fun and playful Harolds!
Harold improv course
An advanced course to learn how to perform The Harold in a fun and playful spontaneous Hoopla style with Maria Peters. 8 week course with a performance at the end.
The Harold is a long-form improv format originally invented by Del Close in the 1960s and then further developed by Del Close and Charna Halpern at iO Theatre in Chicago in the 1980s. Their work inspired improvisers like John Belushi, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Tina Fey and a lot of modern sitcoms are based on Harold structures.
The format involves exploring three different worlds from a fun opening and revisiting those scenes and characters to explore connections, patterns and themes that emerge like magic for the audience.
Katy Schutte has studied with the co-founder of The Harold format Charna Halpern (iO), who is also director of The iO Theatre Chicago and author of Truth in Comedy. Katy has also trained with Rachael Mason (Second City), Susan Messing (Annoyance) and numerous instructors from The UCB Theatre, NYC.
She is now running a course to combine these different styles with her own unique take on The Harold. We aim is to help you perform a Harold that is fun and funny while exploring themes, emotions, relationships and deeper theatrical ideas.
We will teach a variety of styles and techniques for performing The Harold, giving you the freedom to choose what works for you and what you enjoy.
Most of all we aim to make performing The Harold feel fun, playful and joyous without having to worry about the structure or rules when performing.
Harold from the heart.
dates, time, location
Date: Every Wednesday for 8 weeks from Wednesday 11th September 2019, with show on Monday 4th November 2019. BOOK NOW
Time: 7pm – 9:30pm.
Teacher: Katy Schutte.
Price: £230. Either payable all at once or with an initial payment of £100 followed by the remaining £130 once the course starts.
Venue: St. Hugh’s Hall, corner of Crosby Row and Porlock Street, London Bridge, .
Tube: London Bridge.
Teaches the skills you’ll need to master scenes, stories and sketches in a relaxed environment.
If improvisation floats your boat you should head to Hoopla.
Hoopla's workshops are supportive and collaborative.
Inspiring. Everywhere you look, huge grins suggest an enthusiasm and an attentiveness that is rarely seen in a course.
The capital’s best improv. The UK’s first improv comedy club.
teacher Katy Schutte
Katy trained at Second City and iO Chicago as well as with teachers from Annoyance, UCB and more.
She is a Funny Women finalist and winner of the Brighton Festival Fringe Best Comedy Show award.
Katy has performed with the Maydays for 11 years. In 2014 Katy created Oh Boy! The Quantum Leap Show, which returned to Edinburgh in 2015.
She performs in sci-fi improv group Project2, and produces and performs in Geekeasy the comedy night for nerds.
She also performed at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe with their Ghostbusters themed musical “Who Ya Gonna Call?” which received rave reviews. She also made her first solo theatre show I Have an Idea for a Film at the Edinburgh Fringe.
She is half of the two woman long form show Katy and Rach, and plays in the Destination podcast and live shows.
She coaches long form teams and leads workshops in England, Europe and the States. Katy was one of the first people to teach the rest of the Hoopla team, and inspired us to create various shows.
She has toured with Fluxx, improvised musicals with Music Box and Baby Wants Candy and notably guested in the London and Liverpool Improvathons, Grand Theft Impro and Messing with a Friend.
Katy is also a sketch comedian, actress and theatre-maker.
Katy is currently working on Knightmare Live and being a nerd consultant for a new Gonzo Moose show.
We’ll be covering a variety of topics and themes over the course, and also responding to the needs of the group.
Weeks 1 and 2:
- Bonding the group as a team.
- Revisiting improv scene basics.
- Introducing vocabulary of The Harold.
- Structure of The Harold.
- Physical openings.
- Different ways to link scenes.
- Tangential scene jumps.
- Thematic scene jumps.
- Narrative scene jumps.
- Heightening scenes and character.
- Different styles of scenes including funny, relationship, theatrical, emotional, world view scenes.
- Scenes that reflect society.
- Playing and resting games.
- Reincorporating and call backs.
- Group games.
- Variety of openings to start a show.
- Discovering themes and patterns.
- How to find and ending.
- Running lots of Harolds with helpful notes from Katy.
- Performing Harolds without thinking about it and without worrying about structure.
- Perform Harolds in a fun, playful, flowing and joyous way.
The exact topics and themes will vary depending on the group and will be developed as the course goes on.
What comes after this course?
We have a variety of other advanced improv courses that would be suitable.
Who is this suitable for?
People with previous long-form improv experience who want to learn and experiment with some new formats.
How much improv or acting should I have done before doing this course?
You should have done our Level 4 Improv Course or a similar amount somewhere else. This course is not suitable for people new to improv.
Can I do it if I’ve already done some Harolds before?
Yes. This is going to be Hoopla's own unique version of it and there should be some new stuff for you. It's not Harold by numbers, it's Harold from the heart.
What if I can’t make every week?
As we’re forming a team over the course to do performances at the end it’s best not to miss more than one session over the course. If you think you’ll miss more than one sessions over the course please wait until another time to do the course. You won’t be able to do the show if you miss more than two sessions.
What if I’m running late?
We’ll be starting each session at 7pm, and you may not be able to take part in the workshop if you arrive after 7:15pm. This is an advanced course and we’re trying to form a team, so please don’t book this course if you are likely to be late on a regular basis.
What’s the class size?
The group size is going to be limited to 15 people - small enough that you get lots and lots of practice and stage time, but big enough that there’s still a lively atmosphere in the workshop. It’ll be fun as we get to know each other and build a team together.
Where is the show?
The show takes place at our improv comedy club, at The Miller, 96 Snowsfields Road, London Bridge, SE1 3SS.
Do I have to perform in the show at the end?
No. The show is optional, and you’ll still get loads out of the course without doing the show.
Can I pay by instalments?
Yes. You can book and pay the £100 first instalment (non-refundable) and pay the remaining £130 once the course starts.