CLASS DESCRIPTIONS

As our mission statement says, we believe improvisation is for EVERYONE. It, at its essence, is not about being funny or clever, or needing to be an actor or performer. Improvisation at its core is a method anyone can learn and practice which teaches you to be present, listen, co-create, not to always have to know, see the power of agreement, discover an inner and authentic confidence, and trust your self, your instincts, and your teammates. Our classes and workshops are designed for both the seasoned improviser who wants to learn a GROUNDLINGS-inspired, character-based approach to improvisation as well as the business professional looking to better themselves for their professional life.


INTRO TO IMPROV : 3-Hour Class

Give us 3 hours and we’ll help you discover the benefits of improvisation!

WHAT IS IT?
An introduction for anyone to learn the fundamentals of improvisation…the basic tools, rules, and philosophy…through games, drills, and simple scenes with a uniquely character-based “Groundlings”-inspired approach. It's VERY fun, VERY supportive and noncompetitive.

COST:
$50

DURATION:
3 hours, an evening or on a weekend day. Offered several times a month.

PREREQUISITE:
There is no prerequisite for this class.

FOR:
Anyone. We’re not kidding! See if you like improvisation. See if you like our approach to improvisation. This three hour workshop will give you an understanding of WHAT makes improv work and WHY it works…and a new confidence that you…yes, even YOU…can do it. Plus, you’ll have new skills to help you in work, and life. More effective communication, less self-consciousness about in speaking in public, an easier access to thinking on your feet, and the ability to listen without an agenda.

Whether you’re a performer, banker, comedian, graphic designer, public speaker, sales rep or lawyer, improv is honestly for anyone who wants to do it. The benefits are limitless. And best of all, it’s fun! Yes, that’s right, FUN!

The Groundlings has been the go-to place to learn improv for thousands of people, boasting alums like Melissa McCarthy, Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Lisa Kudrow, Will Forte, Kathy Griffin, and Cheryl Hines…to name a few. Holly trained and performed over 8 years there before moving to New York and starting her own school. So….you’re in good hands.

 


FUNDAMENTALS OF IMPROV: 10-12 Week Class

In 10-12 weeks (2.5 - 3 hour classes) you will be introduced to the tenets of improvisation through the use of drills, exercises and games. We do not teach a particular format.  Instead, we prefer to teach students the basics and philosophy behind improv itself before teaching any particular structure. You will also be introduced to our school’s unique character-based approach.

We also understand everyone develops differently and at their own pace, so we offer a very supportive and individualized process.

WHAT YOU’LL GET:

• all of the foundational improv tools in order to not only understand the principles of how improv works & why

• the opportunity to grow & develop with our specific approach to teaching

• see & experience first hand why improvisation is not just about comedy and performing, but a way to live life with more freedom, confidence, and positivity

• students are invited to retake this level at any time and as often as you want. There’s no rush in our process and the basics are something that all improvisers know is key to working and reworking throughout one’s career

COST:
$495 ($470 Intro grads, $415 refresher)

DURATION:
10 or 12 weeks, one evening a week. Offered several times  throughout the year.  Includes one optional performance.

PREREQUISITE:
There is no prerequisite for this class.

 

FUNDAMENTALS INTENSIVES

These special classes cover the syllabus for a 12-week class but in a more condensed timeframe. Fundamental Intensives usually include 3 hour classes twice a week for 5 weeks. 


SCENE WORK BASICS: 8-Weeks

This is the next level for students who decide they want to move on from the FUNDAMENTALS OF IMPROVISATION class.  You’ll be able to incorporate and put into practice what you learned, gaining confidence and your own voice as an improviser. There is more open scene work emphasizing the rules and structure from FUNDAMENTALS. There will also be space and time given to incorporate character point of view into the process.

This class can be retaken at any time and as often as you want to brush up on your scenework and integrate what you’ve leaned along the way.

COST:
$360

DURATION:
8 weeks, one evening a week.

PREREQUISITE:
FUNDAMENTALS OF IMPROVISATION

You can take and retake this class as many times as you want. We encourage students who have been away for a while to start back at this level as a refresher.


GET OUTTA YOUR HEAD! 8-Weeks

Stop judging and start playing. 

While building characters and utilizing them in scene work, we will focus on creating honestly and pushing aside our fears and second guesses.

This is a tool to open your mind so that you can speak from the character's voice and not the improviser's. This skill is pivotal to improvising effectively and freely.

COST:
$360

DURATION:
8 weeks, one evening a week.

PREREQUISITE: 
SCENE WORK BASICS(8 week class)

You can take and retake this class as many times as you want. We encourage students who have been away for a while to start back at this level as a refresher.


