An Improvised Life

I didn't start out intending be an improv musician. I went to college to study music composition and performance.  At the same time I played in cover bands and original projects, did piano bar, played in pit bands for musicals, accompanied dance classes, played for weddings, etc. Little did I know how much all that would help me later doing improv.

During my junior year of college I got hired as a waitress at the famed Second City in Chicago. That's when I fell in love with improv.  A few years later, I was "demoted" to a musician (I made a lot more money as a waitress). I traveled the country in a crowded, stinky van with the national touring company, and met my husband, Rick Hall. (That's me with my cast, in the back row on the left, sporting an unfortunate haircut).

Later I opened a show on the then new Second City e.t.c. stage.  I also played at a lot of other venues in Chicago, including The Annoyance Theatre, Improv Olympic and Improv Institute. 

Later, when Rick and I moved to L.A. I thought I'd take a break from improv. I focused on songwriting, playing in bands, composing musicals and learning to score films. But life has a funny way of surprising you, and in 1998 my friend from our touring company days, Ron West, asked me to audition for Whose Line is it Anyway. Before I knew it, I was doing improv again! We've now done 15 years of Whose Line, between the Drew Carey and the Aisha Tyler versions.

Rick & I have gone on to teach music improv workshops all around the world. We've had amazing students, and had a great time working with them. We've made lots of friends in the world wide community of improvisers. 

Along with our pal, Luke Hannington, I've also developed Improv Karaoke -  tracks for doing music improv when you don't have a live musician.  Volume One includes a tutorial by Rick & I, plus demo versions improvised by some of our friends, including Keegan-Michael Key, Ron West and Dan Castellaneta.

Working with with improviser, author, teacher and musician, Bob Baker, I've written The Improv Comedy Musician, a book on how to play music with improv groups. I got to put in it everything I've learned from years of playing with so many talented improvisers.

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Calendar

"Improv! The Musical" with Laura Hall & Nick Condon

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Online Music Improv Workshop

Thrilled to be working with Nick Condon! Learn how to create your own Mini-Musicals on the spot! This two day intensive will introduce students to the fundamentals of improvised musical comedy and help take your songs and scenes to the next level. Learn to put your thoughts and emotions into improvised songs that sound like they've already been written as we explore rhythm and rhyme, common song structures with memorable hooks, and how they fit into a greater musical narrative.

Experience level: Intermediate some improv/musical experience required.

Saturday, June 26 & Sunday, June 27 11:00-2:00 PT both days (6 hours total)

Rick & Laura Hall Weekend Intensive

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Online Music Improv Workshops

We're so happy to be working again with our friends at Vintage Improv! This intensive will include an online performance at the end.

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