Located in the Arts District of Downtown Richmond, VA, the Coalition Theater is home to RVA’s best comedy shows and improv classes. Live Comedy. Dead Serious.

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Learn improv from some of the best instructors in Virginia

Registration for our Spring 2015 Session of improv classes is CLOSED.

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  • Dr. StrangeGame or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Game

    Alex Gross

    When: Saturday, May 30th, 1 – 4pm

    Instructor: Alex Gross

    Cost: $30

    Prerequisites: Some kind of Improv experience required, 
    Email us if you have any questions.

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    On our improv journey we constantly hear this word “game.” It’s hard and there are a lot of theories on what “game” is and how “game” should be played. All of them are correct but I’m going to teach you to be able to find “game” in the simplest way possible. The result is going to make you an improv warrior. No longer will you look at “game” as a daunting concept of improv but as your loyal companion ready to fight next to you in battle. You will take stages with “game” and slaughter the audience in cold blood while they shrill in laughter. It’s time for you to take the leash and play with “game” as a champion!

    About the Instructor
    An improvisor in the Philadelphia area, Alex studied at The Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in New York City, where he completed their improv curriculum, studying under instructors Bobby Moynihan (Saturday Night Live) and Shannon O’Neill, among others. Alex currently performs and teaches with Philly Improv Theater (PHIT) as a member of PHIT House Team Big Baby and an assortment of independent projects. His past projects include The Gross Show (nominated for a 2011 WitOut award) and PRO Mania (winner of a 2011 WitOut award, nominated 2012 WitOut award). In his free time Alex likes to live an anti-fascist, gay-positive, pro-feminist and animal-friendly life while raging against the machine.

  • Improv 101: Intro

    Donna
    When: Tuesdays, 7 – 9pm for 8 weeks beginning April 21
    Instructor: Donna Steele

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: None. No comedy or performance experience necessary. Email us if you have any questions.

    Get More Info

    Have you always wanted to try improv? Are you looking to use the fundamental lessons in other aspects of your life? In this first level of our training program, you will learn the fundamentals of improv from saying “Yes, and” to listening and being more spontaneous.

    Intro to Improv is an eight-week course that is taught in a very supportive, fun environment that allows you to feel comfortable taking risks. All experience levels are welcome.

    About the Instructor
    Donna started as an intern with the Coalition back when they still performed at Gallery5. She is now happily performing with house team Da Vinci and the main stage cast on Friday nights. Her real love is improvised Slam Poetry, which she lays down in her two-person team, Slean Dion.
    When she isn’t on stage, you can find her all around Richmond checking out local music and good food.

    Improv 101: Intro

    Townsend

    When: Wednesdays, 7pm – 9pm for 8 weeks beginning April 22.

    Instructor: Townsend Hart

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: None. No comedy or performance experience necessary. Email us if you have any questions.

    Get More Info

    Have you always wanted to try improv? Are you looking to use the fundamental lessons in other aspects of your life? In this first level of our training program, you will learn the fundamentals of improv from saying “Yes, and” to listening and being more spontaneous.

    Intro to Improv is an eight-week course that is taught in a very supportive, fun environment that allows you to feel comfortable taking risks. All experience levels are welcome.

    About the Instructor
    Townsend has been performing improv and sketch comedy for the past seven years, and began performing with The Coalition in 2010. She is a member of The Johnson’s, performs with main stage on Friday nights, and has a passion for Kareoke in her sketch group, Carol & Carol.

    Improv 201: Character and Emotion

    “David
    When: Sundays, 7 – 9pm for 8 weeks beginning April 19.Instructor: David Pijor

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: Intro to Improv
    Email us if you have any questions.

    Get More Info

    Good scenes are the bedrock of improv. In our second level, you will strengthen the skills you built in our Intro class and focus on creating sustainable scenes based on strong, deep relationships and honest emotional reactions.

    Great if you want to dig deeper into improv or if you need to interact with other humans in your day-to-day life.

    About the Instructor
    David Pijor started improvising in Richmond in 2005 with ComedySportz. Since then, he’s learned improv from some of the best instructors in the country and has been featured in festivals across North America and on Funny or Die. Pijor is a founding member of the Coalition and currently performs with Pigeon, Middle Management, Horse Apples, coaches Da Vinci, and is also the Coalition Theater’s Creative Director.

    Improv 201: Character and Emotion

    “Nick

    When: Tuesdays, 7pm – 9pm for 8 weeks beginning April 21.

    Instructor: Nick Leveski

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: Intro to Improv
    Email us if you have any questions.

    Get More Info

    Good scenes are the bedrock of improv. In our second level, you will strengthen the skills you built in our Intro class and focus on creating sustainable scenes based on strong, deep relationships and honest emotional reactions.

    Great if you want to dig deeper into improv or if you need to interact with other humans in your day-to-day life.

