Creative Corporate Training demo Monday May 20th 12 noon!

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Monday May 20th, 12 noon

Free demonstration

Benjamin Lloyd facilitates with three Bright Invention performance assistants for a recent CCT workshop

Benjamin Lloyd facilitates with three Bright Invention performance assistants for a recent CCT workshop

Bright Invention's Creative Corporate Training program employs an innovative, scenario-based approach to team-building, customer service and workplace culture enhancement. We use structured improvisations we design specifically for each client, which embody issues or themes the client wants their team to examine. 

Unlike other improv-based training programs, we do not make you role play! We do the acting - you do the problem solving.

Monday May 20th 

Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia
Conference Center, Engagement Room, 
200 S. Broad St, Suite 700, Philadelphia, PA 19102

  • Note new time: Social time 11:30 am - 12 noon

  • Demo 12 noon - 12:45 PM

  • Free - refreshments served

  • Bring friends!

Please RSVP

Check out our slide show:



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Our mailing address is: 
Bright Invention PO Box 8870 Elkins Park, PA  19027
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"How do you do that . . . ?"

Benjamin Lloyd and Shea Sonsky in an improv scene at Bright Invention rehearsal

Benjamin Lloyd and Shea Sonsky in an improv scene at Bright Invention rehearsal

One of the most frequent comments we get after our shows is . . . “how do you do that?” Our audiences are interested in which parts of the show we know about in advance and which parts we don’t. So we thought we’d take you behind the curtain for bit, and share a show with you on video.

Most actors rehearse and perform scripts. Improv actors rehearse and perform forms (or formats). A form is a sequence of performed events, and that’s what we practice and memorize - a sequence of events. A script is also a sequence of events, but with a script what happens in those events is predetermined. Not so with improv.

Suzanne Anderson and Kaitlin Chin in an improv scene at Bright Invention rehearsal

Suzanne Anderson and Kaitlin Chin in an improv scene at Bright Invention rehearsal

Our form is a called The Sun and its Planets. It is unique to Bright Invention, and it was developed over a year or so, led by Artistic Director Benjamin Lloyd. It follows one central relationship through three “acts”, as the pair in that relationship evolve and meet some interesting and occasionally hilarious people along the way. That central scene is “the Sun scene”. The other actors who appear around it are “the Planets.”

Here is the Sun and its Planets sequence every member of Bright Invention knows by heart:

  1. Sun scene act 1 (actors A & B)

  2. Dueling monologues (actors C & D)

  3. Sun scene act 2 (actors A & B)

  4. Dueling monologues (actors E & F)

  5. Sun scene act 3 (actors A & B)

  6. Final monologues ( actors ? & ?)

Ideally we have six actors for this form (we can do it with four): two as the Sun scene, and four as the Planets. The content of the form is inspired by a conversation we have with our audience before we begin. We perform this form again and again . . . and we’ve never done the same show twice!

Now here's what we don’t know before we perform The Sun and its Planets:

  • which of us will be the Sun scene and which of us will be the Planets.

  • who the characters will be in the Sun scene, how they are connected, where they are, and what they are working out together.

  • who the Planet characters are, when/if they will appear in the Sun scenes, and what they do or talk about.

  • who will do the first dueling monologues and who will do the second dueling monologues and who they will be and what they will talk about.

Want to learn more? Consider joining us this summer for our Summer Improv Jam on Thursday nights!

Meanwhile - here’s a video of The Sun and its Planets as performed on April 6th, 2019. It features Benjamin Lloyd, Kiersten Adams, Aimee Goldstein, Eric Walker Jr., Shea Sonsky, Bob Stineman and Suzanne Anderson.


Creative Corporate Training wows the Community Associations Institute!

Last month, our Creative Corporate Training program was hired by the Community Associations Institute to create a workshop for their annual gathering. CAI represents executives that manage condominium and co-op estates and residential developments. These are intense person-to-person positions, as these professionals must serve all the various residents at developments that have up to 300 units. Conflict between residents, complaints and hardship are all situations these professionals must deal with.

CCT created three different scenarios to examine three different challenging situations faced by CAI members. These three scenarios were created in consultation with CAI Executive Director Tony Campisi. “The feedback we received about CCT’s work from our members was enthusiastic,” Tony reports. “CCT delivered two hours of content which was fun, insightful and useful - a trifecta!”