ADVANCED SCENEWORK: CHARACTER:8 Weeks

ADVANCED SCENEWORK INTO CHARACTER

A chance to dive more deeply into creating and sustaining scenes. Learning the more and more subtle ways to “yes, and” information and suggestions. Sharpening skills to build a scene more organically and honestly, and the tools to get back on track when you get off track.

Then, while sustaining scenework, learning what a character is in improvisation, how it can help you in your improv work, and the various ways to create and build a character. 

COST:
$360

DURATION:
8 weeks, one evening a week.

PREREQUISITE: 
GET OUTTA YOUR HEAD (8 week class)

You can take and retake this class as many times as you want. We encourage students who have been away for a while to start back at this level as a refresher.

THEN, YOU HAVE OPTIONS WITH OUR ADVANCED FOCUS SERIES…


CHARACTER WRITING LAB: 6 weeks

This level takes what you’ve learned about improv and applies it to writing for both characters and sketch. In the 6 classes, you will discover how to write from a character’s point of view, and build situations and scenarios around your characters to best support or highlight them.

For students interested in learning to write, this is a useful and natural first step into that world using your improv tools. The class is also useful for students who want to strengthen their character work and delve more deeply into them - spending more time in their skin and thereby understanding them more fully, which helps gain more confidence and comfort in playing characters in general. 

No prior writing experience is needed. Writing will be done both in class and outside of class. 

The class will culminate in a show presenting work created in the class.

COST:
$350

DURATION:
6 weeks, one evening a week.

PREREQUISITE: 
ADVANCED SCENEWORK INTO CHARACTER 


SPECIALTY WORKSHOP  
MUSIC IMPROV (6 WEEKS/8CLASSES):

In this class we will work together to gain a sense of comfort and confidence in creating interesting, memorable melodies and learn how to focus on the essentials of rhythm/range and silence and how to use each of these musical tools to take you out of the head-space of having to create content. Also we will use presentational skills to increase our level of stage presence and performance energy while improvising songs. We will work individually and in pairs and as a group on different exercises to make the songs we improvise out of thin air appear finished the very time they are performed. AND we will have a BLAST!!

More on Rob:

The  winner of the 2011 INNY (Improvisation News New York) Award for Best Improv Coach, Rob has performed all over the world as a comedian / improvisor, most recently in London, Mexico and Guatemala. His talents range from expert interviews to interactive game shows to hilarious impromptu songs about audience members, accompanying himself on guitar or piano. 

Rob was a cast member / director / teacher / music director for Chicago City Limits for 17 years. Rob has improvised on The Daily Download and The CBS Early Show. Rob studied at Chicago City Limits and the Upright Citizens Brigade.
 

More on Deb:

Deb is a graduate of The American Academy of Dramatic Arts in NYC, and performs regularly with the national touring improv company Chicago City Limits.

Deb successfully created programs that teach curriculum through improvisation which have been integrated into public schools in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. Deb has appeared on Late Night with Conan O’Brien, and has worked as an actor, improviser, singer, and voiceover artist for the last twenty years. For more information on Deb, please visit her blog: www.DebRabbai.com.

Both Rob and Deb share co-artistic director / co-producer and a cast member duties of Broadway's Next Hit Musical.  It is an all-improvised musical which tours nationally to 30-40 cities a year. 

COST:
$480

DURATION: 
6 weeks, 8 classes multi days

PREREQUISITE: 
FUNDAMENTALS OF IMPROV

You can take and retake this class as many times as you want. We encourage students who have been away for a while to start back at this level as a refresher.


ADVANCED FOCUS SERIES

All can be taken as often as you wish. 

COST: 

$360

DURATION:
8 weeks, one evening a week. Offered several times through the course of the year. 

LONGFORM IMPROV

An introduction into some the formats and structures you can improvise within. Short form is usually short scenes and games guided by a director with suggestions given by the audience. Longform is more open and loose, often director-less, and can span 10 minutes to an entire show. Improvolution highlights the “clap-in” format since it is the most open format and encourages characters. 

PREREQUISITE:
ADVANCED SCENEWORK INTO CHARACTER

BYCS: ONGOING IMPROV WORKOUTS

Our new & improved version of Drop-In class...BYCs stand for "Build Your Chops". We wanted to change the thinking around them which is why we changed the name. They aren’t merely “drop in” classes, they are an option for students in between classes who want to continue to learn. They will have a class-like feel instead of a “in the meantime” feel. BYC sessions will consist of a series of 3-4 classes in a row, taught by the same instructor, emphasizing an aspect of improv such as characters, adding information, or listening.  There will also be a show that you can sign up for as well.

SPECIALTY WORKSHOPS

We will also be offering special workshops at various times led by Improvolution teachers or special guest instructors:

STORYTELLING / SKETCH COMEDY WRITING

EMERGENT IMPROV

IMPROVISED SHAKESPEARE

THEATER & FILM GENRES

MUSIC IMPROV

2 PROV

CLOWNING & MOVEMENT