seize them. Let’s get excited about them. Let’s make our improv communities better, let’s give new life to our work and let’s engage new people like never before.
I might not be without caution about the future, but that doesn’t dampen my excitement. 2021 could be the year that lifts improv up in every way. I can’t wait for us all to play our part in that.