The 3rd Annual Scripted Comedy Festival Workshops

sheltonImprov to Stand-Up – Judith Shelton

If you’ve been curious about Stand-Up but don’t know where or how to start, this two-hour workshop will help! I have worked with many, many Improvisers and I’ve found you make pretty good comics because you’re agile and can think on your feet. In this fun and gentle workshop I will explain the Open Mic process, how to prepare for them, give you links to find them and how to write specifically for Stand-Up. You’ll improvise at the mic a little, write a little and perform a little. After this workshop, you will feel more confident that you can make the transition, too! Please come with a notebook, pens and a recording device. Most folks use an app on their smartphone, but any sound recorder will do. Please be on time.

Judith began her career in Hollywood as an Actor and Stand-Up Comic. Her very first role was playing Kramer’s girlfriend Sally on the much-loved television show Seinfeld and she was a series regular on the CBS sitcom, The Gregory Hines Show. As a Stand-Up she has performed at The Comedy Store, The Improv, The Laugh Factory, The Ice House, Flappers and UCB as well as many indie comedy venues around town. She began studying at iOWest after a friend brought her to a King Ten show. She immediately fell in love with iO and Improv, worked in the box office three nights a week for a year, graduated from the program, landed on a Main Stage Harold team and created her show RELATIONSH!T which played at iO on the Main Stage for two and a half years. Not coincidentally, during this time she started working pretty regularly in many national commercials including Nike, Capital One, Vicks, Hallmark, Priceline, Sherwin-Williams and Visa. Five years ago, Judith began teaching Stand-Up on a lark to Improvisers as a way to help them expand their talents and become more comfortable playing themselves. Eighty-seven class sessions and hundreds of students later, she teaches sold-out classes to many performers and non-performers alike. From established Comics and Improvisers to stay-at-home moms/dads, lawyers, psychotherapists, musicians, schoolteachers, writers, software designers and corporate nine-to-fivers. For more information about Judith or her classes please visit her website

Saturday, March 28 @ 2pm -The Loft   Register Now

IMG_8911xxABANDON SCRIPT! : An Improvised Approach to Scripted Work – Will Doughty

Take improv training into scripted auditions and performances.  Abandon Script! takes scene study methods and injects improv as an approach to the work.  Learn how to take the words on the page and make them feel as if you are improvising the scene. The result will have you working in a more immediate and effective process when preparing for auditions and working on set.  All actors will prepare cold-read scenes and then improvise those same scenes.  Find out how to create grounded, believable characters from within you and instantly bring life off the page. Let go of what you know and get ready to Abandon Script!
Will Doughty has been training and performing sketch and improv for almost 20 years. He has performed in Minneapolis, San Francisco, Austin, New York  and LA. He has trained with Comedy Sportz (MN), Brave New Workshop (MN) iO West, and U.C.B. Will Doughty Co-Produced and hosted Crashbar Improv for 5 years.  His television credits include: Showtime, Comedy Central and The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Will currently teaches Abandon Script! twice a month in Los Angeles. His students have booked roles on: Parks and Recreation (NBC),  Californication (SHOWTIME), Ash vs. Evil (STARZ) and Masters of Sex (SHOWTIME).

Saturday, March 28 @ 4pm -The DCT   Register Now

ed-lee-smStory Structure For Sitcom Pilots & Specs – Ed Lee

Television writer and iO West instructor Ed Lee will discuss how television episodes – including pilots – are structured, and how you can apply it to your writing so your television scripts can have the best possible impact on your audience.

Ed Lee has written for several TV shows including “Norm,” “The Drew Carey Show,” “Class of 3000,” and “Are You There, Chelsea?”, and has worked in punch-up rooms for many sitcom pilots. He currently teaches television writing classes at iO West, UCLA Extension, and through

Saturday, March 28 @ 2pm -The Del Close Theater

kevin-mcdonald-smWrite a Sketch with Kev – Kevin McDonald
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Join the good Kevin McDonald from the great Kids in the Hall for a 2 hour sketch writing workshop. The workshop will also be great – which means it will be better than Kevin. Kevin will start things the class off with his theories of writing a good sketch and then will get the class to spritz sketch ideas with him. He will pick one idea and then he and the class will write an actual sketch right in class! Sounds like fun – well as much fun a a boring guy like Kevin can give. So come and have fun with Kevin. He needs fun. He’s boring.

McDonald founded The Kids in the Hall with his friend Dave Foley. Since The Kids in the Hall’s end in 1994, he’s played many roles in movies like Boy Meets Girl, Agent Pleakley in the Lilo & Stitch series, and Harry Potter inEpic Movie. On TV, he has appeared on The Martin Short ShowEllen (as a radio personality), That ’70s Show (as a confused young cleric, Pastor Dave),SeinfeldFriendsNewsRadio (on which Foley starred), MADtvArrested Development, and Corner Gas. McDonald has also done voice work for various animated series, including Invader Zim (in which he did the voice for Almighty Tallest Purple), The Angry BeaversCatscratch (in which he voiced Waffle), andClerks: The Animated Series. He also played an imaginary friend named Ivan in the Foster’s Home for Imaginary Friends episode Sight For Sore Eyes, and appeared in the music video for “Roses” by Outkast.

Monday, March 23 @ 2pm -The iOWest Main Stage  

brian-stack-smConan 101 – Brian Stack

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Learn the ins and outs of working on the late night TV talk show Conan O’Brien from one of the shows longest running employees. From writing to performing to editing, Brian Stack as seen it all and will share those insights with you.

