Improvisational Acting (IPV)

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Definition & General Rules:

Each contestant will draw three situations and choose one. The other two are returned to the judge/topic pool. Time starts after the contestant selects his/her scenario. The contestant will have a total of seven minutes to use for preparation and delivery of a scene. The scene may be humorous or dramatic in nature and may be delivered as a monologue or as a dialogue between multiple characters. The scene should be organized with a clear development of plot, including a clear opening and closing. Movement and blocking should be appropriately utilized in the creative expression of plot and/or character. The judge in the room will conduct the drawing and keep time.

Judging Considerations: (adapted from The National Forensic League) The Improvisational Acting presentation should be regarded as an original interpretation by the speaker of the designated topic as supported by creative expression and gives a contestant opportunity to be creative and imaginative. An improvisational acting presentation should reveal the student's ability to develop character and plot in a creative and deliberate manner.

The contestant should be held accountable for strict adherence to the topic drawn and discounted severely for shifting to some other topic on which s/he might prefer to speak. The character(s) and dramatic elements presented should be well-chosen, pertinent, and sufficient to support the central thought of the topic, with particular emphasis on plot and dramatic/comedic development.

Delivery should be free from marked defects in the mechanics of speech -- poise, quality and use of voice, enunciation, fluency, bodily expressiveness -- and should be effective in enlisting and holding the interest of the audience. The best improvisational acting presentation combines creativity of thought, expressive portrayal of character, and insightful development of plot with respect to the subject chosen. Notes are not permitted.

Time constraints: 7 minutes with a 30 second grace period. Penalties for “excessive” over-undertime are at the discretion of the judge.

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