Creating Sketch from Improv – My Day with Kevin McDonald

I’m super late in posting this. Last summer I took a weekend trip to my friends, Dorian and Krissy Lenz, improv theater in Phoenix-National Comedy Theater. I visit about once a year. Last year, I had the privilege of visiting the weekend Kevin McDonald from the Kids in the Hall was leading a workshop.

We learned the tricks of the trade as many of the Kids in the Hall sketches started as improvisations, often bad improvisations. At the beginning of the workshop, we broke up into groups of four and quickly performed an improvisation.

I’ve learned that improvisers┬ácan be incredibly judgmental people. I am certainly on that list. Almost immediately upon entering the classroom, I began separating the good improvisers and the bad ones. I’m so horrible. Fortunately, humility got the best of me, and I let fate decide my team. My team consisted of myself, a main stage performer and two novices.

We banged out a good improv based on the suggestion of Hunchback. Once our basic improv was set in stone, we were given three opportunities to refine it as a sketch and perform it in front of Kevin and the other classmates.

One thing I learned is to stop telling people how I would do it. Sure, I’d make a suggestion but ultimately the individual performer has to be comfortable with his/her performance and I’m just meddling if I expect more.

That night, all of us performed the sketches, and our hunchback sketch was the last sketch of the night. Check out the video and if you’re ever in Phoenix and want to see some amazing comedy, check out National Comedy Theater in Mesa.

My First Book about Improv Comedy is available now on Amazon Kindle

 

Book Cover
 I did it. I finally published my first book – Yes, And: The Most Overlooked Concept in Improv. It’s available exclusively on Amazon and for the Kindle.

I’ve been a professional improvisor since 1994 and I currently perform with the National Comedy Theater in San Diego. When I first started, improv was just starting to become a popular art form.

I love improv comedy and I believe that anyone can do it. It’s my passion to share what I’ve learned about this art form and elevate the artform.

The concept of “Yes, And” is the foundational principle in improv. The problem is it is one of the most overlooked concepts in improv shows today.

My book takes an in depth look into “Yes, And.” I deconstruct the principle. Show you how we’ve misused it and neglected it. I also show you how to master the principle to improv your improv group and show.

“Yes, And” is the first in a series of books designed to help you produce a short-form improvisation show. Purchase your copy now at Amazon for the low price of $2.99.