I know .. there are loads of ways to introduce yourself when a new group first gets together. And there are loads of ways to start a rehearsal with a group of people not used to working with each other. This is one of my favourites and it rarely fails to get everyone in good humour and out of their respective shells so you can start to work on other, more testing activities! The photo is actually a photo taken at the beginning of a rehearsal for Beauty & the Beast and shows the cast enjoying this very game.
So .. to start off – get your cast or group in one of those nice circles that we like so much! Seriously, a circle is essential – we can all see each other and that’s really important.
Now, the idea is to go round the circle and everyone will introduce themselves in turn. Make the introductions a little unusual, theatrical maybe, quiet or loud – each one different. At the same time each person will create an action to go with their introduction. Nothing too elaborate (somebody always does a complicated dance move – you’ll se why that might be a problem in a moment), keep it simple.
So each person tells the rest of the group who they are in their own unique way. As soon as they finish (it really should be very short) the rest of the group copies them exactly. So, in unison .. as a group .. immediately afterwards the whole group repeats the words and copies the actions. Easy! As long as there aren’t complicated dance moves – but if there are just have a go!
When you’ve be round once and everyone gets the idea, go round again. This time you can get your group doing something different. Maybe they’ll use lines from a play you’re rehearsing, maybe they’ll say something more about themselves, or about someone else in the group. Each time they accompany what they say with an action and each time the rest of the group will copy exactly.
It’s a versatile format and you can use it whenever you want your group to come together and be aware of each other. It helps to get people talking and moving in front of each other without being too exposed for too long. It’s a great ice-breaker. There are more complex variations of this game as well. I’ll get them down soonish, but meanwhile imagination should serve you well!