Teaching Students About Jonathan Mangum
Introducing students to well-known performers and artists is an excellent way to inspire creativity and encourage an appreciation of performing arts. One such performer is Jonathan Mangum, an American actor, comedian, and improvisational artist best known for his role as an announcer on the game show “Let’s Make a Deal” and his numerous appearances on “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” Let’s explore how educators can teach students about Jonathan Mangum and successfully incorporate improvisation into the classroom.
Early Life and Career
Jonathan Mangum was born on January 16, 1971, in Charleston, South Carolina. Foster their curiosity by discussing his background; he graduated from the University of Central Florida with a degree in psychology. Notably, it was during college that Mangum first began to perform with SAK Theater – this marked the humble beginnings of his journey into the world of improvisational acting.
His Work in Television
Mangum has worked with several famous names in comedy, such as Wayne Brady and Drew Carey, making appearances on shows like “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” and “The Wayne Brady Show.” Employ clips from some of these shows to portray Mangum’s quick wit, sense of humor, and ability to think on his feet. Furthermore, highlight his role in “Let’s Make a Deal” where he not only announces but also entertains audiences through improvisation.
Besides television, Jonathan Mangum has toured extensively with improvisational shows like “Wayne Brady and Friends” and “Drew Carey’s Improv-A-Ganza.” This live performance experience gives students the opportunity to understand how improv functions both on-screen and off-screen. Playing snippets from these performances will help students grasp how performers can entertain various audiences without scripts.
Incorporating Improvisation into Teaching
Teaching students about Jonathan Mangum calls for educators to adopt a hands-on approach that emphasizes the importance of improvisation in enhancing creativity:
1. Warm-Up Exercises: To loosen up, begin the lesson with fun, low-pressure activities such as “Zip-Zap-Zop” or “One-Word Story.”
2. Short-form Improv Games: Introduce games drawing inspiration from “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” These can include “Scenes from a Hat” where students draw different scenarios and act them out spontaneously or “Props,” which involves using a prop for multiple unique purposes.
3. Encourage Risk-Taking: Whether on stage or in the classroom, improvisational artists thrive on taking risks. Reassure your students that making mistakes is part of the learning process when stepping outside their comfort zones.
Jonathan Mangum provides an excellent example of an artist who has built a successful career through improvisation and comic ingenuity. By teaching students about his background and work, educators can inspire budding performers and instill an appreciation for improvisational art. Adopting improv-based activities helps develop versatile communication skills, teamwork, and creative problem-solving abilities in students.