Improv: It’s good to be king

Our last class was dedicated to status. The status we perceive of ourselves within society and how we perceive society or other members within. All our exercises (except the first one which I was partially late for) focused on playing roles of individuals with different status. One of the first exercises was to portray someone with a positive outlook towards everyone and high social status and walk around the room and react or greet one another. Our instructor would then change between high/low social status and positive/negative outlooks.

We were then asked to volunteer for what turned out to be a group exercise. I took the lead and was the first one up on the stage. When he then asked for one of the two of us to raise our hands, I did so. He proclaimed me king, and the other volunteer my guard. The other classmates were petitioners at court hoping to speak with me. Each person presented me with different stories or grievances for me to resolve.

The role years of RPGs had prepared me for.

At first, everyone seemed to equate high social class with high status. Our instructor challenged that assumption by having us play with various situations where we’d contrast or compete against each other on who was the lowest or highest status. The takeaways of the evening were to determine how this reflects on characterization. I found it was easier to craft a persona with the additional information.

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