Check out a picture gallery and videos from our work with CAI. Remember, our scenarios always show an encounter that goes badly - then the team being served diagnoses the problem, and we re-play it with their suggestions :

Above video: “Residents in Conflict”

New ensemble photos by Sarah Bloom Photography!

We invited professional photographer Sarah Bloom into our rehearsal recently and she took some pix! Check out the gallery below. Next show is STAR WARS DAY! May the Fourth be with you - the force is strong in this Improvasushi!

2019 April letter from Ben: Improv = personal transformation.

Recently I got a letter from an improv student of mine:

“I can't tell you the impact that this class is having on me even in such a short amount of time.  I was moved to tears after class last night as I let the beauty of the experience sink in.  

Your focus on helping us build deeper connection and trust with each other has been so meaningful and powerful for me.  For so much of my life I have felt drained by the surface-level connections that most others in my world have maintained.  I've also experienced much difficulty with connections, as I've lived through a great deal of transitions, challenges, loss, and growth . . .

I greatly appreciate your sensitive and reflective teaching and coaching approaches.  Your passion for this beautiful art form is so evident, and I'm deeply grateful to be a part of this class . . .

It has taken me decades of releasing tons of physical tension to feel comfortable in my body, and similarly releasing my previously self-loathing inner critic to feel worthy and comfortable in my soul.  For years I would stand on a stage to sing, stiff as a board, feeling trapped in my body's tension, feeling so alone, and unable to see an audience as anything but cruel judges waiting to pounce.  

But in just these two weeks, being able to be up on a stage again with such a focus of presence and connection to another person, no longer feeling alone, and also sharing in such supportive community has moved me so deeply.  I didn't experience this depth of connection in my last improv class and haven't in my choir, even though I enjoy those groups.  We just don't really know each other and haven't spent time connecting even energetically in such ways.  So this class has really been powerful for me.  

I wanted to share this with you because I know how much it can matter when we humans know we're making a difference in someone's life.  We may never know the full extent of our legacies, but, just as in improv, it sure is affirming when others reciprocate, accept, and add to our life's offerings.

Thank you for sharing yourself and your work.  What you're doing and how you're doing it really matters.  I look forward to continuing.”

Members of a Bright Invention improv class doing an exercise called First Crossing.

Members of a Bright Invention improv class doing an exercise called First Crossing.

So . . . blushing, of course. And I share this at the risk of having readers think I am just tooting my own horn through someone else’s heartfelt letter (which the writer gave me permission to share.) But my desire is rather to explore just how meaningful and important the work of the creativity teacher is - everywhere and of all disciplines - in our hard and sometimes unforgiving world.

One of my many gripes about teaching acting in colleges and universities is their incessant and ignorant demand for “quantifiable outcomes”, “data points” and “metrics of achievement” for classes in creativity - like acting. There are none. These concepts work nicely next to test scores, grades and objectively measurable achievements. You either completed the lab assignment or you didn’t. You either know how to write literary analysis in French, or you don’t. You can either execute the quantum equations or you can’t. So at the ends of classes like these, the teacher can rack up scores and percentages and give the university the data it desires. But not in an acting class. Nope. Never.

Improv class group scene.

Improv class group scene.

How do you “score” the achievement of the shy young man who could barely be heard when speaking on the first day of class, and who got through a scene from Death of a Salesman from beginning to end with clarity and confidence at the end of class? What data point measures the lightbulb that goes off when the woman realizes, through games and exercises, that she might just be enough exactly as she is, and that all her effort to “be better” is just wasted energy getting in her own way? How am I supposed to record the measurable outcome of my student’s letter above in numbers and data which will objectively prove the transformational value of that experience?

Beyond the calcified and stale rooms of the academy, there are larger cultural issues at work here.

  1. We are living in the age of the “binary plague.” We have fetishized either/or outcomes: win/lose, straight/gay, male/female, liberal/conservative, with me/against me, yes/no. What a horrible cancer this is upon the vulnerable nuance, mystery and mutability of our human experience. The binary plagues forces false choices upon us, forces us into oppositional camps, leads us into conflict with each other. Nowhere is it more awful than in our current political discourse. But in the personal realm, we are seeing new movements growing which reject old and harmful binary patterns: the world of sexuality and sexual identity is undergoing a glorious revolution with the awarenesses that our experience of gender, attraction and eros are all on continuums. New initiatives in interpersonal coaching and workshops are highlighting emotional intelligence, sensitive listening and flexible strategies which honor the pliable and beautifully inconsistent species we are.

