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Classes

The Improv Embassy runs improv and sketch classes in Ottawa for those wanting to learn comedy in a fun, supportive environment. With improv, walking onstage with nothing written down may seem daunting, but it’s a lot easier than it sounds — plus you’ll spend all class laughing! You’ll learn skills that will make you better at public speaking, get you out of your comfort zone and kick-start your creativity.

Never tried improv before? This is the perfect introduction! We’ll work on teamwork, listening and presentation skills through fun improv games. It’s a great way to improve your public speaking, have fun and meet new people.

Wednesdays, 7 to 9 pm, September 5 to 26 (with Gilbert El-Dick)
Saturdays, noon to 2 pm, September 8 to 29 (with Jesse Henneberry and Chris Hannay)
Wednesdays, 7 to 9 pm, October 3 to 24 (with TBD)
Saturdays, noon to 2 pm, October 6 to 27 (with TBD)

*PLEASE NOTE*: The September and October classes will be taught at Arts Court, on the first floor in the Ottawa Arts Council offices.

This class is four weeks, two hours per session. $100 (+HST)

Early Bird prices until August 20!

This class is all about truth in comedy. You will learn to generate unique characters through status, emotion and mining real life for ideas. You’ll learn the Armando, a format that combines scenework and storytelling.

Thursdays, 6:30 to 9 pm, September 6 to October 25 (with Krystal Merrells)
Sundays, 3 to 5:30 pm, September 9 to October 28 (with Krystal Merrells)

*PLEASE NOTE*: The September and October classes will be taught at Arts Court, on the first floor in the Ottawa Arts Council offices.

Eight weeks, 2.5 hours per class, one class show. $205 (+HST)

Early Bird prices until August 20!

Instructor: Krystal Merrells

This class is all about creating killer improv scenes. We delve deep into the dynamics of a scene, working on building strong relationships between characters, making the most of our stage presence and escalating humour by finding the “game” of the scene.

Saturdays, 3 to 5:30 pm, September 8 to October 27 (with Deborah Ring)

*PLEASE NOTE*: The September and October classes will be taught at Arts Court, on the first floor in the Ottawa Arts Council offices.

Eight weeks, 2.5 hours per class, one class show. $205 (+HST)

Instructor: Deborah Ring

This class is all about the ensemble. You will learn to navigate scenes with multiple characters, work on developing the group mind with your ensemble, and find how your unique comedic voice can best serve your team.

Sundays, noon to 2:30 pm, September 9 to October 28 (with Dani Alon)

*PLEASE NOTE*: The September and October classes will be taught at Arts Court, on the first floor in the Ottawa Arts Council offices.

Eight weeks, 2.5 hours per class, one class show. $205 (+HST)

Instructor: Dani Alon
Longform Improv 401
Not offered next term.

Now it’s time to put everything you’ve learned together to perform the granddaddy of all longform improv formats: The Harold. The ensemble learns to create a rich, comedic world with strong characters in an entertaining half-hour set. This classic format, from which most others are derived, is performed regularly at such institutions as the iO Theatre in Chicago and Upright Citizens Brigade in New York City.

Next dates coming soon!

Eight weeks, three hours per class, two class shows. $220 (+HST).

Instructor: Chris Hannay
Longform Improv 501
Not offered next term.

This is where we get into the really bold stuff. Expanding on the previous class, this level will build on the Harold and explore advanced techniques, as well as other Chicago improv formats like the Deconstruction, JTS Brown, and Cat’s Cradle.

Next dates coming soon!

Eight weeks, three hours per class, two class shows. $220 (+HST)

Instructor: Dani Alon
Sketch Comedy Writing
Not offered next term.

From Saturday Night Live to Kids in the Hall to Key and Peele, sketch has been one of the most vibrant avenues for comedy. Students will learn how to generate ideas from real life and current events, how to structure their sketches for maximum payoff, and how to polish their work. Warning: Weekly homework will be assigned to give you the excuse you’ve been looking for to start writing!

Next dates coming soon!

Classes are eight weeks, 2.5 hours per class, one or two class shows. $205 (+HST)

Instructor: Deborah Ring

How about some discounts?

  • Sign up before August 20 to get our 10% Early Bird discount!
  • Sign up for an Intro to Improv class with a friend and save $20! Just purchase more than one at a time and enter the coupon code “FRIENDS” at checkout. Email us if you have any questions.
  • Want to retake a class? You can take a class again and meet a new group of students, all for 50% off the regular class price. Email us for more info.
  • Our Inclusion Scholarship lets students from underrepresented communities and/or those with financial need to apply for subsidized classes. Deadline before the next term is August 27.

And some class policies:

  • In general, we require a minimum of 6 people registered to run a class.
  • Participants should be 18 or older to sign up; interested parties under 18 should have a parent or guardian contact us.
  • Students who miss more than two days of a class may not be eligible to advance to the next level.
  • Please aim to arrive 10 minutes early to ensure class starts on time. If you’re going to be late or absent, email the teacher so they can adjust, as a courtesty to them and your classmates.
  • Refunds: in fairness to others who couldn’t secure spots, full refunds can only be made before the first class. After the first class and before the second you may get a 50% refund. If you register for a class but find your availability changes, you can defer a class till the next term only. (For any of the above requests, a $25 admin fee will be charged)

I really enjoyed being in a space that celebrates punching up and encourages inclusion!

Lindsay S.

The folks at The Improv Embassy are the reason I was able to finally try stand up comedy. They host great shows and workshops and are super inclusive with a strong belief that comedy should “punch up”.

Jennifer W.
Civil Servant

I took this to push myself into having to interact with strangers. I have succeeded in pushing myself out of my box and that’s all that matters. Improv is beautiful and I’m in awe of what people can come up with!

John M.
Radio Host

I have taken multiple public speaking workshops and I found the Improv Embassy to be the most helpful and practical. My ability to speak publicly with confidence has dramatically improved.

Ranna B.
Analyst

A welcoming, positive environment to step out of your comfort zone.

Marianne K.

It was a great experience and a chance to let go of the mundane, and meet new people.

Michelle S.
Teacher

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