A 501(c)(3) Non-Profit Organization | info@improvutopia.com



September 24 - 27, 2021 (Fri-Mon)



Calvin Crest - Oakhurst, CA

Yosemite is a 3 night retreat for adults 21 and over will happen the weekend of September 27th - September 30, 2019 . It takes place at Camp Calvin Crest, near Yosemite National Park, this camp is tucked away near the Sierra Nevada’s and near the original national park where you’ll see America’s most beautiful landmarks like El Capitan, Half Dome and The Yosemite Valley. In addition to our East and West Camp, Yosemite brings you an all new curriculum. You will learn a form and be trained by one teacher the entire weekend! This three-night camping experience includes improv workshops from top instructors, camp activities like archery, pool swimming, a trip to half-dome and more! Your accommodations are great too with cabin camping with showers and bathrooms, all your meals and much more. Camp is a relaxed environment to learn while experiencing camaraderie, community and nature.

Cancelled for 2020.

Prices Include: Camp is all inclusive, Yosemite trip, Co-ed cabin-camping (Single-sex cabins upon request), 8 meals, workshops and all camp activities are included in your tuition.

  • $525 Registration - Regular Accomodations
  • $540 Payment Plan Available - 2 Pay Plan
    • (Single Occupancy - $250)
    • (Double Occupancy - $200)
      • Add this feature and get your own hotel style room, linens and amenities, private bathroom/Shower. 
  • Yosemite Trip included in camp tuition.
  • If you choose to stay back from Yosemite we will have workshops, camp activities and more for you to do as included in your tuition

There is a one time non-refundable 2.3% + $0.30 fee added to each transaction.


Tuition is All-Inclusive! You get:

  • Workshops: 11 hours of workshops from master improv teachers! Performances: Improv jams and shows with your cabinmates!
  • Camp Activities: Yosemite trip, swimming pool, archery and so much more!
  • Lodging: Shared cabins with private bathrooms, showers and electricity.
  • Food: All meals are included and prepared by professional kitchen staff. Special dietary and allergy-friendly meals are available, too!
  • Surprise Workshops!
  • Community: Meet improvisors from all over the world... community and camaraderie in nature!


with Craig Cackowski



Challenging but rewarding, complex yet freeing, JTS Brown is renowned as one of the most unique improv forms ever created. Originated in the late ‘90s in Chicago by a 14-person ensemble formed by Jason Sudeikis and Ike Barinholtz, JTS Brown demands complete concentration and absolute support from its players. Following dream logic and utilizing physical transformations, a large ensemble creates an interesting packaging for strong scene work. Come learn from original JTS Brown director Craig Cackowski and put your own spin on this classic form!

About Craig

Craig Cackowski is an improvisor and teacher based in Los Angeles. He has been involved with the iO and iO West theaters since 1992, and is the three-time winner of the Del Close Award as Teacher of the Year at iO West. He has played numerous festivals, including the Chicago Improv Festival and the Del Close Marathon, with his long-running three-man troupe Dasariski (with Bob Dassie and Rich Talarico). Around LA, he may be seen in such other shows as Quartet, The Armando Show and The Better Half (with Raising Hope’s Lucas Neff).

with Karen Graci



In these sessions we will create a form completely unique to the performers in it, a form that will play to the strengths of the players but also challenge them to make exceptional character, physicality, game, theme and dialogue choices. Building this form collaboratively will also give players the skills and inspiration necessary to create more forms with their teams back home. Let’s create something new and lasting together!

About Karen

Karen Graci is a proud native of Buffalo, NY, Karen performed for Chicago’s The Second City for more than three years. While touring the US and abroad with The Second City National Touring Company, Karen was grateful to perform in The Second City’s first-ever USO Tour, entertaining American troops in Kuwait, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia. She was also a resident cast member in The Best of Second City at The Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas for over a year.

with Brian James O’Connell

BOC New Headshot - Pastel Close Up


The Deconstruction was created by The Family and under the direction of Del Close himself. The Deconstruction is the single most important long form ever created as it contains every single possible permutation of scene approach and thematic development.  An understanding of The Deconstruction is essential for the artistic, intellectual and technical development of an improviser. Quite simply, an improviser’s understanding of the “work” will never be the same after being exposed to “Decon”; whether you perform short form, improvised Shakespeare or are merely a writer looking to improve your understanding of character and structure, learning these skills will radically improve your understanding of improvisation and raise your level of play.

