HUGE Theater is a non-profit improv comedy theater in Uptown Minneapolis. Our director of education, Jill Bernard, has been teaching improvisation – the art of creating comedy without a script – since 1997, making available the tools that improvisors use to work together seamlessly and creatively.
Cost & Location
The price is $50 per participant for a 1 hour workshop, minimum $800. 1 hour or 2 hour workshops are the recommended lengths. We can come on location to you or host you at HUGE Theater for an exciting change of environment for your team. Caveat: this workshop cannot be a surprise. A higher percentage of people have a fear of public speaking than of death, it is not kind or wise to spring improv on unwitting participants.
To set a date, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
We are pleased to offer the following workshops, and can also custom-design a workshop to meet your needs:
FIREBALL THEORY of SPONTANEITY
This workshop presents Jill Bernard’s Fireball Theory. Whenever we find ourselves at the beginning of an endeavor, we’re filled with self-doubt and judgement. This workshop is a series of exercises to help you think faster and harder than you can judge yourself. We’ll replace the voice in your head that says, “It’ll never work” with a voice that says, “YEE-HAW!” Using theater games and scenarios, you will learn to metaphorically jump into the conversation and outrun the explosion of self-loathing and doubt, just like an action movie hero outruns a fireball thus defying the laws of physics.
“IF IT MAKES YOU HAPPY” – CREATIVITY THROUGH PLAY
Too often a work day is a tedious chore, filled with rough decisions and good and bad choices. In this session with Jill Bernard, participants will learn the joy and success that follows doing exactly what tickles them. When you were in school, the most mentally productive part of your day was probably recess. Let’s bring a little bit of that recess feeling into the office. A disgruntled employee will waste 15 minutes of every hour. If having fun for five minutes a day keeps your employees happy, 400 minutes are saved in a week, and retention improves in the long-term. Loosening up and having fun creates a spirit of intimacy without all the personal details, and employees work better together when they know each other. This workshop will use theater games and scenarios to teach you and your team to play together so you can work together and generate ideas more effectively.
In a customized session we can tackle specific communication or teamwork issues within an organization. We are happy to consult with you and use our 20 years of experience to design an effective program.
Workshops also include exercises on “Yes And” and “Group Mind” – two ideas central to improvisation that make great leaders and team players.
YES AND – The secret to improv is you’re always right, and your partners are always right. Say yes to an idea, and add to it. Reserve your judgment for later; make this choice the right choice now. For a leader, this aids in supporting your team, and making their voices heard. The philosophy also aids in brainstorming and growing in your own ideas.
GROUP MIND – None of us are as smart as all of us. When a basketball team is on the court, they’re making moves as a group that none of them individually could’ve made. All good teams work the same way. Married couples, too – it’s how they end up finishing each other’s sentences.
About the Course Designer
Jill Bernard is a founding member of HUGE Theater, and has been performing with ComedySportz-Twin Cities since 1993. Her one-woman improv piece, Drum Machine, has been featured at the Chicago Improv Festival, the Toronto Improv Jamboree, the Miami Improv Festival, Philadelphia Improv Festival, and the ComedySportz National Tournament, among others. She has taught and performed improv in Norway, Canada, and over thirty of these United States, in cities that include Juneau, AK; Spokane and Seattle, WA; Washington DC; Bowling Green, KY; Phoenix, AZ; and also on an episode of MTV “Made.” She is one-half of the duo SCRAM with Joe Bill of the Annoyance Theater. An Artistic Associate of the Chicago Improv Festival, she has studied at the Annoyance Theater, Improv Olympic, the Brave New Workshop and other organizations; and is the recipient of the 2005 Chicago Improv Festival Avery Schreiber Ambassador of Improv Award, and the 2007 Miami Improv Festival award for Best Solo Show. She was also the winner, in January 2000, of the Executive Vice President Award for outstanding contribution to Human Resources, the highest award in the American Express Human Resources function.