Workshop Details

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Workshops at TIR 2019!

Tenured Counselors


Be Here Now
A presence practice workshop that is welcoming us home to connection, active engagement, and caregiving to our scenic partner and removing blocks that may be stunting our possibility together in scenework. Part lecture, predominantly practice, partly discussion – sit with yourself in this popular course to check in and take inventory on how much discovery is left for you on an artistic path. (20 spots)

Advanced Musical Scene & Song
Need help pushing emotion, joy, and infusing your musical work with professionality? Come learn from HERE the Musical’s Tara DeFrancisco for scenic coaching inside 2 person or ensemble improvisation. (Must take Improvised Musicality with David Schmoll Friday to register for this course as new camper, or have TIR Music experience from 2018 camp with Colby and Schmoll to enroll/no exceptions) (16 spots)

No Problem! (Peas In a Pod)
My favorite scenes to coach, watch, and play within is when we drop conflict and further our relationship with one another. This class will focus on the alchemy of two characters getting together without the externalization of an outside problem to drive the scene. Point of View and the delicious ambiguity of two characters intersecting will be the only focus during our time together. Nothing to solve, relationships to delight. (16 spots)


Fully Loaded
What if we could just be people with emotions and trust that those emotions didn’t need to be “solved”? (16 spots)

Everyone Always
No side lines. No group scenes. Yet still, everyone always. There is something else. Come make the joyful madness in this class. (16 spots)


Lights Out
Good improv grows out of great listening. And since, some say the loss of one sense awakens the others, this workshop is done without sight. Do fun activities to awaken trust in your body, your ears, and your partners. We’ll bring your hidden skills to life. Want to shut the lights out? (16 spots)

Making Up Movies
You’ll make an improvised movie, from concept to editing. We’ll take the concepts of improvisation and put them in front of the camera. This workshop can add to your reel. (16 spots)

I love to help people find their passion project. It’s powerful to see someone reconnect with their own inspiration, and push forward into creation mode. In this workshop, we’ll do some simple fun activities to find a project for your future, and write up a simple plan to get it started. Ideas are welcome. Let’s find your next fun project. (20 spots)


Solo Improv in a Group Setting
Interested in dipping your toe in some solo improv? There’s no better way than in a supportive group! Come push yourself to play outside your comfort zone in a safe place. (16 spots)

Seeds of Inspiration
Finding Inspiration in an uninspiring world. The world can be dark and frustrating – how do we use that to create art so that it doesn’t pull us down but instead gives us something to hold onto? Using the tools of improvisation and collaborative conversation we will create. (16 spots)


Red Light District
Come take a walk on the dark side of town and explore a side of your improv game that you didn’t know that you had in you, dramatic improvisation! This workshop will push you to the edge in committing to your choices and connecting with your scene partners, verbally, physically and emotionally. Deep, intense and not for the faint of heart, go all in and take a trip to the Red Light District! (16 spots)

Improvised Monologues
So you think you know how to do an improvised monologue? Think again! In Improvised Monologues you will create rich and real monologues that will immediately captivate and seduce audiences, and leave them (and you) wanting more. Whether you want to perform one as a standalone performance, in a longform piece, or even as part of a scene, learn how to instantly build characters, develop points of view and end monologues that you might swear were actually written! (20 spots)

Organic Narrative
Getting stuck trying to make honest choices while building a narrative in your improv? Feel like your narrative improv is getting stale? Want to go on journeys as your characters instead of thinking about plot? Organic Narrative is all about making honest character and emotional choices and exploring where they will take you next. With solid beginnings, middles and ends Organic Narrative will get you improvising the greatest stories every told! (16 spots)


No Humans
Group scenes and games as non-humans. Learn how to navigate within group scenes and learn about relationship, all as non- human characters the whole time! (16 spots)

Mirror Mirror
Where do you end and your scene partner begin? Match up and learn how to instantly expand your own characters and personal energies per scene. Learn how to mirror scene partners and quickly synch up! (16 spots)

