An hour of play discovers more than a year of conversation. – Anonymous

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 1pm – 3pm

Monthly Improv Show

Every Second Saturday 8pm

Next show: January 13, 2018

Offerings

Offerings

Weekly Improv Jam
Sundays 1pm – 3pm
Open to improvisors of all levels!
Monthly Improv Show
Every Second Saturday 8pm
We also have an open troupe jam before the show at 6:30pm. It is open to all, and you can stay and watch the show for free!
Beginning to Intermediate Improv Class
Ongoing on Sundays from 3pm to 5pm
Drop-ins welcome.

Intermediate to Advanced Improv Class
Ongoing on Wednesdays from 8pm to 10pm
Drop-ins welcome.
Cost
Sunday Jam: $10
Open Troupe Jam: $10 (includes show!)
Monthly Show: $10
Class drop-in: $20
Class monthly dues: $75 (includes all jams!)
Location
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

Tickets

Tickets

Alice & Bonny scene
Oaktown Improv Show
Saturday, January 13, 2018, 8:00pm
Our goal is to surprise, entertain and provoke audiences by creating funny, moving and unpredictable improvisational theater.
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.
$10
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.
$20
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.
$20
Date (optional):

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

Coaches

Andrew Pearce
Andrew Pearce

Andrew studied and performed in the Calgary improv scene for eight years under Keith Johnstone at Loose Moose Theatre. There he helped form a number of comedy troupes including Late Night Comedy with future members of Kids In The Hall, and The Seventh Funniest Comedy Show in the World. He subsequently moved to Toronto where he continued study at Second City and short stints with the Committee in San Francisco. In Toronto, Andrew performed improv, sketch, stand-up, and most notably formed Fred’s Bicycle Repair Shop which performed sketches written via improv at over 400 shows, including a 1999 CBC TV special. Andrew teaches a character motivation-driven approach to improvizational theater, informed by both Keith Johnstone’s and Mick Napier’s approaches.

Andrew Pearce
Michael Davenport
Michael Davenport

Michael teaches and performs Chicago-style long form improvisational theater, focusing on creating strong characters, deep connections between scene partners, and scenes that are funny and moving. Michael studied and performed in the Chicago improv scene for ten years, including performances at Second City, the Annoyance Theater, Improv Olympic and the Playground. A highlight of that time was putting together an improv troupe called Melange that performed for six weeks at Second City. His greatest improvisation influence is Mick Napier, founder of the Annoyance Theater and director at Second City, with whom he studied for four years. He has also studied Meisner acting technique with Kathy Scambiatterra at The Artistic Home in Chicago, and has studied bringing physicality to scripted work with James Wagner at Berkeley Rep School of Theatre.

Michael Davenport
Ben Yates
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 feels at home playing with Oaktown Improv, with its open and supportive long-form style. About improv, Ben says, “This really is the most fun you can have with your clothes on.” When it comes to teaching, Ben believes in always returning to a foundation of human truth and emotional honesty.

Ben Yates

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

Oaktown Improv