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Learn Comedy Online for Free from the First All-Down Syndrome Improv Cast

For many of us stuck at home during the coronavirus outbreak, we have been looking for activities to keep us occupied and entertained. If improv comedy has ever piqued your interest, Stand Up for Downs’ the Improvaneers, the first all-Down syndrome improv comedy group, just announced it will offer some of its signature comedy games for free online.

The Impovaneers will share three new improv comedy games each week through online Zoom sessions starting April 8. In an email announcement, Stand Up for Downs said the Improvaneer Method and improvisation “builds and develops important skillsets that will greatly increase social and workplace opportunities.”

The Improvaneers is the first improv group to consist solely of members who have Down syndrome. The group formed in April 2018 and gave its first live performance in 2019. Stand Up for Downs co-founder and Improvaneers founder Rob Snow, who has a son with Down syndrome, said he founded the group because improv skills, like thinking on your feet and collaborating with others, can provide practical life skills for people with disabilities. Improvaneers members like Nick Doyle said that participating in the group helped him learn new skills and built his confidence.

“I love being onstage with my castmates performing,” Doyle told The Mighty. “I love when I get laughs from the audience. It makes me feel like a rockstar. The training has helped me improve how I work with others and pay attention to what they are doing and saying.”

The Improvaneers Method sessions presented online during the COVID-19 pandemic will feature three new games each week for five weeks. For example, the first week features the game “quick think,” during which each participant must say the first thing that comes to mind about the assigned theme. Every improv game builds physical or cognitive skills that support people with intellectual or developmental disabilities.

The Improvaneers sessions are open to anyone, with a capacity of 100 participants per meeting. The first online class, which will be hosted on Zoom, starts Wednesday, April 8 at 2 p.m. EST, and runs every Wednesday through May 6. You can sign up for the Zoom classes in advance here.

If you are looking for additional online activities to keep you busy, check out what is happening this week at The Mighty.

Header Image via Stand Up for Downs’ Instagram