  2. We favor “logos” over “eros” in popular culture generally. From Wikipedia: “Logos became a technical term in Western philosophy beginning with Heraclitus (c.  535 – c.  475 BC), who used the term for a principle of order and knowledge. Logos is the logic behind an argument. Logos tries to persuade an audience using logical arguments and supportive evidence.” I use "eros” in a Jungian sense: “Jung considers logos to be a masculine principle, while eros is a feminine principle. According to Jung, ‘woman's psychology is founded on the principle of Eros, the great binder and loosener, whereas from ancient times the ruling principle ascribed to man is Logos. The concept of Eros could be expressed in modern terms as psychic relatedness, and that of Logos as objective interest’” (Wikipedia). So my critique is in some sense a critique of patriarchy, which relies on logos - legalistic, argumentative reasoning - to at best bring enlightenment, and at worst dominate and oppress. Eros is not concerned with winning and losing. Instead it meditates on and explores relatedness, connections, patterns, feelings and sensations. Logos loves data. Eros loves intuition. And it’s not either/or - see binary plague above. Our task is to apply these two powerful approaches to experience in appropriate ways. But all too often, eros is marginalized and logos celebrated in the data-driven, consumer frenzied, capitalist culture we live in. Logos is good for selling things, eros is good for connecting people.

Me and Joshua Boden performing our show The Deep End in Staunton, Virginia.

Me and Joshua Boden performing our show The Deep End in Staunton, Virginia.

Improv is an antidote for many cultural irritants, including these ones. Endless conflict is the kiss of death for improv, which relentlessly drives towards agreement, cooperation and collaboration. So it rejects the binary plague right at the outset. It’s never you or me - it’s always us, building the story together. Which places us at the center of eros - it’s all about relationships, listening, connecting, sharing. When we sink into a learning experience based on those attributes, personal transformation is possible - like the one my student describes in the letter.

Bright Invention uses improvisation to empower individuals and organizations to unlock their potential (that’s actually our official mission statement.) My student’s letter is a heartfelt example of one way we are walking the walk. In my eleven years of improvising and twenty-plus years of teaching acting, I have witnessed such transformation over and over. It’s why I keep doing this - in spite of the uncertainty and cultural resistance. And it’s not because I’m some altruistic guru. I keep doing it because I need it. I am replenished, buoyed, transformed every time I enter the classroom, rehearsal space, performance.

And occasionally, I get inspiring letters like this one.

Creative Corporate Training free Demo!

Friday April 12th, 3:30 pm

Free demonstration

Creative Corporate Training

Benjamin Lloyd watches Ensemble members Josh Kirwin and Kiersten Adams perform a scenario for The Union League Philadelphia.

Benjamin Lloyd watches Ensemble members Josh Kirwin and Kiersten Adams perform a scenario for The Union League Philadelphia.

Bright Invention's Creative Corporate Training program employs an innovative, scenario-based approach to team-building, customer service and workplace culture enhancement. We use structured improvisations we design specifically for each client, which embody issues or themes the client wants their team to examine. 

Unlike other improv-based training programs, we do not make you role play!We do the acting - you do the problem solving.

Friday April 12th 

Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia
Mars Drinks Conference Center, Engagement Room, 
200 S. Broad St, Suite 700, Philadelphia, PA 19102

  • Social time 3:30 - 4:00 PM

  • Demo 4:00 - 4:45 PM

  • Free - refreshments served

  • Bring friends!

Please RSVP

Ensemble members Kiersten Adams and Eric Walker observe CCT facilitator Leah Holleran at a workshop for the West Philly Skills Initiative.

Ensemble members Kiersten Adams and Eric Walker observe CCT facilitator Leah Holleran at a workshop for the West Philly Skills Initiative.



Our mailing address is: 
Bright InventionPO Box 8870Elkins Park, PA  19027


Add us to your address book




2019 March letter from Ben - The Commedia Connection.

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With this post I launch “Letters from Ben”, the replacement for the monthly newsletter we used to generate. At the beginning of each month I will post a rumination of sorts about the work Bright Invention is doing some area. My goal is to create a personal connection to you through writing. I hope you like it. Feel free to comment and ask questions!

