By Lucy Findley, Current Bovine Student & Intern
Easier said than done: this overused saying was running through my head before I pulled into the parking garage before my first Level 1 improv class at Bovine Metropolis Theater. I’ve wanted to do improv for years now, but I always managed to find an excuse to avoid signing up. What I didn’t realize then was that the timing was not the problem. I was the only thing holding myself back.
To throw in another overused saying― I am my own worst enemy. It really is true though. I know my potential, but I often shy away from pursuing my dreams because of own own self-consciousness. All of this changed the moment I decided to sign up for improv classes. Immediately after I signed up, I felt great knowing that I am finally doing something I truly want to do! Then, the day before class approached and I suddenly felt regretful and terrified for what this was going to look like. The unknown was laid out before me.
As I pulled into the parking lot, I thought to myself, “Why did I think I could do this?” Luckily, I didn’t have much time to talk myself out of this. I ran into the theater, out of breath and feeling a little faint, but underneath it all, excited. Doing something you’re not used to can be scary, but it can also be incredibly exciting. I decided at this moment that my nerves were simply excitement. After making this decision (that I was still convincing myself was true), I walked into my classroom with an orientation handbook already wrinkling between my clammy hands and a nervous smile stretched across my face. As soon as I sat down we were asked to stand up to begin getting to know one another though some introduction games. Immediately I thought, “Oh no, not this.” Flashbacks of unbearably awkward high school and college orientation icebreakers flooded into my head. But, as soon as we began, I realized something was different: I actually felt comfortable. I realized I felt comfortable because every single person in the room actually wanted to be here. No one was here to judge, and everyone was here to better themselves in their own way. Some wanted to get better at public speaking, others wanted to become better listeners and conversationalists. As I listened to the goals of each class member, I decided I wanted to incorporate each of their goals into mine as well.
We began introducing ourselves followed by an action that would be associated with our names for the entirety of the class. I was so focused on memorizing the names of my classmates, I forgot to think of what my action would be. Hesitantly, I chose to do the ‘Loser L’ on my forehead for ‘Lucy.’ If this would’ve happened in high school, I would have been branded as ‘Loser Lucy’ for the next four years. Instead at Bovine, my classmates simply laughed with me and chose not to degrade me for my hasty and unfortunate name association.
The class continued, and as it did, we all became more and more comfortable. We began to see the potential each of us had inside, and watched our confidence unfold.
People of all ages and different backgrounds came together and just realized we all want to get something out of this experience and most importantly, have fun. I never realized two and a half hours could fly by so quickly, or that I could enjoy myself the whole time. I already feel like the Bovine has begun to change me, or maybe just make me a better version of myself. Now, instead of thinking, ‘Why did I think I could do this?’ I’m wondering, ‘Why didn’t I do this earlier?’
I look forward to sharing my improv journey with you all through this student blog!
Lucy Findley is an intern at the Bovine Metropolis Theater. Blogging her experiences at the Bovine, from level one through graduation, Lucy hopes to give you a glimpse of what it is like to be a student of improvisation. Lucy is a senior at Regis studying English.
*Are YOU ready to leap into the unkonwn like Lucy? Click HERE to register for our next Level One class*