Improvised scene work is one of the most difficult and rewarding experiences in the entertainment world. A great improv scene is more than two people standing on stage talking; it engages the audience and takes them somewhere. Strong scene work is essential for advancing your improv career.
Scenic Improv 1 is an advanced improv class for people looking for a different improv class experience. This course focuses on the mechanics of a good scene. Good scenes don’t happen by accident; here you will learn why some scenes succeed and some scenes fail.
This advanced course will teach you to be a better improviser by concentrating on good scene work. You will focus on using your environment and progressing the action of a scene. The Scenic Improv classes are where you learn there is more to great improv than simply getting a laugh or being funny.
This class is all about giving you ample time to do scene work. It’s mileage that makes you a master, and this is a class will give you the repetition you need to make scene work come naturally.
Scenic Improv 1 meets once a week for three hours over an eight week term. It is open to students who have completed Improv Level E, Improv for Actors 2, or one year of improv training with Training Center approval.
Scenic Improv 2 is an advanced improv class for people who want to improve their basic improv skills. This class focuses on improving your individual skills and building the performance tools you need to build great scenes. This class will heighten your believability on stage.
Whereas Scenic Improv 1 taught you what makes a good scene, Scenic Improv 2 focuses on your skills on how to execute that scene. It sharpens your acting skills. It teaches you ways to convey emotion on stage. It also focuses on character development.
Exercises in Scenic Improv 2 include some classic acting and character development techniques. In addition there are exercises specifically designed to improve these techniques in an improvised setting. And, of course, there will be plenty of scene work for you to practice these skills.
Scenic Improv 2 meets once a week for three hours over seven weeks. Please note the starting dates as this class usually begins in the second week of a term. This class is open to students who have completed Scenic Improv 1 or have entered the Conservatory.
The Long Form Improv program explores the kind of improv where a group of performers takes one suggestion and creates a theatrical piece inspired by it.
Intro to Long Form – In the first level students will explore group mind and what it means to create a piece by ensemble. Warm Ups, Openings, Games, and structures will all focus on team work to prepare students for the long haul. The most popular and common forms will be studied.
Long Form 1 meets once a week for three hours over an eight week term. It is open to students who have completed Improv Level E, Improv for Actors 2, or one year of improv training with Training Center approval.
Advanced Long Form – Level 2 will focus on the more difficult forms that exists. Scene Work will be the staple to help students populate the scenes that live inside their long form structure. Call backs, time dashes, patterns, connections, and character will also be emphasized.
Long Form Improv 2 is open to students who have completed Long Form Improv 1. It meets once a week for three hours over an eight week term.
Form Creation – Open to students of the Second City Training Center Long Form program or equivalent programs who would like to form an ensemble to create new long form or master an existing one. There will be a performance component to demonstrate the form.
Long Form Improv 3 meets once a week for three hours over an eight week term.
Whether you’re a seasoned performer or new to improvisation, these acting lessons incorporate seamlessly into anyone’s base improv knowledge and experience. Students need only bring a willingness to explore the serious business of being funny while not taking themselves too serious in the process.
That’s Not Funny: Dramatic Improv 1 is for anyone looking to take comedic scene work seriously by creating honest moments that lead to big laughs. By laying this authentic groundwork in improvisation, deeper meaning and bona fide acting will become a reliable way to approach improvisation. When improvising scenes for entertainment or for sketch generation, making honest and grounded choices yields high-level theatre. Learning how to initiate and sustain genuine scenes produces powerful and remarkable work that easily translates to improved and exceptional material.
Students focus on real character interaction by approaching scene creation seriously. This leads to a richer assembly of characters and truly satisfying moments that not only drive scene work, but also give it greater significance.
Students acquire new tools to build substantive scenes. Whether a seasoned performer or new to improvisation, these acting lessons incorporate seamlessly into anyone’s base improv knowledge and experience. Students need only bring a willingness to explore the serious business of being funny while not taking themselves too serious in the process.
Dramatic Improv 1 meets once a week for three hours over four weeks. It is open to students who have completed at least Improv Level C or its equivalent in a comparable program.
While the first level focused on slowing down and grounding improvisation, this class will explore the building of dramatic tension and its subsequent release. The Second City style of improvisation, whether for entertainment or for sketch generation, is founded in honest, smart and grounded choices. Learning how to intensify the dramatic rise of scenes delivers strong, resonant work that easily translates high-level art.
Students expand on how to approach dramatic scene by incorporating acting lessons that increase the drama of their improv which yield large laughs and even more meaningful moments. The course instruction incorporates theatrical techniques and devices that help students build up, feel, and let loose emotional gravity.
Students add to the tools garnered from That’s Not Funny: Dramatic Improv 1 through acting lessons and exercises designed to ramp up the weightiness of their improvisation. There’s even a focus on how to approach Stage Combat seriously and safely.
Dramatic Improv 2 meets once a week for three hours over four weeks.
In the Diagnostics workshop you will be individually evaluated to find your own particular, unique improvising issues and work towards FIXING them. Call it a crutch, call it a bag of tricks, whatever you call it you’ll move past the issues and free up your improv potential.
Diagnostics is taught by…
Improv veteran Rene Duquesnoy leads participants on an 4-week crash course, giving insight and training how to approach short form in a professional environment. Students will get the most out of improv games and sharpen up hosting skills. Learn to customize games for any setting.
Games Games Games is open…
Notes, Notes, Notes gives advanced students the chance to get structured and direct feedback on scene work at the highest level. Curriculum will be specifically tailored to the needs of the ensemble and individual students.
Notes, Notes, Notes is open to students who have completed Improv Level E, Improv for Actors…
In Solo Sketch students of the craft will create compelling characters by improvising with specific goals, then craft structurally sound, multi-layered scenes and monologues for their characters. In this process of development students will also focus on joke structure,…
“The techniques of the theater are the techniques of communicating.” – Viola Spolin
Rooted in this Spolin idea, this Technique for Unique Characters class deconstructs characters by examining the 24 major nonverbal communication codes displayed by every character – consciously or unconsciously. By learning these codes and learning…
The Second City Training Center offers individual, customized coaching in a variety of areas including, but not limited to:
On-camera audition prep
Dialects Accent Coaching
Youth & Teen Coaching
Advanced sketch critique
Screenplay & Sitcom coaching
Sketch Production (Coaching a group through their first production)
Sketch generation & critique…
The Second City Training Center now offers team improv and sketch coaching. This service is available at or in the vicinity of any of our three Training Centers (Chicago, Hollywood, Toronto) and also available via Skype. Our team coaches are all skilled instructors and directors that have worked with Second…