Started the Level 3 Harold class with Jennings tonight, and it kicked my ass. We did a lot of pretty physical mirroring and sound and motion. It didn't start out that way, of course. The initial mirroring was the usual facing each other and twitching our hands (except for show-offs Melanie and Paul with their ballet).
After the initial slow start we had more fun. Erik and I morphed into monkeys and then shaved and became human. Tons of brutish, apelike fun. As we worked, we waved our hands around and (some of us, but not me) jumped up and down. Shit wore me out.
I have been in classes that had a group mind almost from the first warm up, and at least one that never really found it at all. This one, like most, I think, falls in the middle. The group didn't get cohesive right away, but we were within a few pages of each other by the end. We had fun, and we will keep finding the fun, I think.
I noticed that, although everyone didn't always know what everyone was doing, we did find ways of communicating what was going on. A couple of times I met someone's eye and we both realized that we were the only ones who knew what we were all doing, and so we found ways to show everyone else. I believe others had the same experience tonight.
I hope I don't sound like a heretic saying that I think this is the most common manifestation of group mind. There is that mystical, magical thing that happens when everyone just knows. But I think more often than not, a few people know and everyone else trusts them until they figure it out. That's still pretty cool, and it's better than the non-improv community can manage. This makes us superior.
Bask in your superiority, Improvisor. You are great.