***
As some of you know, Bright Invention is an extension of a strange collision of concerns of mine. On the one hand, a concern for the extraordinary genius of the actor; how we are descended from a lineage of celebrities, vagabonds, eccentrics and seers beginning with tribal shamen, who were healers as well as performers. On the other hand, an interest in the economic pressures on the modern American performing artist; how commercial forces dehumanize this most human of all artists, turning us into things which are bought and sold, and capitalizing on our ambition and vulnerability for profit.

Antonio Fava

Antonio Fava

Recently, in preparing our show we are calling Improvasushi!, I began to understand that what I am interested in doing is a 21st century version of the Renaissance Italian theater known as commedia dell’arte. And the more I explored this connection, the more excited I became. I studied commedia for two extraordinary weeks in 2006 with the acknowledged master of the form, Antonio Fava. I was entranced, not only by Fava’s energetic and elaborate teaching style, but by the boldness and creativity of commedia itself. You can read about this experience more fully in my personal blog here. For Fava, commedia the performance style cannot be understood without understanding commedia the economic entity. “Commedia dell arte means ‘professional theatre!’” Fava would bellow. And he explained that these companies (and they called themselves companies) were the first western example of professional actors.

A commedia company arrives

A commedia company arrives

I left that experience regarding the commedia actor as heroic: perfecting the performance of stock characters within unscripted plots - the shows were enormous structured improvisations - and at the same time, being occasionally persecuted by prelates and nobility, suspicious of these actors with bawdy senses of humor, and smarting from the satire they put on display. The shows, Fava explained, were not only un-scripted, they were calibrated and adapted to the specific audiences they were being performed for. They were breathtakingly immediate and personal to the people watching on that day (always in the day of course - no electricity.) I found myself moved and inspired.

Our ensemble Bright Invention practices and performs long form improvisation. What’s that, you ask? Well, good luck finding a succinct definition, and if you do please let me know. Here’s a short Medium article about long form improv which also has some useful links. And here’s my little snapshot:

  • Short form improv is what most people think of when you say “improv”: short, absurd and silly scenes and sketches based on audience suggestions.

  • If short form uses clever ideas to generate laughs, long form explores deep relationships to reveal shared humanity. Long form is based in realism, short form is not.

  • Long form is often funny, but it doesn’t have to be. Once improvisation is freed from the requirement to be funny, entire galaxies of experience open up.

  • Long form is “long” because the relationships between characters developed in shows continue through the entire show. This is seldom the case in short form.

  • Short form is often a means to an end, the end being scripted sketch comedy based on improv. Long form is the end itself.

But our ensemble is also dedicated to “expanding the genre” and it is in this vein that we will begin to merge our work with some of the traditions and approaches of the commedia companies. We will begin to include rehearsed performance in our improvised long form shows. As with the commedia companies our shows will begin and end with rehearsed music and song. And we will soon begin to develop lazzi - rehearsed, solo set pieces sometimes comic, sometimes not, performed by individual members of the ensemble, and inserted into our shows. What these little solos are, and how they appear in our shows remains to be seen. But what I am sure of is that they will showcase the remarkable range of talent in our ensemble, from music and singing, to spoken word poetry, to dance and circus performance, to clown and physical comedy.

Some of us, exhausted, after the IMPROVATHON!

Some of us, exhausted, after the IMPROVATHON!

What we won’t borrow from commedia are the masks and precisely organized performances of stock characters. But we do strive to have the same sense of immediate and personal audience connection that commedia companies thrived on. And, as with these extraordinary Renaissance ensembles, we are determined to explore new paradigms to support the economic needs of the modern American actor through our corporate training work.

Stay tuned!

Announcing . . . IMPROVASUSHI!

It's a match made in heaven:

Improvasushi!

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What? Longform improv and sushi!
When? First Saturdays at 8 pm beginning Saturday March 2nd!
Where? 

Madame Saito's Tokio Headhouse Sushi
122 Lombard St
Philadelphia, PA 19147

Madame Saito’s on Lombard Street in Society Hill, off of Headhouse Square . . .

Madame Saito’s on Lombard Street in Society Hill, off of Headhouse Square . . .

Sushi and improv . . . they go together like . . . well, they just go together! Especially now as Bright Invention launches our downtown shows upstairs in the Tokio Ballroom at Mademe Saito's!

Come at 7 for drinks and sushi downstairs, then come up to the ballroom for our special brand of intimate, immersive improvisation!

