What is Improvisation?

The Improv Intensive has been developed for every teacher and administrator engaged in Christian Education. Participants will be introduced to the unique approach of improv pedagogy in five days of challenging games and on-your feet exercises. By the end of the week, students will have dozens of new games they can use for icebreakers, idea-generation, group bonding, and just plain fun! They will also be exposed to the core perspectives that make improv training so powerful: play as a core learning strategy, acting vs. judging, the essentiality of failure, primacy of character over product, truly communal creation, mistakes as gifts, and instant adaptation.

Why Improvisation?

Second City makes more money from it’s training program for businesses than from all its live improv shows combined. Corporations clearly value improv training – yet most educational institutions all but ignore it. What do corporations know that our schools do not? What do they need from employees on their staff that we failed to teach them when they were students in our classrooms?  This course will enable educators and students to collaborate more effectively, create more freely and connect more fully, deeply, and meaningfully with their colleagues, peers, and students.

What educators and business leaders are saying about Improvisation!

"Richard Peters is one of the most dynamic and creative educators I know. Building on his professional acting career, Richard sees improvisation not only as an amazing tool in learning drama, but as an essential skill for all of us in a world that is changing at a rapid pace. Richard has completely transformed TDChristian's drama program to make it an essential part of the school's core learning for all students. In addition, advanced improv students in Richard's program compete on the national stage with phenomenal success. We need only look at our current educational context to realize that all of us are improvisors now. Whether you're a drama teacher or not, allow Richard to help you learn skills that can empower you to meet new, often unexpected challenges with competence and even joy.”
Justin Cook, Director of Learning, Edvance Christian Schools Association
"Richard's improv sessions are informative and engaging; he even wins over us cynics. He pushes without provoking. Richard reads the room and adapts his session to respond to our responses and questions.”
Ben Freeman, OCT, CSTC, B.Sc., B.Ed.
"As a physics teacher, I was skeptical of the value of improv. Since experiencing it, I can't think of another discipline that has strengthened my teaching (and parenting!) skills more."
David Robinson, OCT, CSTC, B.Sc., B.Ed.
"Besides offering excellent insight into the art and craft, Richard brings a loving and compassionate heart, filled with unrivalled honesty - his stories and teachings able to melt the facade so many of us hold, bringing a contrite heart before the Lord. A superb teacher.”
Jonathan Horlings, Innovation Director, Edu-Deo Ministries
“I brought Richard in to teach my Divinity Students at McMaster University annually. His gentle passion, keen insights, and playful nature consistently brought out the best in my class.”
Joyce Bellous, Taylor Seminary
“Improvisation is a depth charge. You think it's all just fun and games and then, "pow!" you realize you've just been hit with a profound truth about life, and your perspective has changed forever. And not just once. It. Happens. All. The. Time.”
Jade Hoekstra, currently in her 3rd year of the Brock Teacher Education Program
“Richard’s workshops are a lot of fun, very engaging, and insightful. He comes well prepared and brings depth - but is accessible by young and old, novice and experienced alike.”
Terry Lee, Lead Pastor at Okotoks Alliance Church

Richard Peters is an actor, writer, director, and teacher at Toronto District Christian High. In 2004 he founded BrokenOpen Theatre – Canada’s only company of professional actors specializing in teaching Christians. He has taught theatre at Tyndale University, and guest lectured at Rocky Mountain College, Providence College and Redeemer University, to name a few. As an actor with Brookstone Performing Arts, he was in the ensemble that wrote 2000 Candles, a production that toured across Canada for the better part of a decade. In the past 4 years, the team Richard coaches for the Canadian Improv Games have taken Bronze once and Gold twice at the Toronto Regional Tournament. They are currently ranked 11th in Canada.

Originally hailing from Vernon, Richard holds a BFA from the University of Alberta’s Acting Conservatory, and has trained with BadDog Theatre, The Assembly, and Second City (all in Toronto), the Vancouver TheatreSports League, as well as Second City & iO Theatre (Chicago). He will be graduating from the Institute for Christian Studies in Toronto with an MA-EL (teaching stream, with a specific emphasis on teaching improvisation) this fall.

Richard gave up on the NHL after Vancouver lost in 2011, and his wife (actress Jane Miller) jokes that he replaced his sports addiction with improv – so he is thrilled to be back in BC to share what has become his greatest joy of the last decade!