Last week of Comedy Month underway

11/16/2010

Posts have been lacking the last few weeks, as I’ve been otherwise occupied deep in the hilarity of the Philadelphia Comedy Collective’s COMEDY MONTH. Both the PHILADELPHIA IMPROV FESTIVAL and the PHILLY SKETCHFEST enjoyed incredible acts playing to record audiences. Recaps of those weeks will be coming soon.

Last night kicked of the final week of Comedy Month, with selections from the PHILADELPHIA JOKE INITIATIVE entitled These Guys Are Good Vol 1. We saw the comedic illusions and body manipulations of flexible comedian JONATHAN BURNS. THOMAS CHOINACKY gave audiences a taste of his obsession with an excerpt from his show Thomas is Titanic. Finally, UN Ambassador and Nobel Laureate BUDDY FELCH dropped jaws with tales of his experiences with Ghandi, the Dalai Lama and other high profile figures. The evening was hosted by the incredibly funny CHRIS COTTON.

The fun continues next with These Guys Are Good Vol 2. In the hopper for tonight are videos and sketches from I’D RATHER BE HERE PRODUCTIONS, the musical comedy stylings of TODD CHAPPELLE, and variety show comedy from 2 DUDES & A DUDE (featuring former 6th Borough sketchers COREY COHEN & JASON MESSINA).

Here’s a look at the rest of PJI Week:

TUESDAY
8PM: THESE GUYS ARE GOOD VOL 2

WEDNESDAY
8PM: NED TALKS

THURSDAY
8PM: THE N CROWD GOES LONG
10PM: COMEDY GONE BAD

FRIDAY
8PM: PREVIEW – A VERY LADIES & GENTLEMEN CHRISTMAS SPECIAL
10PM: COMEDYSPORTZ PRESENTS GAME, SET, MATCH GAME!

SATURDAY
CIF’S NATIONAL COLLEGE IMPROV TOURNAMENT
12PM, 2PM, 4PM & 6PM: EASTERN REGIONAL PRELIMINARIES
9PM: EASTERN REGIONAL FINALS

All shows are held at the Philadelphia Shakespeare Theatre, 2111 Sansom St in Center City Philadelphia.

Mixing sketch, stand-up, film, music, education, parody and a healthy dose of competition, this eclectic last week is the perfect topper to what has been an incredible Comedy Month. Come join us as PJI explores the bizarre and surreal corners of today’s comedy.

Tickets and additional information

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ACT FAST: Second City Master Workshop

07/14/2009

The SECOND CITY cast of CITY OF NUTTERLY LOVE will be teaching a master improv workshop tonight from 7-9PM at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre. The class is geared for students that already have some improv experience under their belt. Instructors include EDGAR BLACKMON, RACHEL MILLER & KATIE RICH.

The class is $39, but if you mention PhillyImprov.com and reserve your slot by 3PM today, you’ll pay just $25. Email Janette Amadio of PTC to RSVP.

nutterlylove

SECOND CITY MASTER CLASS
w/ EDGAR BLACKMON, RACHEL MILLER & KATIE RICH
TUESDAY, JULY 14TH @ 7PM
SUZANNE ROBERTS THEATRE

EDGAR BLACKMON (Ensemble) is thrilled to be performing with The Second City. After graduating from The Second City Conservatory, he went on to work with The Second City’s Outreach and Diversity Program, starring and writing in four revues, including Six Degrees of Reparations and How The Kanye West Was Won. As a member of the two man comedy team,The Mad Highentists, he performed in All The Way Live and On Your Side in The Second City’s Skybox Theater and at Sketchfest in Chicago.He couldn’t do this without the support of his family, and for that he says thanks.

RACHEL MILLER (Ensemble) is delighted to be spending some quality time in Philadelphia. She is currently an understudy to The Second City national touring companies and the Mainstage Theatre in Chicago. She has also performed with The Second City throughout Mexico, New England and The Caribbean via Norwegian Cruise Lines. She spent 5-1/2 years in Amsterdam with sketch/improv theatre Boom Chicago, sings with guitar/vocal improv duet Vlad & Rachel, and recently created The Podcast at the Annoyance Theatre. Previous Chicago improv includes The Pat Shay Dancers, Kiki Greenwell and Baby Wants Candy. She has performed at comedy festivals in Edinburgh, Singapore, Berlin and Chicago and freestyle-rapped at U2’s European “Vertigo” Tour Party. She hearts this cast, her family and Mr. Hicks.