Easy to remember dates: first Saturdays! Easy to locate venue: just off of Headhouse Square in Society Hill, Philadelphia!

Some of the Bright Invention ensemble

Some of the Bright Invention ensemble

Sushi + improv = joy!

  • World class Japanese cusine

  • Full bar

  • Our hour-long show begins at 8 pm

  • Dinner and a show - what's not to love?

Click the button below to reserve show tickets. Restaurant reservations please call: (215) 815-8266

Show tickets click here!


IMPROVATHON! It's a wrap!

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9 improvisers. 6 hours of #improv. 6 special guests. Many cookies/donuts/pringles. And . . . we shattered our goal! $1,025 raised for The William Way LGBT Community Center! Thank you to Arch Street Meetinghouse for being such generous hosts, lots of audience dropping in throughout the day, and our amazing Inventors! Improvathon 2019 has come to an end with great success!

Here’s a slide show! Click on the image to go to the next one!




IMPROVATHON Update!

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The William Way LGBT Center located on Spruce Street, Philadelphia.

The William Way LGBT Center located on Spruce Street, Philadelphia.

For Philly Theater Week 2019 we are presenting THE IMPROVATHON! to raise money for the William Way LGBT Community Center. On Saturday February 9th at Arch Street Quaker Meeting House, we will begin improvising at 10 am and won’t stop until we have raised $500 for William Way! 

Saturday, February 9th, 10 am - ???

Arch Street Meetinghouse, 320 Arch Street, Philadelphia, PA. 19106

FREE - reserve a seat by clicking here

Here is our schedule of Special Guests!

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10 am - 11 am. Tara Demmy! Tara Demmy is a comedian, theatre artist, and teacher straddling both Philly and DC. She trained at the Upright Citizens Brigade NYC, Philly Improv Theater, and completed her Lecoq training at Helikos: International School of Theater Creation in Italy. She is a proud company member of Tribe of Fools where she performed in Fishtown – A Hipster Noir, Antihero, Zombies with Guns, and Shut Your Wormhole. She is a writer and performer with ManiPedi Sketch Comedy. Tara received her masters from
Villanova University and is currently pursing her PhD in Theatre and Performance Studies at University of Maryland. tarademmy.com

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11 am - 12 noon. Michelle Pauls! Michelle Pauls is a theatre artist, artist educator and mom. She has worked for many years in the Philadelphia area doing theatre, film work, cabaret singing and improv! In fact, she was one of the founding members of Bright Invention. She also teaches theatre and the like in the college setting. www.michellepauls.com 






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12 noon - 1 pm. Ed Miller! Ed Miller is an actor, director, and writer from the Philadelphia area. He has worked with the Arden Theatre, Theatre Exile, Swim Pony, The IRC, and Secret Room Theatre. Ed spent 3 years living and teaching in South Korea where he also made time to act, direct, and serve on the board of Seoul Players. He was a founding member of SCI: Seoul City Improv and graced the TV screens for young "English-hungry" Koreans on such programs as "Story Time", "T-Girl!", and "Cooking with Red Hood”. Ed is a current proud member of Tongue and Groove Spontaneous Theatre.

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1 pm - 2 pm. Brian Anthony Wilson! Brian has been on numerous Philly stages, feature films like The Postman, Creed and Limitless; and TV shows The Wire, Hack and Law and Order.








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2 pm - 3 pm. Sharon Geller! Sharon Geller is a comedic actress who has appeared on Saturday Night Live 4 times. In addition to performing in the national touring company of the off-Broadway show “Old Jews Telling Jokes,” Sharon does radio and TV commercials and teaches improv at the Walnut Street Theatre. She trained with Chicago City Limits. www.sharongeller.com. 


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3 pm - 4 pm. Joy Wier! Joy Suzanne Weir has been an improviser for the last seven years. She is a company member of Tongue & Groove Spontaneous Theatre. Some of her favorite scripted roles include Leonardo's Wife in Philadelphia Artists Collective's performance of Blood Wedding and Blackberry in Simpatico Theatre Project's Watership Down. She has also been a teaching artist for various companies including Bright Invention's sister company, White Pines Productions. She is very excited, and a little scared, to be part of the Improvathon. Let's get weird.

 

Each hour will feature:

  • fun with our special guest!

  • a spoof of a popular film or TV genre!

