The Pack’s core Improv and Sketch Programs represent what we consider to be the foundations for good performers and writers. We also offer elective workshops throughout the year because a good performer never stops learning. Our electives help students expand their performance abilities and refine their understanding of different approaches to the work. Our commitment to adjustment, adaptation and evolution is what separates The Pack Theater from other comedy schools.
ALL IMPROV – February 2020
Instructor: Brian James O’Connell
4 Weeks – $220
|ALL IMPROV||Saturdays||2-5pm||Pack Theater||February 8th|
ALL IMPROV is an improv workshop that is designed for the improv veteran beyond the need for training levels, the scripted veteran looking to add improv to their professional tool kit, the trained actor looking to dive deeper between the lines of the text and the filmmaker who needs to kickstart their production output.
This is a 4 week, 12 hour advanced intensive covering the various ways improv can be utilized by a working creative in the industry. No matter whether you are doing theater, sketch, stand-up, film/television writing or animation, it is “all improv”.
Class size is a maximum of 10 students. Tuition comes with an exclusive written companion expanding on the material covered in class; over 100 pages including 300+ links to video examples, complementary books/articles and widely available free tools (websites, forums, software, etc.) for a one-stop-shop personal creative studio.
WEEK 1: DECON & BEYOND: Play With Anyone
Understand show structure discipline and the practical application of these skills to all of your future improvised/scripted work by learning the form & philosophy of The Deconstruction. Play with anyone, anytime, anywhere in the world.
WEEK 2: NARRATIVE STRUCTURE: Genre & Production Value
We dive into linear and non-linear storytelling by focusing on the specifics of genre, the responsibilities of plot and their corresponding production value needs. Demand more from your live shows and never question your place in the story ever again.
WEEK 3: DEVELOPING MATERIAL: Your Portfolio
Working in the entertainment field means you are constantly working. Use improv to develop ideas of the appropriate scope & length for feature films, television pilots, web series, animated series and narrative podcasts. Improv is an important tool in and out of the room when the inevitable question is asked: “What else you got?”
WEEK 4: COLLABORATION: Film Studio In A Box
In the final week, we explore the ways improv is used in the writer’s room, on set and in the editing suite. Each student submits one (1) project they are currently struggling with and the group will “fix it” in the room using the skills from the previous weeks.
Improv is not something you do while you wait for your career to happen. Improv is something you use to make your career happen.
All Improv-Sat 2-5pm, PT, Starts Feb 8th
CHARACTER WORKSHOP WITH JOHN MILHISER! Jan/Feb 2020!
Instructor: John Milhiser
8 weeks: $320
|Character Workshop||Saturdays||11-2pm||Pack Theater||January 11th|
A Characters Workshop with John Milhiser is here to help you create, develop and perform funny original characters. Yes, there will be plenty of wigs in this class, but this workshop will teach you how to think beyond the wigs. So much so, that you won’t even want the wigs. Or at the very least, a lot fewer wigs. This workshop will focus on developing the game, physical movement and voice of each sketch character — even if they don’t have a literal voice. This class will focus on finding the funny in everyday life and how to transition that successfully to the stage. Each student will be required to develop characters outside of class as well as in. By the end of the workshop each student will get to perform a full set of newly written characters in front of an audience.
Character WS-Sat 11-2pm, PT, Starts Jan 11th, Character WS-Sat 2-5pm, PT, Starts Jan 11th
Stand Up Class – Jan/Feb 2020!
Instructor: Gary Petersen
8 Weeks – $320
|Stand Up Class||Tuesdays||7-10pm||TBD||January 7th|
Class description: Writing and performing stand-up comedy. This class will focus on joke writing, developing your creative process, performance basics, and a student showcase at the Pack Theater once the class has completed! (Date TBD)
Stand Up-Tues 7-10pm, TBD, Starts Jan 7th
VOICE OVER – Jan/Feb 2020!
Instructor: Robin Reed
8 Weeks – $320
|Voice Over||Tuesdays||7-10pm||Library||January 7th|
This foundational class is a hands-on, deeply practical approach to adding voiceover to your performance career. Alternating weekly between commercial and animation copy, we will work on the mic to discover and fine tune what you uniquely bring to a script. You’ll learn exactly what info you need from a spec for commercial, and how to bring what you already do on stage to a cartoon script. We’ll also discuss the business, how it’s changed, what to avoid, and how to get your career off the ground.
Voice Over-Tues 7-10pm, LIBRARY, Starts Jan 7th
PILOT SEASON WORKSHOP – Feb 2020 ONE-DAY-ONLY!
Instructor: Victor Samuel Lopez
|Pilot Season Workshop||Sunday||11-2pm||Pack Theater||February 9th|
PILOT SEASON WORKSHOP -Auditioning for TV Dramas and Single-Camera Sitcoms.
There is a difference between being a good actor/performer and a good auditioner. Because if you want to book roles it’s more important to be a good auditioner. There’s a lot of exceptional actors who are not great auditioners and don’t book much. And there’s a lot of okay actors who are amazing auditioners who book a lot more. Just like anything else, auditioning is a learnable skill.
Whether you are in a comedic or dramatic scene, the goal is still to elicit a desired emotional response from the audience. In this class, everybody will get a chance to go up individually, perform assigned scenes, and get individual notes. Some of the topics covered in this class will be:
-How to get more auditions
-Audtion protocol–do’s and dont’s
Examples: don’t try to shake Casting Directors’ hands, plant your feet when on camera–don’t sway, minimal-to-no object work
-Identifying and playing the tone of the piece and your character’s want
-Making strong, personal choices with the material using yourself, your “voice” and your authenticity
-Anxiety: how to make auditions fun as opposed to feeling like impending doom
-Taking adjustments and running with them
-Always reacting to your scene partner
-The Power of Pretending
-Using techniques we’ve learned in improv to keep our scenes spontaneous and fresh
-And PACE, PACE, PACE!
PSW-Sun 11-2pm, PT, Feb 9th
Acting For Sketch – Jan/Feb 2020!
Instructor: Joe Wagner
Not available in the Jan/Feb 2020 session.
|Acting For Sketch||Sundays||11-2pm||Pack Theater||N/A|
An acting class for all experience levels–dedicated and tailored to the most common, established, and specific dynamics involved in the style of stage-performance required to bring any COMEDIC SKETCH “to life.” Various techniques and methods, often found in the basics of dramatic acting, will be demonstrated as the same building blocks for best SERVING the demands of a sketch–with whatever its particular type, tone, and premise ultimately guiding the “choices” made by its cast. From stage-picture and blocking to “entrances and exits” to vocal delivery, “classic” timing, and intensity of characterization–there will be an emphasis on each student embracing their natural comic strengths while also developing the tools to SUBVERT the expectation of how that particular sketch actor is PERCEIVED on stage. Whether you’re the lead… or a supporting player… this class will push performers to identify their purpose and execute it in the most effective manner to make the sketch the funniest it can be.
Act For Sketch-Sun 11-2pm, PT, Starts Jan 5th