What is the Character-Based Improvisation Process?
Improvisation (CBI) Process begins with the director working directly
with the actor, one-on-one, to create a character.
There is no script,
and the focus is on the whole character: where they grew up, what their
parents are like, etc, etc – and moves through all aspects of the
Discussions with the director, research by the actor
and a great many improvisations enable both to construct a detailed
There is no script and seemingly there is no emphasis on drama for its own sake – though all the elements of future dramatic development are being sown into the character’s very being. Initially, each actor works separately with the director so that the integrity of their character is not affected by knowledge of other characters: this ‘secrecy’ becomes another tool in the construction of character – and is a very effective acting aid.
Because of the way the improvisations are structured, the actor’s understanding of the character – and the character’s emotions – becomes really strong. All the while the process is drawing from ‘lived reality’ – life as it is observed to be.
Character Based Improvisation
As developed by Mike Leigh
A five-day workshop
for filmmakers, actors and drama practitioners
Zagreb, Croatia, 19.10. - 23.10. 2018