taking risks

Prepare to Fail

If there is one thing that is certain in improv, it’s that you are going to fail. Hopefully, you will continue to fail throughout your career, because in improv, if you don’t give up, that failure eventually turns into success. No matter how hard you try to avoid it, you cannot have one with other. Unfortunately, […]

Lost in an improv scene

6 Steps to forming a great improv group

Today more than ever, improvisers are striking out on their own and forming independent groups. Nothing makes me happier than this because this is the way people really grow in improv. However, just because you can form your own team doesn’t mean it’s going to be a success. Creating a group that really works requires […]

TJ Jagodowski at Second City

Why is Chicago the Mecca of Improv?

Have you ever thought about why Chicago is the mecca of improv? Well, I recently had the chance to explore this question in depth when WBEZ, the public radio station in Chicago, contacted me about doing a story about it for their Curious City show. If you ask me, Chicago really has all the right […]

Will Hines

Is It OK to Say ‘No’ In an Improv Scene?

Is ok to say ‘no’ in an improv scene? The answer is yes. Improvisers have struggled with this one for years. They feel if they don’t say “yes and…” to everything, they are betraying their scene partner. But if they always avoid saying “no,” they’re usually just betraying themselves. I cannot tell you how many […]

Improv group

12 Tips for Doing a Great Long-Form Improv Show

I was looking over some my old blogs recently and came across one I had written in 2013 about tips for doing a great long-form improv show. As I re-read it, I had two reactions. One was, “Hey! I’m a pretty good writer! This is some good information.” And the second one was, “Hmm, I […]

Betsy Carrane

A Letter to My Daughter

Dear Betsy, This is your Daddy. I know you are too young to read this, but I wanted to write this because your Daddy needs a blog this week and I love writing about you. I pretty much love you, except for last Sunday when you were really whiney. It was one of those days […]


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