Scene Chain
A highly participatory cast long form piece using elements of old school ‘swinging door’ and ‘tag out’ theories combined with simple rigid ‘give and take’ .This longform piece is like and snowball turning into an avalanche that causes a giant snowballvala!nche!! Focus on character plot and theme all at once. (16 spots)


Learn some of the basic skills that help improvisers write sketch. This on your feet workshop focuses on three main concepts: scene construction, repetition, and collaboration. With these skills you can build quality sketch comedy scenes that are unique, fresh and engaging. With over 15 years performing and directing sketch comedy professionally (Village Theatre, The Second City, Boom Chicago), Arch is always excited to teach this workshop at TIR each summer. (16 spots)

No rules, no lecture, no structure. Only “yes and” & “let’s go”. Come play with teacher Ryan Archibald in one long, strange, trippy long form that lasts the entire class with a short debrief discussion after the extended set. Trust yourself and others to make something beautiful, engaging and sustainable. If you came to camp to play and “just see where it goes”, this might be the workshop for you. Positive attitudes and a willingness to support a must! (16 spots)


Intuitive Treasure Hunter
Intuitive Treasure Hunter is a life-sized game that fosters self-trust, creative freedom, group support, and big joy. Played around Lake Beulah in groups of three—on foot or by car— ITH invites participants to attend to the life inside of them and the life around them with heightened awareness. Played at TIR since its inception, and at iO’s summer intensives for the past 5 years, Intuitive Treasure Hunter strengthens the part of you that knows the way, which leads to story-worthy adventures. (20 spots)

The Inside Story
Storytelling is a powerful tool that is used to sell cars, start wars, explain the movement of the stars, and pass on the wisdom of generations. In this workshop, we will explore some of the tools of good storytelling, and apply them to the truths that you most want to tell. Sometimes the things that matter most to us feel ineffable. This workshop will help you to put words to what matters. (16 spots)


Creating Characters
This workshop focuses on the development of character through environment work, body work, emotion, and the power of observation. By the end of this workshop you will have created at least three new characters to add to your tool belt. Join us and gain a better understanding of how to utilize characters to become more present in your improvisation. (16 spots)

Personal Feedback
This workshop is designed to illuminate your strengths and tendencies as an improviser and to push you to new heights. Lyndsay diagnoses your style through observing you in a patient two-person scene. Strengths and areas that could be strengthened will be illuminated and intense personal feedback will be given. You will then be issued a scenic challenge that will push you through your limitations and blocks and help you to find new heights in your performance. Come ready to break out of old patterns. Time to scare yourself! (14 spots)


Improvised Musicality
These are the main tenets of musical improv, and making your scene shine with song. Whether you practice a lot or have never done musical improv inside a professional show, let David give you steps to succeed and practice. (This class is a pre-req for Tara DeFrancisco’s Advanced Musical Scene & Song workshop.) (20 spots)

Improv for Musical Accompaniment
Are you hoping to be a MD in your home town? Want help and guidance and a chance to play under the tutelage of a longtime MD from Boom Chicago, Second City, and Nest Theatre? This class is an exploration of musical accompaniment (cabaret for longform) and driving a song (musical improv). We will be working with piano (provided) or an instrument you bring (guitar). (10 spots)



Physicality Work / Need some Space?
Learn how to utilize the magic of space work in your short form scenes. Who needs props when you have your body, hands & movement to create every thing you need to communicate in your short game or scene? You are a blank slate and able to do more than you think. Focus is on short scenes, but beneficial to longformers. (16 spots)


Makin’ Big Moves
We’re making our biggest moves yet! And we’re making them stage worthy. Get ready to create larger-than-life characters, develop farcical emotional relationships, and navigate surreal contexts that real humans will love all night long! (16 spots)


Joy Over Perfection
As improvisers and creatives, we can so easily fall into perfectionism which can block us from the fun of flowing. Through the use of our voices, bodies, and hearts, we will bust through the resistance we all hold, and have a dang blast! More specifics for you – big paper and sharpies free for all, ripping it up at the end, permission to sing terribly and loudly, dancing as silly as possible, and applying those feelings of freedom to some chill improv exercises. A great class for 2 years of improv or under, or seasoned people that need to re-engage. (16 spots)