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Online Classes Information

During the global pandemic, Made Up Theatre is offering only online classes.  We have altered our curriculum to offer classes outside of our normal schedule, so both alumni and newer students have something to check out!  Our normal curriculum of Intro to Improv, Scene Study, & Improv Games will return when in-house operations resume.

Online Classes

Made Up Theatre is now offering all classes online until further notice. Experience the power of play, and the fun of improvisational comedy from the comfort of your own home.
All classes are PST times and will be held via the video conferencing app Zoom.

Also, check out our testimonials to hear what our students are saying!

Click the tabs below for more info and registration.

Course Description:

Explore the Elements of Improv in our introductory course. You will learn the core fundamentals and principles of improv, focusing on various games and exercises that encourage trust, communication, agreement (“yes and”); active listening, character, status, and making your scene partner look good.  After that, you’ll start to apply these concepts into fully improvised scenes.

5 Week Course (2 hours weekly)

Mondays, June 7 – July 5 (7:00pm – 9:00pm PST)

Tuition: $135

Instructor: Sean Taylor

Sean is one of the principal owners of Made Up Theatre.  Sean has been performing in both long form and short form improvised shows for over 15 years.  He has training with Comedysportz, Upright Citizen’s Brigade, The Second City, and iO Chicago.

12 Student Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: None

*Classes meet once a week via the video conferencing software Zoom.

Please note, unless otherwise noted, all new students are required to start at Intro to Improv.

Do you have limited time?  Can’t commit to a full course?  No worries!  We have Drop In classes, where you can work on your improvisation skills while focusing on a specific skill, concept, or style.  It’s just a one-time commitment!

Upcoming Drop In Course:

Tell Me How You Really Feel – Using Emotions in Improv

In this drop-in class, students will learn how emotional initiations & responses can add so much to our improv repertoire. Through exercises & short scenes, we will practice building more meaningful relationships with our scene partners, resulting in not only more memorable scenes, but lots more fun!

Monday April 12 (7:30pm – 9:30pm PST)

Tuition: $20 (Only $15 Early Bird Pricing until 4/5)

Instructor: Victoria M.

Class will be taught by MUT mainstage cast member, Victoria. Trained as a scientist, Victoria enjoyed stand-up comedy for years when she decided to pursue improvisation. She has been improvising with Made Up Theatre since 2015, and has studied with Magnet Theater, Rise Comedy, Empire Improv, Will Hines, Laura Hall, Julie Brister, Jason Shotts, Colleen Doyle, and others. As a mom of four adult children, Victoria now knows she’s been improvising for years!

12 Student Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: Completion of Intro to Improv or equivalent training at outside venue.

Course Description:

You know the show! Now, learn the games! In this online course, you’ll learn the games made popular on the hit TV show “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?”. Games like Party Quirks, Weird Newscasters, Hollywood Director, and so much more!  Through challenging improv games, you’ll learn all about committing to characters, embracing rather than fearing failure, and trimming out the fat of your improv scenes and getting to the FUN!

6 Week Course (2 hours weekly)

Wednesdays, May 12 – June 16 (7:00pm – 9:00pm PST)

Show tentatively set for June 23 at 8:00pm

Tuition: $150

Instructor: Sean Taylor

Sean is one of the principal owners of Made Up Theatre.  Sean has been performing in both long form and short form improvised shows for over 15 years.  He has training with Comedysportz, Upright Citizen’s Brigade, The Second City, and iO Chicago.

12 Student Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: Completion of Intro to Improv (online or in-person) or equivalent training at outside venue.

*Classes meet once a week via the video conferencing software Zoom.

Note: if you have previous improv experience outside of MUT and want to skip Intro to Improv, you must contact us first before registering.

Course Description:

Taking what you’ve learned about character and relationship work, “heightening,” making bold choices, and putting together a long form improv show, this class will show you how to use these tools and focus them into creating a long form piece with just two people! You’ll learn about give and take, pacing a show and a scene, boosting your confidence on stage, and more!  Plus, this is the one class where you get to register alongside an improv buddy!  This means that for a majority of the class, you will be exclusively honing your skills alongside your partner of choice.