If the Harold is algebra, The Deconstruction is calculus.   Once you learn calculus, everything else seems like simple math.

About Brian

Brian James O’Connell is a working actor, writer, director in Los Angeles and a graduate of the prestigious North Carolina School of the Arts (David Gordon Green, Danny McBride, Jody Hill, Dane DeHaan and Jeff Nichols).  A regular performer and teacher at the iOWest Theater in Los Angeles, Brian also currently teaches as part of the Core Faculty at The Miles Stroth Workshop.

His comedy troupe, Dr. God recently completed their first feature film project BLOODSUCKING BASTARDS (starring Fran Kranz, Pedro Pascal). which O’Connell directed (his third feature as a director) as well as co-writing the script. You can now find it on demand and online.

Close Quarters
with Carla Cackowski



Close Quarters" is a long form that was born in the nineties by an improv group out of Chicago. The original production ran for four months at The Second City ETC and was directed by Noah Gregoropoulos. The entire piece takes place in one main location (ex. Hospital), with each subsequent scene exploring adjacent areas in that space (i.e. emergency room, ladies restroom, nurses station, janitor's closet, morgue, etc.). Each scene in the adjacent space takes place at the same time, so there are opportunities to see the same sound effects, character walk-ons, and other elements play out with a new meaning or importance in each scene. Carla's duo "Orange Tuxedo" performs a modified version of this form in festivals across the country and she recently directed a Close Quarters format with the Festival Ensemble in 2018's Westside Comedy Fest. She will be working with the group based on her own experiences doing the form, as well as adding in other unique elements that the ensemble creates together in rehearsal.

About Carla

Carla Cackowski is an improviser, writer, podcaster, and nap-lover. She toured all over Europe, Alaska, and the Caribbean performing comedy with The Second City. She's a member of SAG-AFTRA and has done voiceover work on shows for ABC Family, TBS, and Disney. She wrote and performed five solo shows that were produced in Los Angeles and her comedic monologues were published in anthologies by APPLAUSE BOOKS. Carla hosts "Improv Yak", a shop-talk podcast about improv comedy. When they're not touring their two person improv show "Orange Tuxedo", she and her husband Craig Cackowski co-host a podcast called "Craig's List".  Most recently, Carla has written for sketch shows on PBS Kids and Dreamworks TV. She taught improvisation and directed sketch shows at The Second City Hollywood for eight years before relocating to the Pacific Northwest to accept the position of Co-Artistic Director at Curious Comedy Theater for a year. She’s currently the Training Center Director at Mi’s Westside Comedy Theater in Santa Monica, California.

Genre Form
with Nick Armstrong



Only 10 lucky campers will be able to take this Genre Intensive with Nick. Study and learn Nick's philosophy on Genreprov. Learn form, and how to play genre. You'll be learning how to play the form all leading up to a show at the end of the weekend. Nick's philosophy follows character play in genre more then the narrative itself. You'll be able to learn how to develop and carry on character through the entire show. So you get to kill two birds with one stone..Character and genre!

About Nick

Nick is an Actor, Improvisor and Writer living in Los Angeles, CA. On TV Nick has been on the Emmy-Award winning shows The Office and Grey's Anatomy. He has also made appearances on Jimmy Kimmel Live, New Girl, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Key and Peele, Stan Against Evil and Parks and Recreation.

Nick has trained at The Groundlings and iO West. He is an alum of The Sunday Company at the Groundlings and currently performs at M.I.'s Westside Comedy Theater on LA's Critically Acclaimed Harold Team King Ten and County Line. Nick is currently the Artistic Director of Mi's Westside Comedy Theater and teaches and performs there. He has also taught improv at iO West and The Groundings Theater and has done workshops all over the world.

Nick is also the Camp Director and Founder of Camp Improv Utopia a 501(c) (3) Non Profit improv retreat for grown ups. He is also one of the founding members of the The Improv Network.

Camp is one of the best improv experiences that I could have had. To be in a place where everyone loves improv as much as you do is such a rush. The teachers are supportive and are invested in your learning. The view is awe striking and I always wanted seconds at meal times. You truly do make amazing friends and memories there.

Christina L - Los Angeles, CA