Improv Class Builds Children’s Self-Confidence, Self Concept

Improv has foundational guiding principles, each of which can be linked to psychological skills or constructs that may increase self-concept. Below, we list each of these foundational guiding principles, and how each one may be linked to self-concept or other social-emotional skills.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/the-mind-stage/201905/improv-and-self-concept

I can attest that Improv most certainly does increase self confidence. Here is an email I just got THIS MORNING from a student new to our classes.

“(my son) is having a blast in your class.  Every time, he has huge smiles for the rest of the day, and he’s had tremendous growth in his speaking confidence already. “

This mom is signing up for another four weeks.

What is most significant about this student, he has ONLY taken virtual classes the past four weeks.

For 18 years I have seen shy kids wake up after just one live session. We moved online with the rest of the world in March.

I am beyond excited to see the growth in this child. He has such anxiety, he sounded asthmatic when he has to talk, well when he finally talked around the third class. When he finally opened up it was a struggle.

But yesterday, he laughed nearly the entire hour, and contributed more than ever. Only once did he start to heave before speaking.

Reading his mom’s email brought smiles and happy tears.

The smartest among us are usually the shyest. Their brains worked differently. They have so much information they don’t always know how to share it. Many of these kids are on the. Spectrum. They are high functioning but society generally writes them off.as different so they shut down socially.

They seem quiet but are just as anxious. Improv calms the anxiety through creative cerebral play.

I had been doing residencies at schools and workshops for years by the time I opened up my school in 2011.

One of my very first students enrolled in public classes was first a five year old kid with Asperger’s Syndrome. I only knew this because his parents, after coming to our show numerous times, reached out on Facebook. Mom explained to me his situation and how just being in our interactive shows brought the kid out if his shell.

Their requests led to my first public class. He was now eight. Five years later he was cast in a Netflix TV show. Now I hear he wants to enlist as a Marine.

Another student from that first class is now working with our company as a professional performers and teacher. Steven Prestia also sits on the board of a Long Island arts council while still in College.

These kids, and their parents, have become family.

In those years I have had hundreds, maybe 1000+ pass through our doors. We get a few theatrical types, after all we are in Times Square and Improv is amazing for ALL performers. But the ones I treasure, come in scared.

They leave with smiles and laughter.

I leave feeling accomplished. I never set out to change a life. I am humbled by every parental email, text or call saying how much our classes have done for their child.

But more importantly, GET YOUR KID INTO IMPROV CLASSES.

I hope you will choose mine, but there are hundreds others.

Just make sure it’s a class that does not cater to it’s stars.

The secret is PSYCHOLOGICAL SAFETY for all. No one should feel less than in an Improv class. I nurture my stars but never at the expense of those that NEED our classes the most.

Links to classes can be found in the links above (MENU).

IMPROV on ZOOM Now Available via Amazon Kindle

Now available on #kindleunlimited for free. Just $2.99 on Kindle and $7.99 via paperback.

This book is 18 years in the making with dozens of amazing artists contributing.

It’s sale will subsidize the work of professional artists in these lean times.

It is a tool for our cast, our students and #improvcomedy players around the world.

Get online and create much needed laughs for each other.

Bring laughter into your classroom while teaching creative writing, critical thinking, team communication, presentation skills, listening, focus, self confidence and even Empathy.

Take a class!

Adult Classes Fall 2020

$200 includes UNLIMITED access to classes and shows through October 31

  • Saturdays 2pm Long Form Improv with Sam
  • Mondays 8pm Stand-Up Comedy with Walter
  • Tuesdays 8pm Musical Theater with Ryan
  • Wednesdays 8pm Improv Technique with Sam

Classes 4 Kids & Teens Fall 2020

$200 includes Unlimited access to classes in age range

  • Saturdays 9:30am in Central Park ONLY IN PERSON option at this time
  • Saturdays 12pm Comedy 4 Teens with Walter
  • Sundays Comedy 4 Teens with Walter SOLD OUT
  • Sundays 5pm Comedy 4 Kids with Andrea
  • Mondays 5pm Comedy 4 Kids with Ryan
  • Mondays 7pm Open Mic with Walter
  • Tuesdays 7pm Music with Ryan
  • Wednesday 7pm Improv Technique with Sam

Introduction: Stand-Up Comedy Easy 4-Step Guide to Writing and Performing Original Comedy Routines

Introduction: Stand-Up Comedy Easy 4-Step Guide to Writing and Performing Original Comedy Routines

While this book can be used as a step by step beginner’s guide to starting a career in comedy, I hope far more will learn to enjoy creating laughs, for the sake of creating laughter. 

Comedy courses should be in every school in the world. There is no better way to find your individual voice. There is no more enjoyable way to learn creative writing and public speaking skills.  

In my Times Square, New York City school for comedy, I combine stand-up and improv comedy. In addition to working with hundreds of kids and teens every year, I present team building workshops for major corporate clients.  