  • Bright Invention’s long form The Sun and its Planets!

The Arch Street Meetinghouse, 320 Arch Street Philadelphia. Site of THE IMPROVATHON!

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Free parking - enter on 4th street between Arch and Market!

Complimentary light refreshments served.

Wheelchair accessible.

Stop by any time; see some, leave, and return; BRING FRIENDS!

Donations for William Way accepted in person with cash, check or online through Facebook Donate button located here: donate online.

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The Improvathon is a part of Philly Theater Week! Please check out all the other amazing shows being presented - click here!

Bright Invention will be part of another great event the very next day! Rehearsing Improv: It’s not an Oxymoron! Co- presented with Tongue & Groove Spontaneous Theatre, this is a fun and free “peek behind the scene” to see how improvisers create shows! Click here for tickets!

Ability in Action

Participants in Acting Out!

Participants in Acting Out!

Ability In Action is a comprehensive, immersive and experiential program for youth and young adults living with a disability. Ability In Action utilizes performance creativity and embodied activities to enhance social skills, verbal and physical expression, communication and self determination. Here’s what Bright Invention is up to this winter/spring in Ability in Action:

Acting Out! is open to all youth and young adults with ASD, Aspergers, or any Physical or Developmental Disability. This class introduces basics of acting and collaboration in a safe and structured environment. Students will engage in an opening ritual at the beginning of each class and will gradually be introduced to games and activities over the course of the class semester. The final class will feature a share for family and friends based on the comfort level of students. This class is open to youth between 10 and 20 years old (but we’re flexible!) and is currently held at the Cheltenham Center for the Arts. Class begins February 24 - click here!

Stepping Out! Let us come to you and co-create fun and meaningful workshops and classes for your amazing community! Participants engage in Storytelling, Drama, Movement and Improvisation activities which explore specific themes curated to each group we work with. One workshop may explore the challenges in day to day workplace interactions while other workshops may help participants talk about relationships. Each Ability in Action experience addresses the personalized goals and needs of the participants. If you are interested in bringing Ability In Action to your organization or community. Please reach out today!

Participants in a Stepping Out! class this past summer at Common Space.

Participants in a Stepping Out! class this past summer at Common Space.

This winter we are offering Real Life Drama as part of Stepping Out! In this class we will create scenes about Real Life - the ups and downs, the highs and lows, the sweet and sour! Using a fun technique called "structured improvisation" we will play games, do some exercises and act in scenes we invent together. At the end of the class we might even do a show for our friends and families! This class is held in Ardmore at Common Space. Class begins February 23rd - click here!

Ability In Action builds a safe and supportive (and fun!) social environment which encourages risk-taking, deeper relationships and personal growth through embodied techniques and ensemble building. We love to work on special projects with blended groups. Examples of our special projects include developing an original holiday musical based on the arrangements of Fred Waring, an original production for the gala fundraising event supporting the Philly Friendship Circle, and an original play written and performed by one of our Acting Out! graduates. Got an idea? We want to hear it!

Comings and Goings . . .

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Bon Voyage, Dani Bryant

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In the summer of 2017, former education director Katherine Perry announced she was moving on, and so we opened a search to replace her. When Katherine and Ben interviewed Dani Bryant they knew they had found someone special. Moving from Chicago to Philly, Dani dropped into Bright Invention (then, White Pines) and began overseeing all our education programs, teaching classes, and leading our summer camp. "Dani was my right-hand," says Executive Director Benjamin Lloyd. "She was at the center of every major decision we made. Her insight, creativity, humor and leadership will be sorely missed."

"Working with White Pines (& Bright Invention) was a gift, says Dani.  "I found in Ben a true working parter and confidante. Bright Invention and Ben always 100% supported my interests and graduate schedule and allowed me to bring my creative ideas for the organization to the table. I will take with me the playful memories and beautiful artistic work of our campers, studio class students and storytellers. Thank you for giving me a creative home base! Onwards!"

Dani lives now in New York City with her partner Mike Durkin, as she completes her graduate studies in Drama Therapy. Soon, she will begin her practice there, but we can't let go of her completely! She will stay on as "Drama Therapy Consultant" at Bright Invention, advising Ben on the Ability in Action program, curriculum design, and teaching techniques.

New Inventors! 

After a month-long audition process we welcome three new extraordinary citizen artists to our ensemble! 

