Saturday, December 7, 2019

Winter Improv Classes for Adults and Teens Enrolling at Dreamcatcher

WHERE: Oakes Center, Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre, 120 Morris Avenue, Summit, NJ 07901

Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre, professional Theatre in Residence at the Oakes Center in Summit, will offer Improv Classes for adults and teens at the Beginner and Intermediate levels this winter. Dreamcatcher revised our class levels recently to reflect the growth and diversity of our students. Those who want to continue their improv education have the opportunity to study further in the program by returning to the correct level. This way students can more deeply explore skills and gain experience in techniques that are only introduced in one session.

Lulu French (Maplewood) will teach the six-week Beginner Improv Comedy for Teens and Adults class, running from January 18 through February 22 on Saturdays from 12:00–2:00 pm.

Instructor Laura Ekstrand (Livingston) will teach the six-week Intermediate Improv Comedy for Teens and Adults class. The class runs from January 19 through February 23 on Sundays from 7:30–9:30 pm. All classes will take place at the Oakes Center in Summit.

These classes delve deep into the craft of improv with more complex games as the weeks progress. The Beginner Improv Class is great for new improvisers, and also for actors who want to add another dimension to their skills. For those who come with a foundation of improv skills, Laura will introduce games that require keeping many balls in the air at once in the Intermediate class. Students unsure of which level is right for them are encouraged to contact the theatre for a recommendation. The environment is supportive and responsive to the needs of students with any level of experience. Improv is a valuable skill for countless situations such as public speaking, auditions and job interviews as well.

Lulu French first took improv classes at Gotham City Improv two decades ago and has been improvising ever since.  In addition to being a graduate of GCI, she has also studied improv under Amy Poehler, Matt Walsh, and Matt Besser, various Second City alumni such as Todd Stashwick (12 Monkeys), and improv masters Michael Gellman, Dave Razowsky, and Aretha Sills.  She has appeared in numerous improv performances in NYC improv theaters such as Gotham City Improv, the Magnet Theater, and Upright Citizens Brigade, as well as with Dreamcatcher’s own The Flip Side. Lulu has been teaching improv since 2000 and has recently opened her own business, Rocket Improv.

Laura Ekstrand was one of the founding members of Dreamcatcher's house team, The Flip Side (formerly Multiple Personality Disorder) in 2002. Laura is the Artistic Director and founder of Dreamcatcher Rep, where she has appeared in What Stays; Sister Play; Rapture, Blister Burn; Motherhood Out Loud; and Shakespeare in Vegas, among many others. She has also performed on various New Jersey and New York stages and in film and television. Laura is a playwright, director, and a private monologue and public speaking coach and holds a BA from Yale University and an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College. Laura is a member of AEA, SAG-AFTRA and the Dramatists Guild.

TUITION: The cost for the six-week Beginner or Intermediate class is $210. At Oakes, parking is available in the lot behind the theatre on Ashwood Avenue and at the Summit Recreation Center on Morris Avenue. The facility is wheelchair accessible.

To register for the class or for information on any of Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre's programs, please visit or contact Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre at The Oakes Center, 120 Morris Avenue, Summit, NJ 07901, 908-514-9654.

About Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre:

Dreamcatcher was founded in 1994, and is a non-profit professional ensemble of actors who build community with the audience by sharing contemporary, life-affirming stories that challenge, energize and entertain. Our work has at its heart a belief in the essential goodness of people and the power of live performance to connect people through our shared humanity.

We expose theatregoers to ideas and lives like and unlike their won, with the intention of awakening their imaginations and creating empathy for others. We deepen the experience of our patrons with personal contact through receptions, talkbacks and interactive programs.

The company’s activities include mainstage productions, improvisational comedy and cabarets, new play readings and a variety of educational and senior outreach programs.

Dreamcatcher’s programs are funded by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts/Department of State, a Partner Agency of the National Endowment for the Arts, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, The Union County Office of Cultural and Heritage Affairs, The Summit Area Public Foundation, and many other corporations, foundations and individuals.  Dreamcatcher Repertory Theatre is a senior member of the New Jersey Theatre Alliance.