5 Week Course (2 hours weekly)

Mondays, April 19 – May 17th| 7:00pm – 9:00pm PST

Student Show tentatively set for May 24 at 8:00pm PST

Tuition: $150

Instructor: Trent Dozier

Trent is a Chicago improvisor, originally from the Bay Area. He has performed and studied improv at Made Up Theatre and ComedySportz San Jose in California, and The Second City, iO Chicago, The Annoyance, ComedySportz Chicago, CIC Theater and more in Chicago. He has also taught improv at Made Up Theatre. In Chicago, he is known for his award-nominated two-prov team, Tenn & Peller. Since 2018, T&P has performed in, hosted, and produced over 100 improv shows.

8 Student Limit (4 Duos)

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: Completion of Intro to Improv (online or in-person) or equivalent training at outside venue.

*Classes meet once a week via the video conferencing software Zoom.

Note: if you have previous improv experience outside of MUT and want to skip Intro to Improv, you must contact us first before registering.

Please note, we are only offering spots for confirmed DUOs.  This means that you and your partner of choice must each purchase your spot and put your partner’s name in the order notes.  Please try your best to register at the exact same time to help us avoid overbooking.

Course Description:

One of the most satisfying and challenging improv formats is the Long Form Narrative!  It’s improvising a story from start to finish with dynamic characters, exciting story beats, and engaging dialogue and action.  You’ll learn how to instantaneously jump into the middle of a story (that doesn’t exist!) and build to a fulfilling conclusion through cause & effect and heightening action.  It’ll be challenging, but gosh, is it fun!

6 Week Course (2 hours weekly)

Tuesdays April 13 – May 18 (7:00pm – 9:00pm PST)

Show tentatively set for May 25 at 8:00pm

Tuition: $150

Instructor: Edward Hsieh

Edward is a Made Up Theatre cast member and teacher, who has been performing improv since 2015.  He has performed in hundreds of improv shows, including Closing Night & The Wheel of Genres, where he performed his favorite format, the Long Form Narrative.

8 Student Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: Completion of Intro to Improv & a long form improv class, such as Improv Scene Study, or a long form improv class at an outside venue.
Please, email us at info@madeuptheatre.com with questions about eligibility.

*Classes meet once a week via the video conferencing software Zoom.

Acting 2

Course Description:

Whether you are starting out or wish to return to the foundations of a strong technique, the focus in this class is on truth and being present. We’ll explore quick and powerful ways to make your performance more natural and spontaneous and dive deeper into character study and script analysis, building on the work we began in Acting 1. Students will work with monologues, script analysis, and scene study. A great start for the beginning actor or improvisor who wants to deepen their performance. No experience necessary. 

6 Week Course (2.5 hours weekly)

Sundays June 13 – July 25 (5:00pm – 7:30pm PST) | No class on July 4th

Tuition: $150

Instructor: Jessica Bettencourt
Jessica is an actor, filmmaker and director living in New York City. She earned her MFA from The New School for Drama and has appeared in multiple films, new media projects and off Broadway, most recently writing and directing her own pilot.

jessica head shot

10 Student Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: No experience necessary.

*Classes meet once a week via the video conferencing software Zoom.

sketch comedy 101

Course Description:

Students will learn the basics of sketch comedy. Using techniques from Second City and Saturday Night Live. Students will improvise an idea and see it through to a final script. We will also discuss the history and evolution in sketch comedy in america, as well as its future. In addition, students are encouraged to think outside the stage and realize that sketch can also include comedic songs and video content.

6 Week Course

Thursdays, April 22nd – May 27th (7:00pm – 9:00pm PST)

Shows is tentatively set for June 3rd.

Tuition: $150

Instructor: Justin Embrey

Justin Embrey is a Made Up Theatre alumni, who has a Bachelors in Comedy Writing and Performance from Columbia College Chicago; iO Chicago; and is a current house team performer at Second City Hollywood.

12 Student Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: Completion of Intro to Improv (online or in-person) or equivalent training at outside venue is recommended but not required.

*Classes meet once a week.

sketch comedy 201

Course Description:

The goal of this class being each student will create a packet/portfolio of a variety of different works. Our goal would be to produce more of a revue style show with more than just sketches; maybe songs, blackouts, runners, etc.  Sketch Comedy 201 will also focus on character comedy and solo sketch, where you’ll Write and develop solo digital comedy for this quarantine era (front-facing comedy).

