22 - Shame

December 10, 2014

Shame is that secret, perceived weakness that can either power or handicap an improviser's performance. We're comedians.  We are all dealing with some kind of childhood psychic trauma that continues to affect us adults.  In this episode, Rob and Adam reveal their own personal shame and how it affected their comedy careers early on.  Also video games and hockey!

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23 - Ego and Ensemble

December 17, 2014

Ego is the part of Self that interacts with outside world.  A strong ego is important for developing your voice and point of view onstage.  But is it possible that your comedic voice might be interfering with the quality of group work onstage?

This week Rob and Adam try to figure out how much of You should you bring to the stage.  Passive Aggressive Burns: Many.  Impromptu Christmas Carols: One.  
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25 - Survival

February 18, 2015

It's the 2nd Beat (Season) of The Backline with Rob and Adam.  In this episode, the guys remember back to their first days of being a "professional" improviser and all the odd jobs and desperate measures they took to stay afloat. Discover that there truly is nothing more Bohemian than a Pizza Pizza coupon.  

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27 - Story

March 4, 2015

Every scene has a story.  For game-based improvisers, we believe that story is what happens while you’re busy with other stuff.  But for narrative improvisers, story is something to be cultivated.  In this episode, Rob leads Adam through a Joseph Campbell-esque journey and gives tips on how to apply it to your show tonight.  Adam tells his own story of sneaking into a secret backroom speakeasy … May all your chocolate be sexual!

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28 - Self-Evaluation

March 11, 2015

After a particularly rough show, Rob and Adam sit down to discuss the importance of self-evaluation.  If your troupe has made the dangerous decision to play without a coach, you'll need to learn how to deal with failure, self-critique, team challenges, and taking your play to next level - on your own. 

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29 - The Harold or Not the Harold?

March 18, 2015

The Harold is the most recognized format in improvisation.  The list of celebrities and improvisers who have learned, loved, and mastered it is extensive.  In this episode, Rob and Adam discuss what is a Harold, how it works, and some tips for improvisers struggling with 123ABC's.  The guys also discuss Pam Victor's incredible article "Geeking Out with The Harold (What Makes a Harold a Harold)."  A link of her blog post can be found at our Facebook page @thebacklinepod.

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32 - What’s Missing?

April 8, 2015

This week Adam and Rob talk about might be running through your head, standing on the backline of a longform improv set.  Great improvisers don't walk onstage and just do good improv scenes.  They are mindful of the scenes that came before, the overall energy of the show, what variety looks like in longform improv, and most importantly what's missing from a show.  Also the guys answer listener questions regarding being blackballed from shows and which accents are offensive onstage.

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34 - Back to Basics

April 22, 2015

Improv is getting too confusing.  Go back to basics.  This episode shows you how.

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35 - Failure

April 28, 2015

The comedy business is hard.  It's full of rejection, hardships, and failure.   If you're feeling lost in your career, this episode is for you.  This podcast contains a reading from Improvising Now: A Practical Guide to Modern Improv, available on Amazon.com or wherever improv books are sold.

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38 - Editing

May 13, 2015

There's nothing worse than a perfect improv scene that goes on for too long.  This week, Rob and Adam tackle different types of edits, tips on how to make clear transitions, and what a well-edited show looks like.  Enjoy!

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