11th Annual Maydays Improv Retreat

“This place is amazing – it’s like Hogwarts for improvisers.”

How would you like to spend five days staying in a grand old house in the Dorset countryside, taking
your choice of improv classes in the company of some of the most lovely and talented people you’ll
ever meet?

If this sounds good to you, then we invite you to be part of the Maydays Improv Retreat from 19th-23rd September 2018.

Whether you’re new to improv, a seasoned veteran, or somewhere in between, you’ll come away
from this residential week refreshed, energised and inspired.

What is the Improv Retreat?

Quite simply, it’s an unforgettable experience.

Every September for the last 10 years, The Maydays – one of the most established and experienced
improv troupes in the UK – have taken over the stately Osho Leela spiritual centre and transformed
it into a unique improv school.

Around 60 attendees come from all over the country, and from all kinds of walks of life. Each day
these lucky people choose from a taster’s menu of 16 different classes. There are two sessions
before lunch and two more in the afternoon, with four class options to pick from for each session. So
everyone charts their own course through the day, picking the classes that most appeal to them.
In your downtime between classes you can relax in the café, take a well-earned nap in your room,
stroll the spectacular grounds, venture deeper into the surrounding countryside, or simply mingle
with the other guests and teachers and compare notes on the classes you’ve taken.

Then, every evening, you’ll be treated to performances from some world-class improvisers, and
you’ll see the techniques you’ve been studying come to life on stage.

On the final day, an afternoon showcase gives everyone the option of getting up and performing in
front of the entire group – improvising a scene or a song (or both) in a way that they might have
found unthinkable just a few days earlier. Then everyone hugs and goes home, counting the days
until next year.

Why you’ll like it:

  • The atmosphere at Osho Leela is buzzing – with so many fascinating creative types under
    one roof. You know those special, switched-on people you meet from time to time, the ones who are bright and kind and funny and generous and have a gleam in their eye? Imagine a
    houseful of them.
  • Each class you take is taught by a true improv master: a kind, wise soul who knows exactly
    how to help you raise your improv game in the most supportive environment imaginable. As
    the Maydays work their magic, your breakthroughs will come thick and fast.
  • You’ll laugh a lot. Really. A lot.
  • And the food is amazing.
  • And each morning kicks off with a dance party.

What you’ll learn:

Whether you want to brush up on your scene work, dig deeper into character, or explore the
possibilities of new improv styles and forms, you’ll get practical guidance and instruction that is
personally crafted to give you what you need. Here is just a taster of the classes that have been
offered in previous years:

  • Practical classes aimed at specific areas of improv: ‘Object Work,’ ‘Scenes, Scenes, Scenes,’
    ‘Move Your Body.’
  • Slightly more eclectic and tantalising topic areas: ‘Own that Joy!’ ‘Fail Big,’ ‘Totes Emosh.’
  • New styles and techniques: ‘Shakespeare’, ‘Musical improv,’ ‘Improv for One.’
  • Forms and structures: ‘The Harold,’ ‘The Deconstruction,’ ‘Living Room.’

You can stay in your comfort zone for some classes, and for others you can push yourself into scary
new areas that turn out not to be so scary after all.

You’ll find new confidence you didn’t know you had. You’ll reawaken your capacity for joy. You’ll
discover that you are a genius and a poet and an artist. And, best of all, you’ll make some truly
brilliant new friends into the bargain.

What you’ll say:

‘What an utterly magical week. How am I going to readjust to life in the real world?’

‘I feel like I’ve run away and joined the circus.’

‘Look at all these lovely nutters!’
– Mayday who shall remain nameless, gazing out at the assembled students

£555.00 – Book before the 19th August to receive a £50 Early Bird discount

Jason Chin Scholarship applicants need to apply before the 1st August, winner announced 1oth August

Lloydie is an improviser and writer who performs with MissImp in Nottingham and The Maydays in Brighton as well as in Two Seats Four Cheeks – the two person improv collaboration he has with fellow Mayday, Jenny Rowe. He has trained at The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York and The Annoyance Theatre in...
Jason is originally from Johannesburg and trained at ACT in Brighton and iO Chicago. He has been in and out of The Maydays since 2005. In 2012 he returned from two years in Cape Town where he co-founded the improvisation skills organisation Improv Cape Town, and established The Long Shots comedy troupe. He debuted his...
Joe’s mother was a piano and he has spent his life trying to get back in. He is a classically trained pianist and violinist having studied at Royal Holloway University. He is the Musical Director of The Treason Show and of course The Maydays, and a teacher of most things musical such as piano, A-Level...
Rhiannon Vivian has been improvising since 2008, performing regularly in London and Brighton with The Maydays, Dreamweaver Quartet, Bumper Blyton the Improvised Adventure and The Concept. She also writes and performs character comedy, and took both her solo shows (Doors To Manual and Office Meltdown) to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe three years running. Rhiannon has...
Jules Munns started improvising at the Guildhall School where he was a founder member of the Improsarios. After graduating, he co-founded the Nursery, where he is now Artistic Director. He performed with Music Box (5* FringeGuru and Remote Goat) and Friendly Fire before joining the Maydays in 2012. He directed the first run of Impromptu...
Liz Peters trained as an actress at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts and has worked extensively on stage and screen. She was nominated Best Female Performer at Brighton Fringe for Toybox, a musical comedy she wrote and produced, and has worked with British comedy institutions Newsrevue and The Treason Show, as well as in films, commercials and immersive theatre.  Liz travels the world performing...
John Cremer started in improv with Louis Anthony Russo in Arizona and then joined Essential Theatre Playback Company. Returning to his native Brighton in 2001 he founded the Maydays. John works with a diverse range of clients including Microsoft, Deloitte, T-Mobile, Rio Tinto, Airbus, Lloyds TSB, HTC, ADT and Vistage. He is the author of...
Rebecca is one of our founding members and taught the very first Maydays beginners course. She has trained at iO Chicago. As well as the Maydays she performs with Impromptu Shakespeare & The Improvised Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, and in the past has graced the stage with Mothers Uncorked, BiteSize, The Treason Show, Voodoo Vaudeville...
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 13 years, spent over a decade as half of the two-woman longform show...
Jen trained at ACT Brighton and now teaches there on a regular basis. Her credits includedreamthinkspeak (Underground) and Fringe-first nominated Bite-size Plays. She has toured withThe Foundry Group and played Ero in The Widow’s Tears for the Shakespeare’s Globe ‘Read Not Dead’ series. She is an actor, voiceover artist, writer and teacher, having worked with...
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