7 Week Course

TBD

Tuition: $199

Instructor: Justin Embrey

Justin Embrey is a Made Up Theatre alumni, who has a Bachelors in Comedy Writing and Performance from Columbia College Chicago; iO Chicago; and is a current house team performer at Second City Hollywood.

10 Student Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: Completion of Sketch Comedy 101 or an equivalent Intro to Sketch Comedy/Writing at an outside venue.  For questions about eligibility, please email us at info@madeuptheatre.com.

*Classes meet once a week.

The Playground is an improv jam, where anybody is able to come out and play on our stage in improvised games and scenes.  You’ll get the chance to play various games that are featured in the hit TV show “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?” and Made Up Theatre’s online improv comedy shows, such as Freeze Tag, World’s Worst, Categories, and MORE!  And you’ll get to play in just some straight-up improvised scenes!  That’s right! You are the stars of this performance! We invite anybody to come out and play from experienced improvisors to people who have never tried improv ever. We leave judgments at the door and make it a night of support and fun!

Would you rather just watch? No worries! Getting onstage is completely optional. We encourage guests to try out improv, but no one is ever forced onstage. You get to go at your own pace.

1st Friday of the Month at 7:00pm PST

Tuition: $5

20 Participant Limit

Ages: 18+

Prerequisite: No experience necessary.

*The Playground Improv Jam meets on Zoom. You will receive the login info the morning of the event.
*A jam is not a class.  There is no instruction aside from explanation of games and formats.  No notes are given at this event.  It’s all about playing and having fun.

We are happy to address some Frequently Asked Questions about our improv classes.  Do you have other questions?
Feel free to send us a message and we’ll respond as soon as possible.

How does an online class work?

Made Up Theatre classes will meet via Zoom.  We ask you to please download the app on your device of choice (laptop, computer, phone, or tablet).  Students will communicating in class via microphone and webcam.  You will receive a link to join the online class one day prior to the first session.  All classes are Pacific Standard Time (PST).

What is improv?

Improv is a style of acting, where the performers do not have scripts or pre-planning.  They improvise material on the spot, usually based on suggestions or inspiration from the audience.  Two types of improv exist: short form and long formShort form improv is a fast-paced style that includes games and skits that have pre-determined rules attached to them.  Short form improv is commonly seen on the TV show “Whose Line Is It, Anyway?” or our main stage show Laugh Track CityLong form improv features longer formats that range from a series of scenes inspired by a specific opener to the show to improvised plays, movies, and musicals.

Why should I take an improv class?

Improv classes have many benefits!  You might think only comedians or actors take improv class, and sure, they do but most people learn improvisation for other reasons.  Here are a few of the biggest benefits of learning the art of improvisation.

  • Improve public speaking skills.
  • Learn to think quickly and get out of your head.
  • Overcome shyness or anxiety.
  • Become a better and more active listener.
  • Meet new friends.
  • Discover new things about yourself.

What can I expect from my first improv class?

Improv classes might seem intimidating, because you do not know what to expect. You might think, “Oh no! Am I going to have to go onstage on the first class? Do I have to be funny?” However, we are here to relieve stress and anxiety and give you some info on what to expect.  Here’s what to expect on the first day.

  • You’ll play warm-up games and exercises. Our instructors do not want to put anyone on the spot, and we recognize that new students may come to the 1st session with anxiety.  The beginning of the first day of class involves warm up games and exercises that are done as a group.  The games focus on getting outside of your head, being OKAY with making mistakes, bonding with your new classmates, and just having FUN.
  • You do not need to be funny. Sure, improv is associated with comedy, but we consider comedy a byproduct of improv and not the goal.  The goal of improv is collaboration, acceptance, and fun.  If you think you’re going to have to tell jokes or be funny, don’t worry!  In fact, we discourage intentionally trying to be funny.  You will naturally be funny by following the fundamentals of improvisation.
  • You will fail a lot. This sounds like a negative, but it is one of the biggest positives of improv.  People naturally fear failure, and it can even discourage us from trying.  But in improv, we encourage failure! There are no scripts in improv, so we treat mistakes as gifts rather than shortcomings. In short, failure is fun in our class system!
  • You will have fun. Enough said!  Many students have told us that improv is the highlight of their week.  Join the FUN!

Do I need any performance/comedy experience?

Nope! Our beginning improv classes are aimed at those who have never done improv before. Most students in our beginning classes have no performance experience, so do not fret!

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