Oaktown Improv Coronavirus Update

We won't be meeting in person again until all shelter-in-place orders have ended. Until then, all of our events have been replaced with online events through the Zoom app. Please see the web page below for connection details.

Here are two great web pages for information about the Coronavirus: Stanford Health Care & CDC.

Please continue to be safe and well!

Coronavirus Update

All Our Events – Including New Ones – Are on Zoom!

Before an event, the meeting link appears below:
No events taking place within the next 30 minutes.
You can see all our events on our Meetup calendar.
Our Zoom events are donation based (unless otherwise noted).
Please pay what you are able.
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About Us

About Us

Oaktown Improv is about truly expressing ourselves. It’s an outlet for expressing our inner promptings. It’s a place to learn to express ourselves more authentically, more consistently, and more powerfully.

We seek the joy in co-creation. When fellow players listen to each other, adjust to each other, build onto what the other is giving them, magic happens.

We endeavor to embody real people in real situations. Though we seek to arrive at it in a real way, our goal is comedy, remembering our own sense of humor and playfulness.

Yet we teach that you don’t have to be funny. “Humor is an ideal product of a good show”, say TJ Jagodowski and David Pasquesi in their book Improvisation at the Speed of Life. Humor is a often a natural side-effect of human beings making surprising choices on stage. It’s more important to focus on the reality and the relationship of these human beings than it is to be comedic.

Improv has benefits that go beyond the stage and into normal life. Besides being more able to express yourself, you may also grow to be more at ease in groups of people and be less overwhelmed by fears of public speaking. Some even report the principles of improv help them be more successful in business. Because of this, Oaktown Improv is committed to teaching others the way of improv, so they can discover their own joy and find the value of improv for themselves.

Weekly Improv Jam

Sundays 1 — 3pm

Monthly Improv Show

Every 2nd Saturday 8pm

Next show: November 14, 2020

In-Person Offerings


Weekly Improv Jam
Sundays 1 – 3pm
Open to improvisors of all levels!
Monthly Improv Show (and Jam)
Every Second Saturday 8pm
We also have a performer's jam before the show at 6:30pm. It is open to all, and you can stay and watch the show for free!
Sunday Drop-In Improv Class
Ongoing on Sundays from 3 to 5pm
All are welcome.

Wednesday Drop-In Improv Class
Ongoing on Wednesdays from 8 to 10pm
All are welcome.
Sunday Jam: $10
Performer's Jam: $10 (includes show!)
Monthly Show: $10
Class drop-in: $20
Monthly dues – one class: $80 (includes one class per week, all jams, the show and one comp for the show!)
Monthly dues – two classes: $140 (includes two classes per week, all jams, the show and one comp for the show!)
All of our events take place at the Temescal Art Center, 511 48th St. (at Telegraph Ave.), Oakland, CA.

Through spontaneity we are re-formed into ourselves. – Viola Spolin



Alice & Bonny perform a scene
Oaktown Improv Show (and Jam)
Saturday, November 14, 2020, 8:00pm
This also gets you admission into the performer’s jam at 6:30pm. Come for the jam, the show, or both!
General admission $10
Or, GET TICKETS on eventbrite.com
Sunday Improv Jam
Ongoing, Sundays, 1:00pm – 3:00pm
We warm up with improv games, then do improvised scenes with various partners. This is a fun and supportive environment open to all.
Date (optional):
Class Drop-in: Beginning to Intermediate
Ongoing, Sundays, 3:00pm – 5:00pm
This class is for those that have had an introduction to long-form improv and are ready to take their scenework skills to the next level. We warm up with short-form games and group-mind exercises, then engage in specific scene types designed to strengthen your ability to perform in scenes with varying tempo, emotion and character.
Date (optional):
Class Drop-in: Intermediate to Advanced
Ongoing, Wednesdays, 8:00pm – 10:00pm
This class is for those that are experienced with long-form improv and are motivated to take their scenework skills to the higher levels. We warm up with short-form games and group-mind exercises, then engage in specific scene types designed to strengthen your ability to perform in scenes with varying tempo, emotion and character.
Date (optional):

Discovery is a quest to uncover what is already there. – TJ & Dave


Heather Williamson - improv coach
Heather Williamson

Heather bounded onto the improv stage in 2016 with Oaktown Improv and, being a quick study, soon became a member of the in-house troupe ‘Fun Size“. With her bubbly enthusiasm and AI-like memory, Heather was a natural to start leading jams and classes in 2017. Heather's current claim-to-fame is that during a show, watching one of her favorite groups, ‘3 For All’, she was invited onto the stage where she summarily rocked it with song. Heather's improv philosophy is, “Bring it, pay attention, and kill it!”

Heather Williamson
Ben Yates - improv coach
Ben Yates

Ben began improvising in 1993. He has performed with various groups in the Bay Area, including The Clean Comedy Company, Pan Theater, BATS Sunday Players, ‘Trapped in a Rumor’, and his own ‘Zen Improv’. Ben's natural inclination has been to do character-based improv. He agrees with Jim Carrey who said that if not for his expressive outlet, “I'd be up on the roof with an Uzi!” When it comes to teaching, Ben believes in always returning to a foundation of human truth and emotional honesty.

Ben Yates
Timothy Duryea
Timothy Duryea

Timothy has performed as a troupe player in his hometown of Spokane, at the collegiate level with Southern Oregon University's ‘Next Best Thing’, and is a member of Oaktown Improv's ‘Offsides’. Tim has infused comedy into many other forms of performance including sketch teams, radio programs, and his live musical acts. His improv heroes include Ben Schwarts, Paul F. Tompkins and Andy Daly. At the Sunday open jams, Tim serves as a guide to help players create scenes with real emotions and real stakes.

Timothy Duryea

The teeny weeniest emotional discovery that's real beats the hell out of the biggest one that's phony. – Del Close

Contact Us

Contact us

Oakland Improv Community