• character

character course

Available in-real-life with Maria Peters from The Playground, and also as an online version with Lauren Shearing from Showstoppers & Austentatious AND Andrew Gentilli from Beings & Music Box.

Expand your character range and go beyond your default characters.

We all have certain characters that we go to in improv, from naturalistic to larger than life. We will be providing fun energetic exercises and helpful feedback to help you to get out of your comfort zone and find new ways of improvising characters and expand your character range.

We will be teaching a variety of great tools to help find characters in improv including Physicality, Inspiration from Animals, Voice, Tempo and more.

We’ll be putting this all together to improvise fun yet believable characters that have depth, as even the weirdest of weirdo characters have feelings too!

We’ll then be looking at how to hold your character with relationships in longer scenes as they are put into various situations with lots and lots of scene and character practice.

Most of all it’s going to be LOADS of fun with a fun and energetic teaching style.

This course is suitable for all levels except if you are totally new to improv it would be best to start with our beginners improv course first.

real-life version:


Every Monday for 8 weeks from Monday 11th January 2021. (3 places left) BOOK NOW

Every Thursday for 8 weeks from Thursday 8th October 2020. SOLD OUT

Time: 7pm – 9pm each week.

Price: £230. Either payable all at once or with an initial payment of £100 followed by the remaining £130 once the course starts.

Teacher: Maria Peters.

Venue: Theatre Delicatessen Studios, 2 Finsbury Avenue, London, EC2M 2PP.

Tube: Liverpool Street or Moorgate.

Covid-19 Safety & Flexibility

We have booked large spacious rehearsal rooms and have kept class sizes low to ensure 2 metre distancing can stay in place. We have also redesigned games to make sure physically-distanced improv is still fun, friendly and playful! We also offer full flexibility on bookings to give you peace of mind when planning ahead.

>> Safety in classes

>> Full booking flexibility

>> Improv is more fun than ever!

online version:


Every Thursday for 4 weeks from Thursday 26th November 2020. SOLD OUT

Every Wednesday for 4 weeks from Wednesday 9th September 2020. SOLD OUT

Every Tuesday for 4 weeks from Tuesday 21st July 2020. SOLD OUT

Every Thursday for 4 weeks from Thursday 2nd July 2020. SOLD OUT

Time: 7pm – 9pm each week.

Teacher: Lauren Shearing (3 weeks) AND Andrew Gentilli (1 week).

Venue: Online using zoom. All details for login for zoom will be emailed to participants on the day of the first workshop.

The above course is online:

1. Book your place on this page.

2. On the day of the first workshop we will email you log-in for the zoom chat.

3. You then click on the link in the email to join the zoom chat and enter password.

4. You will just need a laptop with camera and internet connection, everything else will be in the link. Laptops work better than ipads and phones for improv over Zoom.

5. Don’t worry if you haven’t used Zoom before, we start the first session with an overview of how to use it.

maria peters

Maria performs in Breaking & Entering and co-produces The Playground, which along with Lauren Shearing she has grown to be one of London’s most popular improv nights.

Maria has performed at numerous international improv festivals including Estonia, The Netherlands, Philadelphia, Portugal & Dublin.

She has studied with Charna Halpern, the founder of iO Chicago and author of Truth in Comedy, who originally developed The Harold with Del Close.

She has also studied with Keith Johnstone, Upright Citizens Brigade in New York and Second City in Chicago.

To top it all off Maria is a professional educator. Having spent over 10 years in learning, training & informal education, she understands the fundamentals of passing on knowledge in interactive & engaging ways.

Maria believes it’s paramount to put her students’ needs first and always creates a friendly, relaxed environment where the goal in every class is to learn new things while having a bloody good time!

lauren shearing

Lauren is a cast member of Austentatious: An improvised Jane Austen Novel and Showstopper! The Improvised Musical, two of the biggest improv shows in the UK with regular performances on the West End and in theatres nationwide.

She is also a regular guest with the world renowned improv troupe The Comedy Store Players and also with The Yes Queens at The Boulevard Theatre.

She is one half of improv double act Breaking & Entering with Maria Peters, and one third of three-woman improv troupe Anxiety Club with Charlotte Gittins and Briony Redman.

Lauren is also a co-founder of The Playground, a sell-out night of improvisation at Hoopla Impro that showcases new female talent and brings together some of the most experienced improvisers in the country. She’s built a vibrant community of improvisers and turned The Playground into Hoopla’s most popular show.

She has trained at iO Theatre in Chicago.

andrew gentilli

Andrew trained as an actor at The Oxford School of Drama and Drama Centre London before going on to study improvisation at iO Chicago, UCB New York, The Loose Moose Theatre in Canada and various masterclasses across Europe and, of course, Hoopla!

He performs in Music Box the Improvised Musical and Beings with Susan Harrison, two of Hoopla’s most popular shows. He also founded short-form team The Inflatables and long-form play troupe Storybag. He has performed at improv festivals around the world.

He is a professional voiceover artist, specialising in character voices and celebrity impersonations.

Andrew’s focus in improv is on creating vivid characters and relationships to make engaging scenes and narratives, and bringing a positive spirit to short, long, or freeform improv.