Brian Stack became a sketch writer on Late Night with Conan O’Brien in 1997, and served as a writer, actor and editor on the show and after O’Brien’s move to The Tonight Show in 2009. Stack played many recurring characters on the show, most notably those clad in anachronistic or elaborate outfits, and was known for playing many characters with long beards and mustaches, such as God, Zeus, Socrates, Gandalf, and The Interrupter. Stack made occasional appearances on The Tonight Show, such as when he played an NRA spokesman who intimates violence to accomplish his agenda. Stack continued his work on O’Brien’s TBS series, Conan.

Sunday, March 22 @ 12pm -The Del Close Theater


This workshop is geared for people auditioning for a sketch team for the first time, and anyone looking to upgrade and strengthen their character reel. We’ll focus on honing in on what you can do best and help you stand out more. Once we’ve figured that out, I’ll show you how to set up characters quickly, play their game clearly, and when to move onto the next. Everyone can do Frank Underwood, Minnesota Mom, and Frat Bro/Sorority Ditz. Let’s work on what only you can do.
Blake has character coached auditions for SNL, Just For Laughs, NCB and CBS Diversity Showcases, and people who’ve successfully gotten on sketch teams at iO West and UCB. He’s been on the iO West main stage sketch team The Mutiny since 2012, has coached the iO West main stage sketch team It’s The Cops! since 2013, and is the creator/director of the iO West indie sketch team program Sketch Pool. He’s also appeared on How I Met Your Mother, Raising Hope, 90201, The Soup, The Benchwamers, and various national commercials.

Sunday, March 29 @ 12pm -The Del Close Theater   Register Now

Screen Shot 2015-03-19 at 12.44.26 PMTurning Sketches Into Features: How To Structure a Screenplay – Julie Cross 

Learn how to turn your small funny writing into a longer funny feature screenplay, using tried and true structure methods from UCLA’s Masters Program in Screenwriting.

Julie Cross (who used to be Julie Mullen) did a bunch of improv, acted in TV shows, commercials, and theater, but the whole time, she was a closeted writer. After sketch shows and standup, she moved on to writing spec comedy scripts, pilots and features and got accepted to UCLA’s Masters Program in Screenwriting. She recently won Austin Film Festival’s original pilot award and sold a feature (which must remain top secret for a couple months).

Sunday, March 29 @ 4pm -The DCT  Register Now

Blackburn_Christine_497_xret2How To Tell A Worthy Story – Christine Blackburn

Tell your personal story with impact and clarity. Christine Blackburn is the creator and host of the highly acclaimed Story Worthy Podcast and the author of the new memoir “PIT To LAX: My Story Worthy Life.” She has recorded over 300 podcasts and has produced hundreds of live shows. Bring a story to class that you would like to work on…or an idea you are hoping to expand. You’ll leave class with a better understanding of what makes your story stand out and get noticed. See you guys there!
Christine Blackburn is a contributing writer for the Huffington Post, comedian, producer, host, and creator of the highly acclaimed Story Worthy Podcast and the game show, Shotgun Story Worthy. She runs her own company Story Worthy Media, which includes a social media consulting business. She has several clients including celebrities, writers and voice-over actors.

Saturday, March 28 @ 2pm -The DCT   Register Now

megan-grano-smCreating a Character Showcase Overview – Megan Grano


Learn the basics of putting together a strong character showcase so you are prepared when auditions come your way.

Megan has been teaching and coaching comedy for over a decade.She is also a performer and writer. You can see her full bio at

Saturday, March 28 @ 10am -The iOWest Main Stage

jason-horton-smTaking Your Comedy To A Bigger Stage: The Internet & Beyond – Jason Horton


You can write for the stage, but will it translate to video? You wrote it, now how to you produce it? You produced it, now how do you get people to look at it? You got people to look at it, but how do you get the RIGHT people to look at it, and turn it into an online resume, and even a career? Take your comedy, and put it front of hundreds, to thousands, and even millions of people. This workshop will focus on what works for video, how to produce it, and take a finished product and make it as accessible as possible on the Internet. The workshop will cover sketch writing for video, social media, some production, & turning your hard work into a vehicle for success.

Jason Horton is a Los Angeles comedian, actor, writer, & improviser. He can be seen in over 1 billion total video videos on the Internet, and written over 500 million viewed videos.  He has written commercial content for Foot Locker, Sony, Netflix, Nintendo. He can also be seen on TBS’ Conan, & his videos have been featured on Funny OrDie & Comedy Central’sTosh.0. Jason has written two feature films that have been optioned, one that started as an Internet video. He is a former writer for Rogue Films online & UCBComedy Originals, and a former staff writer/content creator at Maker Studios, and has done creative consulting for movies studios and reality TV.  He has been featured on Huffington Post, Forbes, & CNN. Jason produces content out of the YouTube Space LA, and has done project out of both YouTube London and New York. He is currently in pre-production with his web series “Yes, Vacancy” with WITv, in development with a pilot at SyFy, and a producer and host for the Game Show Network & American Funniest Videos.

Sunday, March 22 @ 2pm -The Del Close Theater

kate-purdy-smExperiencing the TV Writers Room – Kate Purdy

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We’ll discuss the unspoken culture of the writers’ room, and then collectively break an episode of TV to experience the feeling of the room.

Kate Purdy has written for Cold Case (CBS), MadTV (FOX), Cougar Town (ABC), Enlisted (FOX), BoJack Horseman (NETFLIX), and The McCarthy’s (CBS).  She is an iOWest alumna.

Sunday, March 29 @ 2pm -The Del Close Theater

You can also register for workshops via phone (323 926-7560), in person at The iO West Theater (6366 Hollywood Blvd.), or Online by clicking on the following button: Pay Online

A portion of the proceeds from the festival shows and workshops will benefit The Chris Farley House.

The Chris Farley House is a state-certified residential treatment program for recovering men and women. Sober, structured living, as well as case management and counseling, are available to assist with the transition to productive independent living and employment.

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