If you've been feeling a bit stir-crazy or blue of late, you're certainly not alone.
As the province has declared a state of emergency, stores, bars and restaurants across the province began to temporarily close down, or move to reduced business hours or delivery models, as provincial and federal health authorities urge people to stay home and maintain social distancing in an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19.
Now, the City of Vancouver has declared a state of emergency, and Mayor Kennedy Stewart encourages residents to immediately limit their time in public places.
In the midst of this dark time, however, a group of comedians aim to enhance social fun – even from afar.
The Blind Tiger Comedy School announced a new way for comedy-lovers to keep having as much fun as possible while still practicing safe social distancing: the Blind Tiger Digital Comedy School
The digital school offers courses that feature oodles of creation, sketch, and some "internet-tailored improv." In addition, organizers note that they will also offer, "brand new courses that are focused on — if not directly inspired by — the internet."
Specific courses include:
- A comic-making course from Aaron Read taught through Zoom;
- a full suite of sketch comedy classes designed for the internet with Devin Mackenzie and Tom Hill;
- Taz VanRassel teaching you how to improvise with just your voice;
- Ryan Beil hosting a weekly video podcast with the Blind Tiger Comedy founders breaking down comedy topics of all sorts.
- Online shows and parties every Friday;
Classes can be attended via computer or phone, and just require a WiFi connection (or a whole lot of data).
It started Wednesday with Beta Week, a week of almost exclusively free mini-classes, with instructors teasing the topics and approaches they will bring to their full curriculums.
On Friday, March 20, faculty member Amy Shostak will host the Digital Comedy School Town Hall.
"We are hoping at least 100 folks will join us on Zoom to riff, raise a glass, celebrate what comedy means to us, try some games and have some fun," the Blind Tiger Comedy School notes in a release.
The school also says it will offer diversity and financial need Scholarships, and that it, "will be making more room than usual for folks in financial need – as many as we possibly can."
Now in its seventh year, Blind Tiger Comedy is led by internationally-recognized groups The Sunday Service and Hip.Bang!
All classes are open for registration. Find out more information here.
- With files from the Vancouver Courier and Richmond News.