I've been taking improv classes with Automatic Improv, a talented group of performers that work out of Relapse Theater in Atlanta. (My Level 3 class graduation show is tonight.) And I wanted to share these videos with everyone, not just my fellow students, for two reasons.
First, improv has been a lot of fun while learning to better myself. It teaches you to think on your feet, listen better and improve your public speaking skills. I've also met some incredible people through this last eight months. And any time you get the chance to surround yourself with interesting, hilarious, creative people in this life, you should do it.
Second, this video shows you the basics. In it, improviser/actor/writer/director J.D. Walsh works with high school kids learning improv techniques. It's a good introduction - or reminder for those of us studying - to the ideas behind the art form. The concepts are what you rely on as an improviser and they are, inevitably, ones will tend to forget occasionally.
No need to watch all 38 minutes of videos if you don't want - Walsh covers all of the basics in the first ten minutes. But it is interesting to see how he works with and develops these kids as new players.
BTW: I looked up J.D. Walsh because he created a great series on Hulu called Battleground. I can suggest watching it, especially if you like TV series like The West Wing or The Good Wife.