Frequently Asked Questions
Improvisation, or improv, is a form of live theater in which the plot, characters and dialogue of a game, scene or story are made up in the moment. Improv players will often take a suggestion from the audience as a source of inspiration to get the party started. Have more questions? It’s okay to have questions… and we hope to have the answers! If you have a question we haven’t addressed, please ask us!
No. Even though they both can be in the improv realm, stand-up comedy is generally scripted. It’s delivered solo in telling jokes. Improv comedy is a “team sport” in that everyone works together, without a script, to create funny scenes and circumstances! Improv often relies on suggestions from the audience to launch scenes.
Absolutely not! The Outcasters’ improv classes are committed to assisting folks from every walk of life to learn, enjoy and experience the skills of improv comedy. No previous experience, acting or otherwise, is required to attend our classes. We treat our students with kindness and respect!
Absolutely not! We improvise every day, almost all day. Anybody and everybody can do improv, as long as you’re willing to say, “Yes, and …”
We don’t strive to make you a funny person, but will teach you the fundamental and advanced skills of improvisation, making it easier for you to engage in scenes and relationships on stage. As improv becomes easier, you will become a better human being and comedy will be the hilarious by-product. You will see a change in the way you look at the world! If you’re not ready for that, then take a pottery class.
Don’t be! We embrace new students and support you in every way possible. We are a non-judgmental group of fun-seekers, led by Joe Hammer, a professional improv director who adheres to a safe, respectful, and non-judgmental setting. No egos. No harassment. No criticism. Just progressive improv training in a positive environment!
Our weekly classes are held on a “drop in” basis. Class sizes vary, however you can expect between 10 and 30 participants. The drop in classes are $10, payable via cash or credit card. More in-depth short and long form classes and workshops are also available. These specialized Improv classes and workshops are limited to 15 participants to allow more in-depth and personalized instruction. Please register for classes here.
Classes are held on Wednesday evenings, starting at 6:00 pm and concluding at 8:30 pm. We start and end on time. Doors close at 6:05, so don’t be late! Late arrivals are disruptive to the class so please plan on arriving at least 10 minutes prior to the scheduled start time. This also gives you and your fellow classmates a chance to catch up on life before class. You’ll discover class time going by quickly and you’ll likely be a little sad when it’s over! We go through the many principles, including exercises and games, followed up with a debrief and group conversation to make sure you fully understand the lessons/takeaways. This class is highly fascinating and you will be actively engaged! FYI, if you are not feeling well, we request you respect the health of your fellow classmates and stay home. Please register for classes here.
Absolutely! Improv increases both confidence as well as listening skills, both valuable for everyone in their life and career. Improv training also encourages risk-taking, a skill many have lost. Improvisation abilities also eliminates the dreaded “stage fright” many experience when in front of an audience.
Yes! The best improvisation is a combination of sharp communication skills, creative problem solving and playful teamwork. These are the very same skills valued in the workplace, except they are employed in the conference room or client dinner instead of in front of a sold-out crowd. For more information on our progressive improv training for organizations, check out our Corporate Training page.
The standard path to performing with us is to attend all classes, actively participate in training and audition for performance opportunities. This process is highly-competitive, thus we place importance on the finer points of improv theater. The troupe size is limited, however we always introduce guest “feature” performers in our shows. Our feature performers are students who have shown impressive improv skills from attending our classes. We also hold occasional student showcases, where our newer members have the opportunity to perform in their own venue!
If you’d like to sample our class, we occasionally offer a free 90 minute trial class to dip your toes into the fascinating world of Improv Comedy. You’ll be guided through a few inspiring activities and exercises from our curriculum. Join our mailing list to be advised of any upcoming trial classes. However, at the cost of only $10 for our weekly 2 1/2 hour drop-in classes offer more benefits – such as longer class time and experiencing “real world” improv techniques by The Outcasters Troupe members and long-time class members. Note: We require registration for drop in classes. Please register here.
Don’t bring a cathedral to a scene.
Bring a brick and let’s build together.
– Del Close