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Carlo Campbell is a Philadelphia native. He is a founding member and Artistic Director of Theatre In The X as well as a member of SAG-AFTRA, he has been in a number films and commercials. He has also worked with theatre companies all throughout the Delaware Valley including Go Kash On Stage, Ego Po, Simpatico, Pennsylvania Shakespeare, Delaware Shakespeare, First World Theatre, and Curio Theatre.  He has worked with children and young adults of all ages, from kindergarten to 12th grade as a teaching artist and director. Also a Poet an MC (AFLOE), Carlo has published a book of poetry entitled Afloematic.

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Kaitlin Chin is an independent performer as well as the co-owner of the touring aerial show Draiku and the director of the immersive performance company The Night Circus, born out of the You Are So Lucky production company. She has been studying and performing dance since the age of three. She began training at the West Side Performing Arts Academy in Middleton, WI, and later trained with Monona Academy of Dance under JoJean Retrum and briefly danced with the Madison and Monona Ballets in shows such as “Sleeping Beauty”, “The Nutcracker”, and “Winter Fantasy”. Kaitlin appeared in Shakespeare in the Summer’s production of Twelfth Night last summer as Viola, which was co-produced by Bright Invention.


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Born in Nashville, TN, raised in Lancaster, PA, and currently living in Philadelphia, Josh Kirwin is farm-to-table. Aside from his expansive work as a singer/songwriter/bassist in the studio and on the road, he is known for playing many broody boy roles, like Melchior in Spring Awakening, Biff Loman in Death of a Salesman. Philly work includes producing a short run of The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui underneath the South Street Head House, and a string of bizarre staged episodes of the animation show Bob's Burgers inside Tattooed Mom's. He is a founding member of Liberty City Radio Theatre, which performs in various locations along South Street.

Look for these three  in Bright Invention shows beginning in February, like . . . 

THE IMPROVATHON!

Saturday February 9th #phillytheatreweek

The IMPROVATHON returns!

Bright Invention presents the return of . . . 

 

The Improvathon!

The Bright Invention Ensemble

The Bright Invention Ensemble

Blanka Zizka spanking Benjamin Lloyd onstage at IMPROVATHON 2014

Blanka Zizka spanking Benjamin Lloyd onstage at IMPROVATHON 2014

In December of 2014 the improv group Bright Invention accomplished the unthinkable: they improvised for 24 hours straight in Philly’s first Improvathon! At that historic event, they were joined onstage by Philly arts and culture luminaries such as Brian Anthony Wilson (Creed, The Wire), Sharon Geller (Saturday Night Live), and Blanka Zizka, Artistic director for the Wilma Theatre who spanked Bright invention Artistic Director Benjamin Lloyd on stage during an improv! 

Now for Philly Theater Week 2019 they will bring the Improvathon back, this time to raise money for the William Way LGBT Community Center. That’s right on Saturday February 9that Arch Street Quaker Meeting House, they will begin improvising and won’t stop until they have raised $500 for William Way! 

 

But wait – there’s more!

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In order for them stop improvising – Gritty must show up! That’s right! Achieving their philanthropic goals is not enough! Philly’s new mascot sensation must appear at this feat of creative endurance in order to save them from improvising themselves into an early grave! 

What will happen on February 9th? Will Bright Invention raise enough money for Philly’s LGBT champions? Will the great orange-bearded monster appear? Will members of the ensemble expire from exhaustion, giggle fits and hallucinations? What special guests will appear on stage to support them?

The William Way LGBT Community Center, Philadelphia.

The William Way LGBT Community Center, Philadelphia.

Click here for tickets!

Don’t miss this epic improv event! 

  • Date and time:

  • Saturday February 9th, 10 am - ?

  • Location

  • Arch Street Meeting House, 320 Arch St. Philadelphia, PA 19106

Arch Street Quaker Meeting House, 4th & Arch Streets, Philadelphia: the location of the IMPROVATHON 2019!

Arch Street Quaker Meeting House, 4th & Arch Streets, Philadelphia: the location of the IMPROVATHON 2019!

Tickets are free – donations accepted for The William Way LGBT Community Center

Contact: 

Benjamin Lloyd

877-674-8338

ben@brightinvention.org

www.brightinvention.org

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Help us transform lives!


We need your help . . .