    About the Instructor
    Nick Leveski has been doing improvisation since enrolling in Level A of the Second City Training Center’s Beginning Improv program in 2005. He’s a graduate of the training center’s Writing Program and Conservatory Improv Program and was a member of the training center’s house team, Twisty! Nick is also a graduate of the iO training center and an alumni of the iO Harold team, Attica. Nick moved from Chicago to Richmond in September of 2013 and can be seen at the Coalition Theater performing with the house team, Dollar Machine, the two-person show PACK and the rowdy fellas of Horse Apples. Nick also likes to improvise.

    Improv 301: Patterns and Games

    “Scott

    When: Mondays, 7pm – 9pm for 8 weeks beginning April 20.

    Instructor: Scott Beckett

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: 101, 201
    Email us if you have any questions.

    Get More Info

    In our third level, we explore creating patterns and discovering games to propel your scenes forward. You’ll get out of your head and into the show by focusing on your team and what they need.

    You’ve contracted the improv bug, you may as well accept that you are now beyond the help of medical science.

    About the Instructor
    Scott Beckett has been performing improv for four years, including two years with the Coalition Theater’s house team The Johnsons. He has performed in DC, Baltimore, and Charleston. He comes to improv after four years of driving construction equipment for the United States Marine Corps and ten years in health care business analysis. Scott has starred in two Richmond 48 Hour Film Festival runners up for Best Film.

    Improv 301: Patterns and Games

    Patrick Gantz

    When: Wednesdays, 7pm – 9pm for 8 weeks beginning April 22.

    Instructor: Patrick Gantz

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: 101, 201
    Email us if you have any questions.

    Get More Info

    In our third level, we explore creating patterns and discovering games to propel your scenes forward. You’ll get out of your head and into the show by focusing on your team and what they need.

    You’ve contracted the improv bug, you may as well accept that you are now beyond the help of medical science.

    About the Instructor
    Patrick Gantz was first introduced to improv in the seventh grade and, since then, his addiction has spawned The Whethermen of UVA, taken him to Chicago where he performed among iO’s house teams, and scooped him off to Edinburgh where the Guardian called him, “Somewhat overwrought.” Currently, he is the Education Director at the Coalition Theater, coaches The Johnsons and you can see him perform regularly with PACK and Horse Apples.

    Improv 401: Longform Improv

    Aaron Grant

    When: Sundays, 1 – 3pm for 8 weeks, beginning April 19.

    Instructor: Aaron Grant

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: Improv 101, 201 and 301
    Email us if you have any questions.

    Get More Info

    In our fourth level, we’ll approach Long Form from the 16-bar blues of improv: The Harold.

    Over eight weeks, this survey will strengthen the broad skills you have (two-person scenes, group work, playing from emotion, pattern recognition), and put it all on its feet in a longer, cohesive piece.

    About the Instructor
    Desk jockey by day, improviser by night, Aaron Grant is one of the founding members of the Coalition. He got his start with ComedySportz in 2006, but now you can see him performing regularly with the teams of Pigeon, MEGAPOWER, Redickheads, in main stage shows on Friday nights, and with the Coalition Tour Company.

  • Stand-Up 101 (SOLD-OUT)

    Jim Zarling

    When: Sundays, 1 – 3pm for 8 weeks, beginning April 19

    Instructor: Jim Zarling

    Cost: $185

    Prerequisites: This class is intended for people who have little to no experience doing stand-up comedy, who have always wanted to try stand-up but don’t know how, when, or where to start. (Hint: It starts here). Email us if you have any questions.

    Over the course of this class, students will work toward writing and performing an original 5-minute stand-up set. Students will begin learning basic concepts of joke writing (premise/set up/punchline). You will look to find premises in your everyday life, then work on honing your material and making it authentic and accessible to audiences. Later in the session, students will focus on creating, critiquing and workshopping their own material. The class will culminate in a class showcase performance of all-original student sets.

    About the Instructor

    Jim Zarling has been performing as a stand up comic since 2006. In 2008 he founded the Comedy Roundtable in Charlottesville which helped countless stand up comics get their start on stage. He has headlined several tours throughout the Southeast and has featured at The Cape Fear Comedy Festival, The North Carolina Comedy Arts Festival and The F Bomb Comedy Festival. In the past year has opened for Myq Kaplan, Jared Logan and Tig Notaro.

    At the Coalition Theater he performs with Pigeon and MEGAPOWER and coaches new house team Clapsaddle.

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Have questions about upcoming shows, classes and anything else that the Coalition can help you with? Shoot us a message.

  • , 8 W. Broad St, Richmond, VA
  • @ info@rvacomedy.com (preferred)
  • N (804) 332-5857*

* NOTE: We don’t normally keep daytime office hours, so email or the contact form to the left is the best way to get in touch with us and get a response.