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American Stage Improv Presents RETURN OF THE LAUGHS


“Return of the Laughs” is a full day of events at American Stage celebrating everything that makes us giddy with excitement, chortle with glee, and guffaw with joy.

American Stage Improv is ready to LOL together again at the theatre! Imagine it: a group of humans laughing at a group of humans, who are laughing!

"Return of the Laughs" is a full day of events at American Stage celebrating everything that makes us giddy with excitement, chortle with glee, and guffaw with joy.

Choose your own adventure from improv shows to a variety of workshops. Join us for the first of many more laughs! We'll make sure the theatre is squeaky clean... Now as for the comedy, we'll leave that up to you.

BEST VALUE - ALL LAUGHS PASS: $90 for as many workshops as you'd like, plus admission to all of the improv performances.

Pre-Show Event - Friday, August 20, 2021

American Stage Improv Reunion Jam
8:30 PM - 9:30 PM (bar opens 8 PM)
$5 Suggested Donation
All proceeds from the AS Improv Reunion Jam go to Directions for Living, supporting trauma-informed care for the most vulnerable populations in Tampa Bay.

Get back in the jam! ASI students, performers, alumni, and instructors are invited to laugh, celebrate, and kick off a return to live, in-person improv comedy. A fun and supportive environment to jump up to play, perform, and create together!

While this event is intended for ASI students, grads, instructors and performers, all are welcome to come and enjoy the show. Seating is first-come, first-served.

Main Events - Saturday, August 21, 2021

Virtual Workshop - Comedy & Creative Writing
10:00 AM - 12:00 PM
$25.00 for admission
How to think, write, speak, create, and be funnier. Explore creative processes, tips & tricks that open new pathways to comedic communication, whatever your medium.

Participants will:

  • Explore basic comedic elements, like "yes and", pattern, and game
  • Understand different types of comedic styles and structures, such as "reversal of expectation", "escalation", "spoof", and more
  • Breakdown ways to heighten and explore concepts and topics

This workshop is perfect for anyone wishing to develop a comedic voice that is relevant, witty, joyful, and truly their own; for sketch-comedians, playwrights, screenwriters, stand-ups, fine artists, podcasters, journalists, corporate presenters, or anyone who wants to heighten the humor their communication. All experience levels and creative (or non-creative backgrounds) welcome.

Onsite Workshop - Laughter Yoga
10:30 AM - 11:30 AM
$25 for admission
For anyone who loves to laugh and perhaps even more so for those who find themselves not laughing often. This laughter yoga class will incorporate core improv principles interwoven with restorative movement and laughter yoga techniques. Explore the joy of laughing and the endless wellness possibilities when we are all focused, fearless and flexible.
Participants will:

  • Be inspired by improv principles like listening, offering/acceptance, and "Yes, And" through this laughter yoga practice.
  • Explore the wellness benefits of laughter in our lives, even when it's not inspired by comedy.
  • Discover laughter and wellness tools to bring into their daily lives if they choose to.

This workshop is perfect for folks who have ,or haven't, taken yoga, who love to laugh, and probably especially for those who don't find themselves laughing. This class will support people on all levels and phases of their wellness journey.

Onsite Workshop - Improv for Everyone
12:00 PM - 2:00 PM
$35 for admission

For anyone interested in laughing, playing, connecting, and refreshing their spirit. It's not just making things up on the spot, but the joy of connecting with others and creating something new! Explore the joy of improv and reconnect with new players with this "all play" workshop.

Participants will:

  • Review improv basics like listening, offering/acceptance, and "Yes, And."
  • Explore short-form improv games that explore comedic characters, heightening and
  • Breakdown tools of improv scene work like tag outs, edits and walk-ons.

This workshop is perfect for those looking to try improv for the first time, and for improvisers who've taken classes before and are looking for time to play, connect and refresh their skills.

Onsite Workshop - Culturally Responsive Improv
2:30 PM - 5:00 PM
$35 for admission
For improv artists and performers seeking to foster belonging on and off stage, and make space for diverse voices.

Performance - Return of the Laughs
7:00 PM - 9:00 PM
$25 Admission

Act 1: Witty shenanigans & musical comedy stylings ASI short-form team, Swipe Right (Patrick A. Jackson, Cat Lim, Joshua Roriguez, Brian Schuett, Kari Velguth, & Donovan Whitney). Then gawk at the drama, tension, and realness of your favorite reality docs and trashy tv shows with Tiger Love Survivor Island (Ricky Wayne, Kathleen Taylor, Colleen Cherry, Patrick A. Jackson, Jenna Felder, & Travis Tyler).

Act 2: Odd characters and wild worlds with some of your favorite long-form ASI improvisers (Gavin Hawk, Cat Lim, , Kathleen Taylor, Phil Hill, Paulo Karukin, & Gavin Stark), then a fully improvised musical inspired by the audience with ASI musical improv team, Definitely Not Murderers (Colleen Cherry, Patrick A. Jackson, Marissa Nicole Koch, Christian Torres, Tiffany Ford, & John Perez)

American Stage's year-round accessible programming brings the power of quality live theatre to each generation. American Stage believes that through the telling of dynamic stories, the theatre has the power to unite us in our shared experiences and to deepen our connection to one another through the illumination of diverse perspectives.

American Stage's new season for 2021-2022 was recently announced and will begin in October 2021. Additional information about subscriptions and the upcoming season can be found at AmericanStage.Org.

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