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Liam Neeson Does Improv All Wrong

This clip from Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant’s Life’s Too Short, could suggest that Liam Neeson doesn’t know a thing about Improv. Or, just that Ricky and Steven are geniuses. You decide.

Either way, it’s a great excuse to remind everyone about Del Close‘s “Eleven Commandments” of Improv:

  1. You are all supporting actors.
  2. Always check your impulses.
  3. Never enter a scene unless you are NEEDED.
  4. Save your fellow actor, don’t worry about the piece.
  5. Your prime responsibility is to support.
  6. Work at the top of your brains at all times.
  7. Never underestimate or condescend to your audience.
  8. No jokes (unless it is tipped in front that it is a joke.)
  9. Trust… trust your fellow actors to support you; trust them to come through if you lay something heavy on them; trust yourself.
  10. Avoid judging what is going down except in terms of whether it needs help (either by entering or cutting), what can best follow, or how you can support it imaginatively if your support is called for.
  11. Listen