Shakespeare, Unscripted opens this Saturday!

2 04 2015

I got a hold of some of the most delightful improvisers in the Atlanta area and then I made them hang out with me for two months straight–watching, reading, playing, and studying Shakespeare.  These people are smart, funny, and good.  And so is this show.

Shakespeare_info-IG

Shakespeare, Unscripted is a fully improvised play in the style of William Shakespeare.  We run Saturdays at 8pm in April and May.  Please get your tickets here!

Hie thee to Highwire!

The Cast:  Ian Covell, Kelley Lockman, Madison Rigger-Hatfield, Andy Bliss, Ian Custar, Sarah Zureick-Brown, Kris Purushothaman, David Wappel, and Amanda Rountree





Actor’s Worst Nightmare

5 03 2015

I’m in this new show, and I’d love for you to see it!

One improviser. Two actors doing different plays. Three fascinating acts.


You don’t know your lines. Or you do, but everyone else seems to be doing a different play. It’s the Actor’s Worst Nightmare.

Two actors performing from different plays and one improviser take the stage. It’s up to the three of them to make sense of the mess. Watch actors from the Robert Mello Studio and Highwire Comedy Co.’s top improvisers squirm in the face of The Actor’s Worst Nightmare.

ActorsWorst_info-IG





Where You Were and Where You Are

3 03 2015

chocolate-birthday-cakeAs one gets older, it is widely believed that one gets accustomed to getting older. I suppose that’s true to an extent. A small extent. For getting older is not the same as riding a bike or learning another such skill. Every time you get older, you’re in new territory. Every time you have a birthday, you’re turning an age you’ve never been before. Every single time.

It’s sort of exciting, really. It’s always new. Life is the great improvisation. And it’s always spontaneous. We can fool ourselves a bit with routines and patterns. But we’re just fooling ourselves. We never truly know what’s going to happen next or how things are going to pan out. Life is just one surprise after another—some good; some bad.  Occasionally, we make plans and what we think/hope will happen, does.  More often though, our plans are rejected by Life and both far worse or far better can happen.  We simply learn as we go and do the best we can.

I’ve been really lucky. I was born into a loving family; I’ve encountered some of the most supportive, fun, caring, wonderful people in all of the places I’ve lived and visited; and so far, I’ve enjoyed some pretty delightful artistic and creative opportunities. Man, am I grateful for everything.

Tonight, on the eve of my birthday, I got to teach something I love to a group of wonderfully open students. Lucky. I got to drive in a comfy car while listening to great music. Lucky. I got to come home to my “grown-up house” that my lovin’ hubby and I live in. Lucky.

FogYes, I’m a bit of a sentimental fool. I notice significance in places and times where, perhaps, others might not. It slows me down and might mean that I miss out on something else, but I don’t mind it. I love it. I love that tonight, while driving home through the thick fog, I was struck by how immediate it all is. Fog is really good at putting the “now” into focus and leaving out the “much later.” You can only see just a little bit in front of you, and when you’re improvising, that’s all you need to see. You know where you were and you know where you are. And that’s all that matters.

The fog and life and improvisation and the music and the soon-to-be-new-age-I’ve-never-been-before and my gratefulness made me a tiny bit teary eyed. Then, my awareness of my almost-cry, rooted in deep spontaneous appreciation, gave me more appreciation. How lucky that I’m living this, and realizing that I’m living this.

I’m filled with love about the whole thing, y’all.

It’s nice to take a moment to be grateful of where you’ve been, what you’ve done, who you’ve known and all of the unknown that is to come.





This post has one title; I have two.

12 11 2014

Every artist is familiar with the uncomfortable feeling of being too far away from creative projects for too long; I was a bit nervous that I wouldn’t find something soon enough down south. But, boy, I sure did arrive in Atlanta at the right time.

Right about the time we moved down here, I met Ian Covell, the founder of Atlanta’s new improv theater, Highwire Comedy.

While gettin’ used to a new life and a new home, it has been really helpful to have fun improv stuff and fun improv people to ground me. And now that Highwire Comedy has its own space in Decatur, we’ve been making lots and lots of plans! I am absolutely overjoyed to announce that I have been made both the Artistic Director and the Associate Education Director of Highwire Comedy!

I'm pleased as punch to be a part of this fantastic theater!

I’m pleased as punch to be a part of this fantastic theater!

Just getting the chance to start playin’ with fun people right away was already a relief!   (I got to play in “The Soapbox, Highwire’s weekly Armando-style show, mere days after arriving here.  Plus, I’m currently directing a FANTASTIC group of actors in “The Day Before Tomorrow,” an improvised show in the style of a disaster film, which opens later this month.)  But man, oh man!  Now I have a title–more than one, even!  I feel fancy.

Ian (my Artistic Director cohort and the Education Director) and I have sat down and have started creating class offerings and show schedules for Highwire. Stay tuned, y’all. 2015 is going to be a very exciting year!





