MARCH 3-13, 2016#TOsketchfest16647.505.1050

Performers

Professional Development Series

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The 2016 Professional Development Series features exceptional learning opportunities for TOsketchfest performers, audiences and the greater comedy community. All of the workshops, panels and parties are FREE TO ATTEND, thanks to the generosity of our donors who believe, like we do, that it’s important to support the funny people of Toronto’s comedy community!

See below for a schedule of events.

More events will be added soon, so check in regularly and watch your email inbox for Professional Development event announcements from Aaron.

Refundable Registration Deposit

Many sessions are hands-on workshops with limited enrollment capacity. For these workshops, TOsketchfest collects a refundable registration deposit of $20, payable by credit card or PayPal. When you attend the session, your registration deposit will be automatically refunded to you. If you do not attend the session, TOsketchfest will keep your deposit and use it to support learning and professional development activities at the fest. If you must cancel your registration, please do so by 24 hours prior to your workshop by emailing Ashley Comeau, Performer Services Coordinator at amcomeau@gmail.com. If you give us at least 24 hours notice, we will refund your registration deposit and open your space in the workshop to someone on the waiting list.


matt and jacquie

KILLING THE STRAIGHT MAN

With Jacquie Baker and Matt Schmid of The Flat Earth and The Incredible Shrinking Matt & Jacquie (Philadelphia)

Saturday March 5th – 1:00 – 3:00 pm – The SiriusXM Stage at The Theatre Centre
A workshop designed to help writers eliminate or flesh out “straight men” characters in sketches. Straight men tend to be two-dimensional characters that serve to “point out the crazy” to the audience instead of letting the crazy speak for itself. Through this workshop, writers will discover that when all of their characters buy into their reality, interactions between characters become much more interesting and realistic. Participants should bring something to write with.

Jacquie Baker is a sketch comedy writer and performer from Philadelphia. She writes and performs with PHIT house team The Flat Earth (SF Sketchfest, Chicago Sketchfest, Toronto Sketch Fest) and the sketch comedy duo The Incredible Shrinking Matt & Jacquie (2013 & 2014 Dirtiest Sketch in Philadelphia winners, Philly Sketchfest). She is a former member of ManiPedi (NYC Sketch Fest, Best Sketch Group – 2014 & 2015 WitOut Awards) and Alley of Nightmares (UCB’s Spank, Philly Fringe Festival, Toronto Sketch Fest). Jacquie co-starred as Rudy in the webseries Helmets of Righteousness and appeared in the webseries Welcome To Anhedonia. She is the sketch director for Barbara Bush, produces shows bi-annually for Five Dollar Comedy Week, and co-produces Hey, We’re Cool, a monthly variety show.

Matthew Schmid is a sketch writer and performer for the Philly Improv Theater house team the Flat Earth (San Francisco, Chicago, Toronto sketch comedy festivals) and one half of the duo The Incredible Shrinking Matt & Jacquie (Toronto, New York sketch comedy festivals, 3 time Dirtiest Sketch In Philadelphia winner). Matthew has appeared on and won the Philadelphia edition of Nerdist’s Competitive Erotic Fan Fiction Podcast and his writing can be seen on McSweeney’s Internet Tendency. Matthew also teaches sketch comedy writing at The Philly Improv Theater.

Pre-Requisites: Participants must have sketch experience, either through a training program or at least one year of experience writing/performing with a troupe.

To register: Complete the KILLING THE STRAIGHT MAN Workshop Registration Form. $20 registration deposit is required.

 

road trip

Comedy Road Trip #1
Hosted by Carson Pinch

Saturday March 5th – 3:00 – 4:30 – The Theatre Centre Upper Lobby
Join us for a comedy road trip as we visit a handful of comedy cities from across North America. Join reps from our out-of-town troupes and hear about what’s going on in their comedy hometowns; what are the venues, festivals, resources and opportunities? What’s really inspiring and what are the challenges? We’ll get to know these comedy cities through a panel and Q&A, then open the floor for networking and socializing.

To Register: No registration required. Everyone is welcome. This session is open to TOsketchfest participants and the greater comedy community.

 

sctc

WRITING A “TOWN HALL” SKETCH:
THE SECOND CITY WAY

Instructor TBA

Tuesday March 8th – 5:30 – 8:30 pm – The Second City Training Centre (99 Blue Jays Way)

This three hour workshop will introduce and explore the sketch archetype known as the “Town Hall”. Participants will see classic examples of Town Hall sketches from the Second City archives and then they will create the format in real time. They will explore platform, POV, heightening and the interdependence this format has with the audience.

This fun interactive workshop will leave the participants with a clear understanding of what it takes to write a dynamic Town Hall sketch.

Pre-Requisites: Willingness to work collaboratively with others and improvise a little. Bring a paper and pen!

To register: Complete the TOWN HALL SKETCH Registration Form. $20 registration deposit is required.

 

 

Hip. Bang!

DISRUPT AND DELIGHT
Audience Manipulation in Sketch Comedy

With Tom Hill and Devin Mackenzie of Hip. Bang! and Blind Tiger Comedy (Vancouver)

Friday March 11th – 1:00 – 3:00 pm – The SiriusXM Stage at The Theatre Centre
When performers twist an audience’s mood or expectations, opportunities for sweet comedic release abound. In this workshop, we will dive into the non-traditional approaches sketch comedians can take to their audiences, and the ways disrupting, infiltrating, and impersonating them can create big wins on stage.

Hip.Bang! is a comedy duo from Vancouver whose playful, absurd comedy has delighted and disrupted audiences worldwide.

Tom and Devin of Hip.Bang! have been featured at many a comedy festival, including JFL NorthWest, San Francisco SketchFest, NXNE, Rapid Fire Theatre’s Improvaganza, New York’s Del Close Marathon, Out Of Bounds Comedy Festival, and more. In 2015, they debuted their web series, PITCH MEN, at NorthWest Comedy Fest. Their new web series, ODDLAND, is in production.

Tom and Devin are also co-founders of Blind Tiger Comedy, Vancouver’s home for alternative comedy, where they teach sketch comedy and long form improv.

Pre-Requisites: Participants must have sketch experience, either through a training program or at least one year of experience writing/performing with a troupe. Participants will be asked to submit a script they are working on in advance of the workshop (or, if not available, that they have seen and can describe) that involves performers interacting directly with audience members.

To register: Complete the DISRUPT AND DELIGHT Workshop Registration Form. $20 registration deposit is required.

 

road trip

Comedy Road Trip #2
Hosted by Ashley Comeau

Saturday March 12th – 3:00 – 4:30 – The Theatre Centre Upper Lobby
Join us for a comedy road trip as we visit a handful of comedy cities from across North America. Join reps from our out-of-town troupes and hear about what’s going on in their comedy hometowns; what are the venues, festivals, resources and opportunities? What’s really inspiring and what are the challenges? We’ll get to know these comedy cities through a panel and Q&A, then open the floor for networking and socializing.

To Register: No registration required. Everyone is welcome. This session is open to TOsketchfest participants and the greater comedy community.