/ #scenework #improv-game 

One sentence at a time

Two players do a scene. They must say one sentence at a time: Player A starts with a sentence, Player B answer with another sentence, and so on.

A good setup to do a scene where we concentrate on the listening between players.

  • Group size : 2+
  • Time : 30 minutes


The two players are doing a normal scene. Each player must say one sentence only and then listen to the answer by the other player.


This setup helps to analyze what is happening and how each player listens to each other. By saying one sentence at a time, you can discuss if each sentence is connected to the previous one and not blocking.

Keith Johnstone in Impro for Storytellers presents a series of way players are killing stories. This exercise is perfect to notice them and discuss with the group. Here are some of these blocking methods :

  • Blocking: a direct negation to the offer
  • Wimping: Accepting the ideas but don’t add anything on them
  • Canceling: dismantling what has been established
  • Gossiping: Avoiding interaction by discussing something that happens outside of the scene, arguing on a price, etc.
  • Agreed activities: Doing exactly what the other player asks you to do, killing all interaction that can exist between players.
  • Sidetracking: Adding elements to avoid the actual story
  • Being original
  • Looping
  • Gagging
  • Lowering the stakes

Baptiste Coulange

CTO at @cornis_SAS / socially acceptable maths nerd of @podcastscience / always improvising