Advanced Scene Study Class at The Brink

19 10 2014

the-brink-improvWell, I must have done something right, because the lovely folks at The Brink have asked me to teach an 8-week AdvancedScene Study class on Sundays starting a week from today!  We’ve already got quite a few folks signed up for this class, but there are some spots still open!  If you’ve been studying/performing improv for a while now, and want to take your scene work to the next level, then this class is for you!

This new 8-week session next Sunday (10/26)
  • Class is from 1:00pm-4:00pm and will begin on 10/26
  • This session of classes will last 8 weeks (10/26-12/14)
  • Amanda Rountree has been performing improvisational theatre professionally since 1992, teaching since 1998, and directing since 2002.  She recently moved to the Atlanta area from Chicago, where she was a faculty member with the Second City Training Center.
  • DESCRIPTION: Learn how you can nurture the skills needed to create grounded scenes that can sustain themselves for longer than just a few minutes.  In this workshop, we will focus on breaking out of any habits you may have formed that can hinder grounded work, while we explore the small steps we can make to do truly sustainable, dynamic scenes.  Come ready to dig in and play!
  • How to Pay for Class
    • ONLY 18 SPOTS AVAILABLE! If there is overwhelming interest we MIGHT add another time slot…but don’t hesitate to claim your seat now!
    • All students are required to pay a $25 reservation fee (it will be applied towards your tuition)
    • Here is the link to do that: Preview Image
    • Your reservation fee is non-refundable as it HOLDS A SPACE in a class that we are no longer able to offer someone else.
    • The remaining balance of $144 is due on the first day of class. Please make checks payable to: The Brink Improv
    • Your enrollment in the class will not be guaranteed until payment is received.
     
    See you in class!




Fun Improv Class for Non-Actors in North GA

9 10 2014

I am delighted to be offering this fun, one-night only improv class for adults with little to no improv experience.  If an improv class sounds a wee bit scary to you, and you live in northern Georgia, then this is the class for you!  And it will be fun, not scary–I promise!

Improv for Non-Actors
7:00-9:30 pm
Forsyth Academy of the Performing Arts

520 Industrial Way, Suite B
Cumming, GA

$25 per person
To register for this class, contact Forsyth Academy at info@forsythapa.com or 678.468.1731.

Looking for a new way to have a little fun with your friends, or to make new friends?  This workshop is geared towards those with little-to-no improv experience. Improvisation is more than just a useful tool for actors, it’s a different way of approaching life.  Through fun games and exercises, students will gain more confidence, more creativity, and more playfulness through the basic improv skills of listening, reacting, working with others, and trusting oneself.  Not only will it make you more comfortable while thinking on your feet, it’s a delightful way to spend an evening.

This is a great opportunity for you to have a fun night out with your buddies and walk out the door with a renewed sense of creativity, self-confidence, and maybe even some new friends!

In this workshop you will learn:

~How to trust yourself
~How to be spontaneous
~How to be more playful and creative in your every day life
~And much, much more

What People Are Saying

“I really enjoyed the safe environment that Amanda created.  I am really a beginner and I never felt like an outsider during the workshop.  Amanda made sure that we all walked away with a new skill and ways to think outside of the box!”  -CJ Leavens, Chicago





Sustainable Scenework Improv Workshop in Atlanta

8 10 2014

I’ll be teaching a one-day master-level improv workshop in Atlanta on October 18th!

This is a workshop for improvisers who would like to do scenes that can sustain themselves for longer than just a few minutes.  If you’ve been practicing/performing improv for a while now, but are still a bit intimidated when it comes to longer scenes, then this is the class for you!

Click here to register/pay for the class.  Space is limited–sign up now to reserve your spot!

Sustainable Scenework
Saturday, Oct. 18
12-4pm

Learn how you can nurture the skills needed to create grounded scenes that can sustain themselves for longer than just a few minutes.  In this workshop, we will focus on breaking out of any habits you may have formed that can hinder grounded work, while we explore the small steps we can make to do truly sustainable, dynamic scenes.  Come ready to dig in and play!

Amanda will be teaching her "Sustainable Scenework" master-class in Atlanta on 10/18/14.

Amanda will be teaching her “Sustainable Scenework” master-class in Atlanta on 10/18/14 at The Brink.

Amanda Rountree has been performing improvisational theatre professionally since 1992, teaching since 1998, and directing since 2002.  She recently moved to the Atlanta area from Chicago, where she was a faculty member with the Second City Training Center, an ensemble member with WNEP Theatre, and a writer/puppeteer with SNORF.   Her one-woman shows, The Good, the Bad, and the Monkey and 185 Buddhas Walk into a Bar… both had successful runs in Chicago and tours to other cities. Previously, she was a performer and instructor with Unexpected Productions and a performer and co-artistic director of Playback Theater Northwest in Seattle. Amanda has entertained audiences in seven countries and countless North American cities utilizing a wide variety of styles, disciplines, and formats.  She’s performed everything from improv games in Kentucky and improvised Shakespeare at the Colorado Shakespeare Festival to drama therapy in Japan and breakthrough formats in Germany.

The Brink Improv
3041 N Decatur Rd
Scottdale, GA 30079