Weekend Improv Retreat

Hosted by The Last Minute Replacements

Outdoor group shots

Individual photos

Indoor group shots

The Last Minute Replacements hosted a weekend improv retreat on September 7th and 8th, 2019. All events were taught by experienced improv comedy trainers, including members of Phoenixville’s improv comedy team, The Last Minute Replacements, and special featured trainers Tessa Ricci, Founder of Philadelphia’s Liberty Improv Theatre, and Josh McCune, Co-Founder of Lancaster Improv Players!

What did it include?

Arrive Saturday by 2pm, drop your stuff on your bunk, and spend the next 24 hours eating, hanging out, and doing improv! We will have a mix of scheduled improv events and free time with various social activities available. We have the entire Covenant lodge to ourselves.. The rest of the campground may be shared with other groups.

Purchasing tickets: Tickets are sold out and sales are closed for 2019.

2020’s dates and ticket sales will be announced in early 2020.

Who was it for?

Anyone is invited! We welcome students of improv to experienced improvisers and comedians, spouses who don’t “do improv,” fans of improv, even friends who have never tried it! This event is for anyone who wants to get away and go to a grown-up improv sleep-away camp. 

What to Bring:

Bedding: all lodges have bunk beds with mattresses that fit twin sheets. Please bring either a bed sheet and blankets, or a sleeping bag, and a pillow
Towel for showering 
Appropriate pajamas
Your health insurance card in the event of an emergency
Any snacks and drinks (bottled water strongly suggested!)
Suitable clothing for camp including shoes that can be used outdoors
A flashlight
Phone and charger for photos and contact
Anything you’d like to cook over the fire Saturday night
Bug spray
Any snacks or drinks for between meals

Retreat Training Staff

Brian joined The Last Minute Replacements in 2019. He spends his time writing sad songs and pretending to be cool in the band Portable Tomorrow. He has been performing most of his life and has been teaching improv to children and teens since 2006. His comedy is largely influenced by Dashboard Confessional and failure.
“My dad is awesome. And I love him so much. My dad is so funny I laugh at MOST of his jokes. He does dad jokes but he’s very funny.” – Brian’s Daughter: Kitchen Table comedy reviewer.”

Daemon Blaszczyk is a founding member of The Last Minute Replacements. He has acted in Kutztown University’s Sunshine Players and as a cast member in an all improv Halloween show at Brinton Lodge. He is also the lead singer in a local cover band called Throwing Shade, and is an all around magnificent lover. 

David Gallop got his start when he joined his college improv team. With no previous on-stage experience of any kind, it was quite the change to perform monthly for 100-300 people. He quickly came to love it, and was soon leading the team. After graduating, David went looking for a great new improv group to join, but instead he found LMR in 2017. David has trained at UCB and will be bringing some of the skills he learned at UCB training to the retreat.

“Myke” (Kenneth Mykel Smith) became a leader of an improv team at college. From there, he’s done workshops, taught improv to kids/teens, performed at conventions and comedy events of up to 800 people. Myke is also an actor, with his most recent work being the main character of the award-winning short film “Grief”. He also has been credited with writing several comedy scripts on IMDb. Myke has a passion for kids, acting, and improv, and is always up for anything comedy. He does a large part of the marketing for LMR and is the founding member of the team.

Ned Strasbaugh found improv at Gettysburg College in 2010 the way you find love: it hit him hard in the face, made him feel queasy, and left him babbling like an idiot. But he gradually overcame these ticks and learned more about short form and long form, studied books and attended workshops, and even came to perform monthly in front of 75-100 people. When he graduated, he went on an improv sabbatical, looking for answers and experiences from Germany to alumni shows in Gettysburg, and at long last, he has found his way to LMR in 2019. If you feel bad for him, indulge him in his loves for Manchester United, philosophers, and craft beer.

Becky started hosting improv game nights after attending various improv workshops and classes, and finding that there was a need for a local, inexpensive workshop for beginners to be able to try improv without pressure or judgment, and without having to mortgage their homes or sell a necessary organ in order to do so. She was thrilled when she met other improvisers who wanted to perform, and so she became a founding member of LMR. She has performed at various venues throughout central Pennsylvania as well as in the Philadelphia region in a theatre and improv capacity, and hopes to continue playing improv games for funsies as long as anyone will tolerate her shenanigans.

Matty Routz “Rowdy” has performed in multiple troupes spanning 3 states and has been a guest star in several other improv troupes. He has been leading and doing workshops since 2008 and loves performing, and is a founding member of LMR.

Steph’s had a love for improv since middle school, although she only joined her first improv team in college at West Chester University. She’s been performing with LMR since 2015. Since joining, she has become improv-obsessed; she studies improv in her spare time, reading improv books and watching improv videos and discussing anything improv related with her husband (Myke). She has taken multiple advanced improv classes through White Pines Productions and now she co-hosts practices and workshops. Steph recently had the opportunity to play a game on stage with Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood from “Whose Line is it Anyway”. She is a pretty big deal now.

Tessa Ricci is the founder and Executive Director of Liberty Improv Theatre in Philadelphia. She graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Education and Social Policy. Her first job out of school was working for IDEO, a human-centered design firm rooted in design thinking and empathy. She first took to the stage at age three when she tackled the nuanced role of “snowflake” in The Wizard of Oz. Since then, she’s performed in musical theater, a Capella concerts, tap recitals, and comedy. Tessa trained at American Improv Theater in San Jose, CA and performed on their all-women’s house team, touring around the Bay Area. She has taught improvisers of all ages, from teens to corporate professionals. 

Josh McCune is a co-founder of the Lancaster Improv Players. He has been performing improv and stand up comedy for the past six years at the collegiate and semi-professional levels. He specializes in a hybridization of Short-form and Long-form improv that focuses on building character relationships and heightening the intensity of the scene. He has taught improv in both Bucks County and Lancaster for the past two years to both high school and adult level students. He has performed all over Pennsylvania, New York, and Maryland.