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Intro to Improv - You are a Storyteller

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Location

Blackbaud

11501 Domain Dr.

Suite #200 (2nd floor)

Austin, TX 78758

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Description

I'll tell you a secret... you are a storyteller.

This is an on-your feet workshop focused on storytelling and stage presence. You will play games, do storytelling exercises and learn tools to help you connect to your audience. This class is for all skill levels.

Why Improv?

Forbes, the New York Times, Harvard Business Review and many other publications have written about how improv training is amazing business training, improves communication, increases creativity and reduces anxiety. But what’s the deal? How does improv help technology workers?

Improv helps people:

  • Listen and be present
  • Be better communicators
  • Tap into creativity
  • Relieve anxiety/stress and release tension
  • Celebrate making mistakes and be more resilient
  • Gracefully deal with uncertainty
  • Make your partners look good and collaborate on teams more effectively
  • YES AND in addition to being useful, improv is fun!

What Takeaways to Expect:

  • Develop deeper listening skills
  • Hone your audience awareness
  • Get in touch with your natural presence
  • Embrace body language that makes you open and flexible to ideas instead of closed off.
  • Be more comfortable going off-script (i.e. improvising) during presentations, in Q&A, and in life.
  • Take the focus off yourself and serve your audience by “being interested, instead of being interesting”
  • Use “yes and” thinking to collaborate more creatively and effectively with your team
  • Take care of your teammates and notice when team members feel excluded or afraid to contribute their thoughts. Sometimes, great ideas go unspoken.

Who Should Attend:

Anyone who wants to strengthen their storytelling, play games and have fun! All kinds of people from all walks of life participate in Joy of Improv workshops!

Location Details:

Address: 11501 Domain Drive, Austin, TX 78758
Suite #200 (2nd floor)

  • Enter at front left doors facing Domain Drive. Park in Red parking lot to the left of building
  • After entering, you can go up the stairs to the second floor and then be guided to the classroom

When to Arrive

Arrive 15-20 minutes before class begins to check-in and meet your classmates.

What to Bring

  • A full water bottle
  • A notebook and a pen or pencil to jot down notes or personal discoveries.

What to Wear

Workout attire (e.g. sweatpants/trackpants and t-shirts) is recommended but business casual also works. Make sure you are comfortable and can move freely.

Our Mission

  • Spread the joy of improv to underrepresented groups and to people who haven't had the opportunity to explore who they are and relate to others through play
  • Help people realize that they are storytellers
  • Help people get back in touch with their natural presence
  • Share knowledge, techniques and tools to sharpen storytelling skills, build confidence and build resilience

Learn more about The Joy of Improv

Testimonials

“I had a lovely time in Jared's classes! I felt so relaxed and happy afterwards. I feel like my neurons have been firing differently since. Improv play and improv thinking is helpful to me as a product manager.” - Adrienne Tran, Product Manager, Tesla

"I so enjoyed Jared's improv class. I work with people who have experienced chronic homelessness, and the games he taught have given me new, joyful, playful strategies for really *listening* to the men and women I have the privilege of serving." - Bethany Hebbard, Community Corps Director, Mobile Loaves and Fishes

“ Jared has a knack for establishing a safe environment of trust and empathy so participants can play, take creative risks, have fun failing and learn.” - Connor Warnock, Lead Engineer, Notable Labs

Read more reviews here.

About the Teacher:

Jared Polivka
Jared’s mission is to serve others through storytelling while living a light-hearted, present, empathetic and responsible life. Jared serves non-profits at Donorbox.org, teaches at The Joy of Improv and is an advisor for Artie.com.

I the Bay Area, Jared studied improv at BATS Improv Theatre and with Tim Orr; he studied acting at the American Conservatory Theatre and with Stan Roth. In Los Angeles, Jared studied acting with Richard Seyd and improv at The Groundlings and Impro Theatre.

With a hybrid background in technology startups, design thinking, acting and improvisation, Jared has taught and coached at many organizations including:
Google, Workday, Netflix, Angel List, StitchFix, Unity, Riot Games, Twitch, Uber, Lyft, Unity, Mode Analytics, eHarmony, Playstation, Twitter, Atlassian, Vevo, Hive Global Leaders Program, Founders Embassy, DataCouncil, Hakka Labs, MLConf, PyLadies, PyData, Strata Hadoop World, etc.

Class Donations:

We require $20 per student to help us cover our class costs.

How to Donate:

  • Cash
  • Venmo @jaredpolivka

*Notes on Donations:

  • If you are unable to afford the $20 for the class, please email Jared at jaredpolivka@gmail.com and tell him about your circumstances.
  • If you'd like to donate more than $20, we appreciate it! We've had some students who donate $80+ per class to help us cover costs so we can continue offering community classes. Donating more than $20 also helps cover students who aren't able to donate because of their circumstances. We're very grateful!
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Date and Time

Location

Blackbaud

11501 Domain Dr.

Suite #200 (2nd floor)

Austin, TX 78758

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