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The Focus Theater

Sketch Comedy 101

Sketch Comedy 101

DURATION: Eight weeks
Mondays, 1/8 - 2/26
TIME: 6:00pm - 8:00pm
INSTRUCTOR: BJ Scanlon & Sarah Antao
COST: $175

If you've ever wanted to try your hand at writing a "Saturday Night Live" style show, this class is for you! Sketch comedy blends multiple skills into a final product; brainstorming, writing, editing, acting/performance, and production combine to create a sketch comedy show.

Students will learn how to write short comedic scenes — from traditional sketches, to blackouts, to runners, and more — while gaining an understanding of story structure, character development, and different sketch genres.

The class will include collaborative group work and solo sketch writing (writing and editing outside of class is required). The final session will feature a staged reading of students' work for an audience.

BJ Scanlon is an improviser, comedy writer, and performer with almost twenty years of experience who serves on the leadership team of the Focus Theater. He has performed with multiple improv troupes in the City of Rochester, including co-founding "The Broken Couch," which ran a community improv jam known as The Improv Plate. He was also a founding member and head writer of the late "Canary in a Coal Mine" (2012-2018), a dark, irreverent sketch comedy troupe heralded by CITY Newspaper as "The clear star of the turns clever and crass, but always funny." BJ has been recognized and awarded for his comedic talents as the winner of the Funniest Person in Rochester contest and has been nominated for CITY Newspaper's Best Improv Comedy Troupe. BJ has previously taught long form improv and teen improv for the Focus Theater, coached several local improv teams, and provided community and corporate workshops.

Sarah Antao is a sketch writer and improviser with over a decade of experience turning bits into sketch revues. A graduate of both the Second City Writing and iO Improv Conservatories in Chicago, Sarah is back in her hometown, mixing it up at The Focus Theater. She currently performs as the other half of two Focus-grown improv duos: Jammy Tammy with Eno Okung and Total BS with BJ Scanlon.

Regular price $175.00
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