Perhaps the most valuable takeaways from comedy classes are building self-confidence and sharing much needed laughter.  

“According to most studies, people’s number one fear is public speaking. Number two is death. Death is number two. Does that sound right? This means to the average person, if you go to a funeral, you’re better off in the casket than doing the eulogy.”   
– Jerry Seinfeld 

Whenever I get a call for a corporate workshop, one of the first questions I get is, “Will this embarrass anyone?”  

Stage Fright is a specific, and very common, type of fearing the unknown. One of my missions in life is to teach people to overcome fear. One cannot experience joy if always in fear of judgment, or worse. After ten years of teaching comedy this is the number one benefit.  

Teaching traditional public speaking to kids that fear public speaking is often like hitting your head against the brick wall. Making it fun changes the game. Students take more chances. Once you get them hooked you can swing around to the technical tedium and terms of writing. Always focus on the fun first.  

I have seen incredibly shy, often terrified, students break out of their shells after minutes in a comedy class. We create a fun space to play, free of judgment. We remove ego and insecurity from the equation.  

Laughter IS the Best Medicine! 

Everyone has heard this phrase used literally and sarcastically over the years. New studies say it might be true.  

Before 2008 we were performing in schools and corporate events non–stop. The only requirement was providing a fun show appropriate to the setting: G-rated for schools, non-offensive to corporate parties.  

After 2008, when the stock market crashed, every penny had to be justified. We learned to promote our shows and workshops with more educational value in mind. Our mantra was building creativity, community and leadership. We paired with Cultural Arts, Language Arts and Character-Building curriculum.  

Skip ahead to 2015, when Google releases the findings of its Project Aristotle, a four-year study into team success. The result of thousands of interviews with team leaders within Google and every other industry (Arts, Sports, Business etc.) leads to one answer. 

This changed our focus 100%. It also led to discovering studies into the effect and benefits of laughter. 

The following is from the Mayo Clinic: 

A good sense of humor can’t cure all ailments, but data is mounting about the positive things laughter can do. 

Short-term benefits 

  • Stimulate many organs. Laughter enhances your intake of oxygen-rich air, stimulates your heart, lungs and muscles, and increases the endorphins that are released by your brain. 
  • Activate and relieve your stress response. A rollicking laugh fires up and then cools down your stress response, and it can increase and then decrease your heart rate and blood pressure. The result? A good, relaxed feeling. 
  • Soothe tension. Laughter can also stimulate circulation and aid muscle relaxation, both of which can help reduce some of the physical symptoms of stress. 

Long-term effects 

  • Improve your immune system. Negative thoughts manifest into chemical reactions that can affect your body by bringing more stress into your system and decreasing your immunity. By contrast, positive thoughts can actually release neuropeptides that help fight stress and potentially more-serious illnesses. 
  • Relieve pain. Laughter may ease pain by causing the body to produce its own natural painkillers. 
  • Increase personal satisfaction. Laughter can also make it easier to cope with difficult situations. It also helps you connect with other people. 
  • Improve your mood. Many people experience depression, sometimes due to chronic illnesses. Laughter can help lessen your depression and anxiety and may make you feel happier. 

(April 05, 2019 https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/stress-management/in-depth/stress-relief/art-20044456

Additional studies show that laughter in the classroom increases test scores. If you are a teacher, I recommend learning to use comedy in your presentations.  

Our experience is simple. Students having more fun show up to learn, including in our after-school programming and residencies.  

Principals tell me my students average higher attendance rates in general. They will show up, sit through math and history, knowing that the fun times are coming soon. 

In my public programs at the Broadway Comedy Club, Times Square, NYC, I have had students come back every week for years. Most of my teen students started when they were as young as seven. Many of my students are getting national recognition, winning awards and getting industry attention.  

I could not be prouder. Creating professional comedians was never my goal. Next thing you know Kenan Thompson named my twelve-year-old student, “Funniest Kid in America”. I was in tears watching all my students that day at Caroline’s on Broadway

LIVE Show for Brooklyn School

ThiPrivate show performed for sixth graders at St. Ann’s in Brooklyn Heights, NYC. featuring Walt Frasier, Amelia Fowler, Liz Lord, Ivana Mendez, Samuel Van Wyk. Online School Assemblies and Workshops available. Great fun for corporate groups and private family functions too!

ONLINE COMEDY CLASSES with Walt Frasier

Drop by at $25/class, $75/four week session includes additional private coaching. We combine Improv and Stand-Up comedy to maximize training in performance, creative writing and critical thinking as well as public speaking, social skills, team skills and self confidence.

Other Performance Classes Online

ONLINE COMEDY SHOWS

CLICK HERE to register for FREE OR donate $5 to help us continue paying these artists for there work. We are also hosting private events for corporate teams, schools, family gatherings etc. Our unique off-Broadway musical comedy revue style is perfect for any event. EMAIL us for more information.