by Andy Phillips
When I moved to NYC to pursue acting, the best choice I made within the first year of being here was to take improv classes at the Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB). Regardless of your studio of choice, I believe that improv training is an amazing asset in any actor’s toolkit. Here are my top three reasons why I think it’s great for actors fresh to NYC.
1. Immersion into a Committed Creative Community
At UCB, if you miss more than two classes you’re out. Therefore what is created is a like-minded group of artists committed to the work and to supporting each other along the way. That type of community is invaluable and isn’t always found in random drop-in acting classes.
2. Access to Free Theatre
Most improv training programs include free admission to weekly shows with the cost of tuition. Being new to a city like New York, one of the most overwhelming things is the plethora of options available to you. How do you know which show to see or which theatre to go to first? Well, having the opportunity to see shows for free certainly narrows down the field. Plus your fellow classmates will probably be attending the shows as well. And there in lies the amazing community building that improv provides. Keep working and it just might be you and your new friends on that stage next!
3. Resume Boost
Having improv training will only help your resume. If you’re new to NYC then your resume probably needs a little boost. A reputable improv school will do just that. A quick wit and the ability to think on your feet are skills that transfer to every performance no matter the medium. Casting directors, talent reps, and theatre and film directors alike all don’t mind seeing that on a resume.