KATIE RICH (Ensemble) is very lucky to be a part of this stellar cast. A Chicago native, Katie earned a B.S. (yup) from Northwestern University before getting the opportunity to tour all over the world with The Second City. She also performs at the iO Chicago with Carl and the Passions, the Frank Hayes 4,The Deltones Improvised Musical and Women Aren’t Funny. You can see her in those ubiquitous Sonic Drive-in commercials, in Martin Short’s “Let Freedom Hum,” and in the movie The Ice Harvest. Katie is proud to be an instructor for both the iO and The Second City. She’d be nowhere without her friends and worse than nowhere without her family to whom she owes everything. Katie spends a lot of time figuring out what to do now that her dream has come true.


Last day for PHIT Level 1 discount

03/29/2009

Next Sunday, the Philly Improv Theater will launch a new Level 1 class, taught by Kristen Schier. Today is the last day to get the early registration discount, as tomorrow the price jumps up to $199.

If you’re interested in trying out improv for the first time or if you’re looking to take the leap from shortform to longform, PHIT is the perfect place to dive in. Schier will focus on fundamental principles like agreement and characterization and introduce students to the Armando format.

PHIT Level 1: Into to Longform
Instructor: Kristen Schier
8 weeks, Sundays, 4/5 – 5/24
$150 through 3/29, $199 afterwards


PHIF4 Workshops!!

10/10/2008

Workshop registration is now open for the 4th Annual Philadelphia Improv Festival.

All workshops will be held at the Plays & Players Theater, 1714 Delancey St. The cost is $50 and they will be 3 hours in length.

If you are a PHIF4 performer, you will receive an email pointing you to a page where you can register at a 30% discount. You can also emailfor the link.

Friday, Nov. 14th

Starting Out Strong
Instructor: Bill Binder
Friday, 11/14 @ 10AM

The beginnings of shows should be more than a chance to create chaos or fulfill some requirement of your format. Those beginning minutes of a show are a chance to check in with your ensemble, to find and agree on the focus and direction of your show, and hopefully, to invite the audience to come on the journey with you rather than confusing them. This workshop uses techniques to unify and strengthen your ensemble’s openings.

Deal With It
Instructor: Mark Grenier
Friday, 11/14 @ 2PM

As improvisers, we often expect others to play by certain rules and we get frustrated when teammates don’t meet our expectations. Sometimes we need a reminder that the improviser’s job is to accept – to accept everything and to embrace every contribution as a gift. Your ability to “yes and” is truly tested when encountering the unusual, the unexpected, and the undesired. Well, in this workshop you’ll be confronted with the things you may despise – questions, denials, curve balls, poor listening, bad object work, selfish partners, and complete stupidity – and you’ll learn ways to not just accept it but to make magic out of it. Stop wishing for the ideal partner and deal with it!

Breaking Out the Scene
Instructor: Asaf Ronen
Friday, 11/14 @ 2PM

Learn how to go beyond the linear storytelling of improvisation by incorporating editing and presentation techniques appropriated from independent films like Amelié, The Royal Tenenbaums and Reservoir Dogs. Techniques will be shown on developing a group’s awareness to all the possibilities that are available to a group at any given moment in an improv scene including ways to build mood, theme and character.

Saturday, Nov. 15th

MadSkillz
Instructor: Rene Duquesnoy
Saturday, 11/15 @ 10AM

Learn how to rap for an improv show. Rene Duquesnoy, creator of the hiphop improv show The Beatbox, will teach freestyling techniques, short-form rap games (like Rap Line, Beastie Rap, and Audience & Hammer Time) and different effects used in The Beatbox. Learn how to enhance a scene by adding quick hiphop tricks. This class will help longform and shortform improvisers alike.

Advanced Dialogue Techniques
Instructor: Kevin Patrick Robbins
Saturday, 11/15 @ 10AM and/or 2PM

Learn to economize your dialogue and strip out unnecessary exposition, explanations and justifications. A variety of dialogue techniques will be explored that will improve your scene work, lead to more relationship-driven scenes, and some that just make your scenes cooler.

You can choose to take this at either time slot individually or combine them for a six hour dialogue intensive.


Improv Diagnostics

Instructor: Asaf Ronen
Saturday, 11/15 @ 2PM

No lesson plans. Instead, the focus is on pinpointing the individual students’ tendencies. Find out what your strengths are and where you could explore further. Working in a non-stop series of short, quick scenes, you will learn what your patterns are and how to break them through personalized challenges. Maximized stage time guaranteed. Great for beginners who want to develop new skills and for professionals who want to keep fresh.

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PHIF is also offering a Special Student Pass for $50 that gets you full access to all shows and a 30% discount on workshops. Signup before 10/20 and you’ll also get a free PHIF4 tshirt!

Questions can be directed to workshops@phif.org