Join me and meet Peter Margaritis, CPA, CGMA, business coach, and author of Improv is No Joke, who uses applied improvisation to inspire people to achieve higher levels of success in their business. Through the improvisation tenets of Yes, And, keep it simple, collaborate and experience, Peter teaches his clients to embrace C.H.A.N.G.E. (Creative | Humor | Aspire | Navigate | Gracious | Ethical) and realize their visions and goals. I was lucky to meet Peter through my good friend and improv coach Jay Sukow, and I know you will be glad to get to know him too.
When asked about why he uses applied improv in his work, Peter says
“Applied improv is all about the ability to draw upon your experience, knowledge, and education to apply them in a way that meets the needs of the person you are talking to or working with – and it can be taught.”
Join me and meet the multi-talented Patrick McCartney who is a talented actor, improviser, and teacher who has studied with and taught some of the most respected names in the entertainment industry. We learn about the great teachers who inspired Patrick’s teaching style and the effects of COVID-19 on the industry from his home in NYC.
Patrick’s improv journey began in Chicago in the late 1990s where he studied with the legendary Del Close and Mick Napier. He spent two years in Chicago’s Second City Touring Company Blue Co where he toured the country with Ali Farahnakian, Amy Poehler, and Tina Fey. Currently, Patrick teaches all advanced levels of improv, as well as Acting for Scripted Comedy at the People’s Improv Theater in NYC. Some of Patrick’s former students include Eric Stonestreet, Julie Klausner, and Ed Helms.
Join me and meet my friend Deana Criess, as we talk about the magic of musical improv and her work using improvisation games and techniques with her students at the Perkins School for the Blind. Deana is a professional improviser, master instructor, director, writer, and performer with a specialization in applied improvisation. Deana’s work has been featured on PBS, NPR, KBS (the Korean Broadcasting System), The Boston Globe, CNN, and Slate.com. Her original musical comedy, Lube had a sold-out premiere run in Boston.
Join me and meet Clay Drinko who is an educator, an improviser, and the author of Theatrical Improvisation, Consciousness, and Cognition. He earned his Ph.D. in drama and theatre studies from Tufts University and a Master of Science in education and a Master of Arts in performance studies. Clay started improvising over two decades ago and experienced firsthand the powerful effects of finding flow onstage. This started a lifelong journey to understand how improv affects the brain and how to harness this understanding to improve our everyday lives.
Join me and meet Izzy Gesell, an organizational alchemist who helps individuals and organizations transform their thinking from commonplace to extraordinary. He is skilled at delivering meaningful material in a way that makes participants enjoy their time with him.
Izzy is also the author of Playing Along: Group Learning Activities Borrowed From Improvisation Theater, a co-author of Humor Me: America’s Funniest Humorists on the Power of Laughter, and a contributor of a chapter on Improvisation as a facilitation tool in the IAF Group Facilitators Handbook. His latest project is a deck of cards with improv games on them. Learn more about Izzy at izzyg.org
Join me and meet Dr. Kristin Krueger who inspired me to use improvisational theatre techniques in my own practice. She is an internationally known Research Scientist at Rush University Medical Center and a Chicago based neuropsychologist who wrote the first evidence-based research paper on the effectiveness of Improv for Anxiety. The results of the study conducted by Krueger along with two Illinois Tech research collaborators were published in the paper “Thera-Prov: A Pilot Study of Improv Used to Treat Anxiety and Depression” in the Journal of Mental Health (July 2017).
Join me today to meet Jay Sukow, an actor, director, filmmaker and improviser, who has been performing scripted and improvised work professionally for over 20 years. Jay has trained with improv legends that include Stephen Colbert, Steve Carell, Jon Favreau, David Razowsky, Keith Johnstone, Dick Schaal, Del Close, and Mick Napier. Jay is a faculty member of The Second City and has performed regularly as part of their “Those Who Can’t” Faculty Jam.
Join me and meet Robert Cochrane, an award-winning filmmaker, with numerous narrative and documentary features to his credit. His touching relationship with his father who has Parkinson’s was the inspiration for Robert’s Parkinson’s-themed documentary series, Boys of Summer. He is a Ph.D. student at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV) studying the effect of improvisation on Parkinson’s Disease and Co-Owner of ComedySportz Las Vegas, which is part of an internationally-acclaimed improvisation league.
Join me today and meet Dan Bacalzo, Ph.D., Program Coordinator and Assistant Professor at Florida Gulf Coast University (FGCU) in Ft. Myers Florida. I had the pleasure of partnering with Dan last summer on a program he led for FGCU that incorporated improvisational theatre techniques to benefit at-risk girls in Immokalee Florida at the Pace Center for Girls.
What a treat to speak with Lisa Kays, LCSW who studied improvisational theater prior to becoming a master’s level social worker. She has been using improv as group therapy and to train therapists in this exciting art form. Lisa leads Improv This, Improv Thatprograms and groups that integrate principles and practices of various modalities to support individuals in trying out new behaviors.