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Alex Brightman: Rock ‘n’ Roll With It

You know him, you love him, but did you know Alex Brightman gives huge credit to landing the role of Dewey Finn in School of Rock to improv? Yes, IMPROV. 

We talked with him earlier this week on the latest episode of The PlusCast (streaming now on Spotify and YouTube), where he shared with us the importance of improv on stage, in the audition room, and in everyday life!

Newsflash: we use improv everyday! No, but really! Every conversation in your life is improv. Weird to think about, right?! According to Alex, improv is about listening, NOT talking. If you’re going into improv with the intention of trying to be funny and only focusing on thinking of funny things to say…it will never work. The best improv is done by just listening and interacting with your scene partner(s). Don’t think so hard, just listen and respond – chances are people will laugh! 

Improv allows you to think on the fly and adapt quickly, which can be immensely helpful when walking into an audition room. When the casting director asks you to read a line differently or… I don’t know… maybe IMPROV AN ENTIRE SCENE (which literally happened to Alex), you will be prepared and feel comfortable to let your training take over. This doesn’t mean you have to join an improv troupe or anything like that, it can be as simple as practicing improvising a scene with your best friends.

They want to know YOU and what you bring, not only to the character, but to the production and rehearsal process as a whole! Are you the one that people are going to want to talk to at midnight during the longest tech rehearsals everrrr? The best auditions are the ones that show your truest self. Those auditions may not be where you feel like you’re the most talented or best one there, but they are the ones where you feel you’ve left it all on the table and presented yourself in the most authentic way.

Alex described auditions as a representation of the rehearsal room and who you will be in that space. Being confident in who you are, adapting quickly, and improvising every now and then can help you a long way both in the audition process and in everyday life. If you don’t believe us, Alex Brightman literally won over the audition panel (including the Andrew Lloyd Webber!!) by improvising an entire 11 page scene for School of Rock!!! Yeah, he’s that good at improv. 

Hear Alex talk more about that audition process, his dream role (it’s a GOOD ONE you’d never guess), what inspired him to get into theatre AND MORE on The PlusCast (listen to the 30-minute interview on our podcast or watch the 15-minute episode on our YouTube channel). 

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  1. Book a one-on-one coaching with the improv legend himself right HERE
  2. If you are looking for a rockin’ Improv Comedy lesson, look no further — book with the iconic comedian Julie Marchiano
  3. And since we’re on a roll, get tickets to and book an in-person experience with Freestyle Love Supreme to see stellar improv in action!