The Bend Institute of Comedy offers classes in Longform Comedy Improvisation. Improv is an art form that stands on its own, with its own discipline and aesthetics. We all go through life every day without a script, responding to our environment, making it up as we go along. Improvising on stage is obviously a little different -- the performers are trying to create while entertaining an audience. At a typical longform improv show, one audience suggestion is taken at the beginning, then the fun begins as the group improvises a 30-minute set where the world unfolds, characters are created, comedic themes are explored, amplified, and connected.
Our improv classes focus on honest, grounded scene work, where finding, heightening, and expanding the Game (or hook) of the scene are critical, as developed by Del Close and Charna Halpern at iO Chicago and the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York City and Los Angeles.
Improv classes at the Bend Institute of Comedy are taught by John Breen. John expertly trains his students to be highly cooperative improvisers, with the ability to build a cohesive improv set that relentlessly escalates to a hilarious climax. He encourages his students to care for one another, to be open, decisive, energetic, and authentic. John is constantly striving to build confidence in his students through the approach of Deliberate Practice, created by psychologist Anders Ericsson. This entails rigorous skills training, mental development, honest, authoritative feedback, all the while maintaining an air of lightness, love and excitement. This is why BIC has some of the best improv classes in Oregon!
Our next improv class series is happening January 2023! It is for beginner to advanced improvisers who want to learn the BIC approach to improv. It will cover vital aspects such as how to Listen Like a Wolf, Get Open and Stay Open, Establish a Base Reality, Play with Heart, Make Powermoves, Find and Play the Game, and Have Fun While Avoiding Trying to Be Funny!
LONGFORM COMEDY IMPROVISATION
6-WEEK SERIES 2023!
Jan 14 - Feb 18
Saturdays 10:30am -12:30pm
Holiday Discount: $190 Paid in full by Dec 15
$225 Full Tuition Dec 16 - Jan 14
Open Space Event Studios
220 NE Lafayette Ave. Bend, Oregon
To REGISTER and Join Our MAILING LIST...
Classes are non-refundable. We do not allow more than two absences per series. You must be 18 years of age or older to sign up for this course. Bend Institute of Comedy reserves the right to accept or deny any individual's application. Bend Institute of Comedy reserves the right to postpone or cancel class if it does not reach a minimum number of students.
We recommend that everyone who takes classes with us be vaccinated, but we do not require a vaccination card. Masks are not required, but if wearing one makes you more comfortable feel free to do so. If in the days leading up to a workshop or class you think your health might be compromised, or you are feeling ill, please do not attend the workshop. We will gladly refund your tuition. Thank you!
CORPORATE TEAM BUILDING
John has also been leading team-building workshops for years. He can help a small department or an entire company become more cohesive, communicative, effective and creative!
HUMOR COMES FROM PLAYFULNESS
PLAYFULNESS COMES FROM WARMTH
WARMTH COMES FROM CONFIDENCE
CONFIDENCE COMES FROM OPENNESS
Classes at the Bend Institute of Comedy are taught by John Breen. His track record speaks for itself. Breen has been teaching and performing for over 25 years. His background is full of film/TV/Stage credits, and comedy festival appearances. Below is a bullet point list of fun stuff. Enjoy these great bullet points!
Wendy and Lucy, Untraceable, Something Wicked, The Auteur
Late Night with Conan O'Brien, Portlandia, Leverage, Upright Citizens Brigade
Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre - New York City, Los Angeles
Del Close Marathon - New York City
Comedysportz - Portland
Vancouver Comedy Festival
San Francisco Sketchfest
The Liberators & Bang + Burn - Portland
Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre - New York City
T. Schreiber Studio - New York City
Comedysportz - Portland
Margie Haber Studio - Los Angeles
Anthony Meindl's Actor Workshop - Los Angeles
The Brody Theater - Portland
Annoyance Theatre - Chicago
Loose Moose Theatre - Alberta
photo by bmacstudio.com
LONGFORM IMPROV COMEDY LINEAGE
Del Close and Charna Halpern created an improv comedy dynasty in Chicago. Del become an improv guru, training many of our most notable comedic actors: Dan Akroyd, John Belushi, Matt Besser, John Candy, Stephen Colbert, Rachel Dratch, Chris Farley, Jon Favreau,
Tina Fey, Adam McKay, Bill Murray, Mike Myers,
Bob Odenkirk, Amy Poehler, Gilda Radner, Ian Roberts, Amy Sedaris, Jason Sudeikis,
Vince Vaugh, Matt Walsh.
Soon after the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre was opened in New York City by Besser, Poehler, Roberts and Walsh, it was clear they were building their own comedy empire, producing a new wave of comedy stars:
John Ross Bowie, Kurt Braunohler, Rob Corddry, Andy Daly, Jon Daly, Ilana Glazer,
Donald Glover, Ed Helms, Brian Huskey, Abbi Jacobson, Ellie Kemper, Nick Kroll,
Jason Mantzoukas, Kate McKinnon, Seth Morris, Ego Nwodim, Jordan Peele,
Aubrey Plaza, Rob Riggle, Ben Schwartz, Zach Woods.
John Breen's improv expertise comes from decades of hard work, training with some of the country's best teachers and directors for over two decades, including 3 years under the tutelage of Del Close proteges and founders of the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre,
Matt Besser, Amy Poehler, Ian Roberts, Matt Walsh and Armando Diaz.
Other prominent students of Del Close, Armando Diaz and Ali Farahnakian, opened their own successful comedy theaters in New York City -- The People's Improv Theater and Magnet Theater.