It's that time of year when we all take stock of the people and organizations that matter. We hope that our scrappy little nonprofit will make the cut with you. Here's a little movie we made to help make our case:

Acting Out does the Time Warp! A movie of Ability in Action, our creativity program for people with disabilties.

It's an exciting time for Bright Invention!

  • new name!

  • new streamlined mission!

  • same innovative vision!

Bright Invention uses improvisation to empower individuals and organizations to unlock their potential. We are committed to entrepreneurial self-sufficiency, proving our value by solving problems, transforming lives, and delighting audiences.

Donate Now


Bright Invention is:


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The Improvisation Ensemble

The creative center of the organization, practicing improvisation, performing, teaching and staffing all our programs. 




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Creative Corporate Training

Scenario-based workshops based on structured improvisation, custom made for each client, supporting excellent teamwork, customer service, communication and leadership. 

Learn More



Ability In Action

Dynamic engagement with people with disabilities, using creative dramatics and structured improv to build emotional intelligence, confidence and creative problem solving.




Donate Now






Free Drinks & Demo event Monday December 10th!

Monday December 10, 3:00 pm

Drinks & Demo

Creative Corporate Training

CCT staff Kiersten Adams, Eric Walker and facilitator Leah Holleran lead a workshop for the Drexel School of Medicine cohort, West Philadelphia Skills Initiative

CCT staff Kiersten Adams, Eric Walker and facilitator Leah Holleran lead a workshop for the Drexel School of Medicine cohort, West Philadelphia Skills Initiative


Bright Invention's Creative Corporate Training program uses innovative "scenario-based" training, employing structured improvisations, games and exercises to support extraordinary communication, customer service and teamwork!

Come to this free event and see us do our thing in person! Bring a friend whose awesome organization thrives on outstanding person-to-person interaction.

Monday December 10th 

Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia
Mars Drinks Conference Center, Engagement Room, 
200 S. Broad St, Suite 700, Philadelphia, PA 19102

  • Social time 3:00 - 3:30 PM

  • Demo 3:30 - 4:15 PM

  • Bring friends!

Please RSVP

Check out this short movie of our team playing "Yes, and . . . " with a client! 


CCT free Drinks & Demo event Monday October 22nd!

Program director Benjamin Lloyd at GlaxoSmithKline workshop in North Carolina.

Program director Benjamin Lloyd at GlaxoSmithKline workshop in North Carolina.

Ensemble members Bob Stineman and Eric Walker in a workshop for The West Philly Skills Initiative.

Ensemble members Bob Stineman and Eric Walker in a workshop for The West Philly Skills Initiative.

Bright Invention's Creative Corporate Training program uses innovative "scenario-based" training, employing structured improvisations, games and exercises to support extraordinary communication, customer service and teamwork!

Come to this free event and see us do our thing in person! Bring a friend whose awesome organization thrives on outstanding person-to-person interaction.

Program Director Benjamin Lloyd leads a workshop for GlaxoSmithKline in Philadelphia.

Program Director Benjamin Lloyd leads a workshop for GlaxoSmithKline in Philadelphia.

Monday October 22nd.  

Chamber of Commerce for Greater Philadelphia -
Mars Drinks Conference Center, Engagement Room, 
200 S. Broad St, Suite 700, Philadelphia, PA 19102

  • Social time 2:30 - 3 pm

  • Demo 3 - 3:45 pm

  • Bring friends!

Welcome to the new White Pines Productions

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And it’s called . . . well you can see what it’s called!

After a careful strategic review, we decided to close our little studio in Elkins Park and become a performing arts organization without a brick and mortar home. This gives us the ability to be an even more nimble and adaptable company, bringing improvisation to multiple audiences.

We do three things:

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perform and teach improvisation,



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Work and play creatively with people with disabilities.

The fall of 2018 is full of fun events and activities!

  • improvisation shows in Ardmore, Huntingdon Valley, and soon - Center City!

  • Creative Corporate Training workshops for the West Philadelphia Skills Initiative!

  • another great year of Acting Out! for youth with disabilities!

  • classes in improv at The Cheltenham Center for the Arts!

  • site-specific living Clue game at Glen Foerd on the Delaware!

So explore our new site, and learn more about the ways you can remain a part of Bright Invention!

The ensemble performing recently at Smoke & Mirrors theater, Huntingdon Valley, PA.

The ensemble performing recently at Smoke & Mirrors theater, Huntingdon Valley, PA.