Posts Tagged ‘Del Close’

DSI, “A Comedy Temple”

“Located in Carrboro, this 100-seat, black-box theater is basically the city’s comedy temple – and people flock to it.” (Full Article)

I just came home from a relatively quiet holiday to a great FLOOD of supportive messages and notes about the article in the News & Observer. THANK YOU! Thank you for the very opposite of #inboxzero.

In fact, the picture above I stole from Laurie Ruettimann, who posted a candid frontpage “over the sofa” shot on Facebook. I used to be amazed at the accolades and support DSI would receive, but over time that has transitioned to healthy pride. I am extremely PROUD of my company, the funny people who have worked to help build what the N&O calls a comedy temple (with the church of improv, I’m happy with “temple”).

My company has taught more than 1000 students since we started teaching classes in 2003, a program that truly turned into a multi-faceted Comedy School. And hundreds of those very students continued with DSI to become active members of our performing company. They are the reason we are open today.

They are who I give thanks for Every Year.

Also, I’m HONORED to share the DSI stage with Del Close, our inspiration and guru of modern improv.

Anyway, I just wanted to post a short Thank You. Now I’ve got to run and get myself to the theater. Despite the incredible Turkey Hangover, The COMEDY Must Go On — We have shows at 730pm and 930pm!

But first, a personal thank you to CARRIE GORN, our ROCKSTAR publicist! YOU’RE AWESOME!

Harold for MFA Students

Tomorrow will be my last DSI Comedy Training Workshop at UNC (Carolina) for 2010 — I cannot say enough about the opportunity to share Improv as an Artform with MFA students in the Professional Actor Training Program. I am reminded daily why I do this work and how valuable the skills are as a foundation for any artistic expression. In 6 intense days 8 new students were exposed to Harold.

Thanks to Del Close for that opportunity. Thanks to Del for a lot.

Del talks about Harold in 1986.

Thankful for Del Close


I just arrived in New York City for my 6th consecutive summer pilgrimage to the UCB Theatre.

I landed at JFK, Air Train to Jamaica and E to 42nd Street to drop my bags. But Why? Why am I here? For the 12th Annual Del Close Marathon. YES! It has been described as Improv Christmas, an ALL YOU CAN EAT Longform Buffet performed by some of the most talented improvisers in the country (and Canada). And it happens Every Year because of Del Close and what he meant as a Director, Mentor and Friend to the Upright Citizens Brigade, and for thousands of improv disciples performing Harold around the world.

In fact, I consider myself to be one of those disciples.

It is my belief that Harold as a structure and philosophy of play is the basis for all comedic work, whether written for the stage, screen, or improvised. We have Del to thank for not only the recognition and respect improvisation has received as an Art but for a lot of what we consider to be comedy today. I never worked with Del myself, but I am extremely lucky to have worked with people who learned directly from him before he passed away. And I am proud to have Del watch over me, my students and my company at DSI.


“We are creating relationships between people, because in order to make improvisation work as theater or comedy, you have to deal with each other in a way that, if people behaved this way socially, the world would be a nicer community.” — DEL CLOSE, The Madness of Art

Now I’m off to enjoy the Marathon!