I attended the Virginia Commonwealth University: Brandcenter for a Master’s degree in advertising. While I was there, I got an internship at DDB in Chicago. Six of us from class received internships in Chicago and all shared a house out there. One of our housemates was deep into comedy and took writing classes at Second City. Her teacher let a few of us audit the class and on the weekends, we saw improv for free. We all loved the improv and wanted to do it, but we were slammed in our advertising gigs.
After graduating VCU Brandcenter, I freelanced in South Carolina and then landed my first full time job in Madison, WI. Our creative director, Barry, who had taken classes at Second City in Chicago, required that we get to work by 8am every Wednesday morning to start doing improv with the creative team for 1 hour. I think it was the 2nd or 3rd week my boss pulled me aside and told me I was really good at this and should take improv classes. I looked around for places to study and found a Comedy Sportz in the area.
I took Comedy Sportz classes in Madison for around 6 month with Ed Herro. One day (yes, this story will not sound real but it totally is), I got a random call from a copywriter in NY. He said he had seen my portfolio online and wanted to offer me a job at Publicis. I said, “I’ve never been to NY. Can I fly out there to meet you first?” He said, “Sure, but we can’t pay for it.” So I flew out to NY, met the creative team, and took the job.
In my last class with Ed at Comedy Sportz, I told him the story and he ripped out a sheet of paper and listed places for me to live, people to meet, and at the very top, in big letters, he wrote “go to the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater.”
And so it began…