Level 101: Introduction to Improvisation

Level 101: Intro to Improvisation

Students will explore the fundamental principles of improvisation through exercises in agreement, commitment, spontaneity, and listening. No prior performance or improv experience are necessary. Classes build upon one another, allowing novice improvisers to grow and be challenged at a comfortable rate.  Sessions are designed so students will build a strong foundation as a confident performer. You will amaze yourself with your newfound skills at the last class performance in front of your friends and family!

Michael Hartwell is Baltimore-based educator, improviser, and facilitator.  He is the Education Director for the Baltimore Improv Group, a Teaching Artist for Young Audiences of Maryland, aMichael (2)(1)nd an adjunct faculty member at Johns Hopkins University, teaching improv to science and engineering students.  He has taught improv to adults and children since 2013.  Prior to his current work, Michael was a Teach For America corps member and Baltimore City Schools middle school teacher for ten years.  He is a member of BIG’s main stage troupe Gus, along with special projects PUMPS and After School Grandma. Outside of improv and education, Michael is an avid reader, dog lover, music snob, certified Master Gardener, and uniformly disappointed Buffalo Bills fan.

  • Dates: 7 Tuesdays, May 9 – June 20 (7-9pm) + 1 Student Showcase, on Saturday June 24th (Time TBD)
  • Cost: $225
  • Location: Bolton Street Synagogue (212 West Cold Spring Lane)

Alanaj_head J. McCombs joined the Baltimore Improv Group in 2014. McCombs trained with BIG as well as in workshops in Maryland, New York, Washington, D.C. and in Philadelphia. McCombs performs with Minority Re’port, Local Spot and After School Grandma, which he also directs. As an instructor, he loves starting with honest, grounded play and then exploding it into ludicrous playful fun.  In real life, he is extremely gullible and tends to be ignorant of pop culture.

Maggie Phenicie joined BIG in 2015. Originally from Harrisburg, PA, she has studied improv with BIG since 2014. She performs with house troupe Hostel, special project After School Grandma, and indie troupe Fallopian Tudes. A veteran Baltimore City Schools middle school English teacher and former Teach for America corps member, she loves to infuse her class with elements of improv and the spirit of “yes and”. She loves teaching improv to adults and kids and serves as the coach of her school’s improv club. 

  • Dates: 7 Thursdays, May 11 – June 22 (7-9pm) + 1 Student Showcase, on Wednesday June 28th (Time TBD)
  • Cost: $225
  • Location: Bolton Street Synagogue (212 West Cold Spring Lane)