Beyond Words with Rebecca MacMillan


Beyond Words – silent and non verbal improv with The Maydays co-founder and Impromptu Shakespeare player Rebecca MacMillan.

Friday 9th April 2pm-4pm BST Find your local time here.

£17  Early bird: £15 if you book before March 31st.

Participants:  Min 8 – max 12.  If we have to cancel because there aren’t enough bookings, I’ll give you at least 24 hours’ notice.

This is an intermediate level class. There aren’t any entry exams (!) but you should be comfortable improvising in general. Ask me if you’re not sure

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“The music is not in the notes, but in the silence in between.”
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart.

Discover what happens when we take away the spoken words in our improvisation. Everything else becomes so important – subtle changes in body language, gestures and facial expression speak volumes; non-verbal sounds and noises define a character or say the unspeakable; music, sound effects and other background noises become foreground.

In this playful class we will explore creating scenes using little to no spoken words and dialogue. Some of the work we do will be subtle and delicate, some intense and dramatic, but don’t worry, we will also be doing some silly and goofy things too.

Things we’ll do:

  • Getting comfortable: pushing past the pressure we feel to use words as soon as possible when in a scene.
  • Not speaking much, but saying lots: working those non-verbal communication muscles to maximum effect to create characters with points of view, and to make offers and build on them.
  • Background noise: creating atmosphere and even narrative using background sounds.
  • Silent genres: playing with silent or minimally verbal tropes and genres we are familiar with through film and tv, from the serious to the silly.

I had a chat with Rebecca about it here


Only Fools and Horses is a 1980s BBC comedy.  This is the moment Rebecca mentions. 🙂

Headshot of Rebecca MacMillan

Rebecca MacMillan is a founding member of The Maydays, and also plays with Impromptu Shakespeare, The Adventures of the Improvised Sherlock Holmes and Steamed! The Improv Dickens Novel. She has been performing and teaching improvisation theatre in the UK and beyond for over 15 years.

Rebecca leading a class