Author Archives: jschaefer

Congrats to Emily Leonard!

Emily Leonard has been recognized by the Illinois Theatre Association with an award for excellence in creative dramatics! Emily has worked with CIP for years producing the Teen Comedy Fest. She has also coached the All-State Improv Team at the Illinois High School Theater Festival for multiple years in a row. She is an incredibly gifted teacher and performer and all all around awesome human being! We are happy to celebrate with her today!

NACA Northern Plaines

The Chicago Improv Festival is in high gear right now with international acts bringing the laughs at a slew of Chicagoland venues.  We at Chicago Improv Productions, however, love being in two places at once!  While the festivities are in full swing back home, we’re also in Saint Paul sharing our passion for ‘The Collage’ to colleges and universities at the NACA Northern Plains Regional Conference.

We’ve had some great conversations with students about the sheer joy of interactive performance and spontaneous humor!  We look forward to bringing ‘The Collage’ in all its hysterical glory to campuses in the coming school year!

CIT Nationals!

Anticipation is mounting for tomorrow’s College Improv Tournament Nationals!

Come to the Vittum Theater (1012 N. Noble St. Chicago, IL) on Saturday March 1st and check out some truly hilarious college improv teams in action!  Here’s the schedule for the days events:

12pm: Playoff #1

1) Droppin’ $cience – Columbia College Chicago
2) Cell Block Tango – University of North Texas
3) Improv Athens – University of Georgia
4) Quipfire! Improv Comedy – Princeton University

2pm: Playoff #2

1) Meg Has Low Self-Esteem – Kansas State University
2) The Buttered Niblets – Johns Hopkins University
3) Paperback Rhino – University of Iowa
4) Tall, Grande, Venti – California Institute of the Arts

4pm: Playoff #3

1) The Sarratt Pack – Vanderbilt University
2) Cheap Sox – Tufts University
3) Dead Parrots Society – Western Washington University
4) Sissy Magic – Northwestern University

6pm: Playoff #4

1) The Mobb Line – Savanah College of Art & Design
2) Barren Mind Improv – Arizona State University
3) The Best Best Friends – University of Missouri
4) Improv Mafia – Illinois State University

9pm: National Championship Match

1) Winner of 12pm Playoff
2) Winner of 2pm Playoff
3) Winner of 4pm Playoff
4) Winner of 6pm Playoff

Get more information about tickets and streaming video at the CIT website!

Improv 101!

The future of improv is looking strong!

Chicago Improv Productions is excited to promote improv at the Illinois High School Theater Festival this weekend.  Young thespians have been stopping by our both all day to share their enthusiasm for improvisation and their curiosity about its possibilities!  Even those students who don’t consider themselves improvisors get excited talking about it.

For students eager to explore spontaneous performance, CIP’s own Richard Haschemeyer presented an IMPROV 101 workshop!  Students fearlessly dove into the work!  They collaborated instantly to build sophisticated stage pictures, engaging stories and wonderfully diverse characters!

After the festival we hope to bring workshops like this one directly to schools throughout the state!

Touring Company

CIPTC_Logo (final)

CIP is busy rehearsing our Touring Company! The chemistry among these improvisors as they explore ‘The Collage’, CIP’s signature format, is incredible! The ensemble has been exploring a mind boggling array of suggestions through monologues, stories, scenes, over the top characters, short form games, and whatever orchestrated chaos their group mind can create!  All the world’s a stage, and we put the whole world of improv on our stage!

Our enthusiasm for performing this form is only matched by the audience’s joy in seeing it!

CIP Presents Chicago Improv Touring Company!

Chicago improv Touring Company








Chicago Improv Productions is ready to hit the road with Chicago Improv Touring Company!  A rotating ensemble of six improvisors will deliver CIPTC’s signature form, “The Collage”, to theaters, colleges, and assorted venues throughout the midwest.  This unique performance is a hybrid of long form techniques and short form games.  The result is a highly entertaining syntheses that audiences love!

CIP Welcomes Jeremy Schaefer!

Chicago Improv Productions is happy to introduce our new education director, Jeremy Schaefer.

Jeremy Schaefer Head Shot_face0

Jeremy is no stranger to CIP.  As an improvisor, teaching artist, and emcee, he has been part of the team since 2006.  This August he stepped into the role of Education Director, and couldn’t be happier about it

Jeremy’s belief that improvisation is a tremendously powerful tool for educators is integral to his approach to the craft.  He leads improv classes for all ages at The Metropolis Performing Arts Centre, tours interactive storytelling assemblies through Urban Gateways, facilitates workshops, trainings, and social issues performances for Imagination Theater, and has performed in each of Chicago Improv Productions’ numerous outreach programs.

He is passionate about sharing improvisation as both an art form and life philosophy with eager students throughout the state.

If you have questions about how to bring Chicago Improv Productions to your students, give him a call (773) 599-3084, or drop him a line at