Our Story

Mission Statement

Vancouver TheatreSports® League is a unique professional theatre organization dedicated to the growth and exploration of exceptional improv-based work for the purpose of challenging and inspiring the community.

 


 

Who We Are & What We Do

Founded in 1980 Vancouver TheatreSports™ League is Vancouver’s #1 improv comedy company and a well-respected international leader in the art form – recognized for producing some of the most daring and innovative improv comedy anywhere with a style that is a highly theatrical fusion of the dramatic elements of comedy and tragedy coupled with the enthusiasm and edge-of-your-seat excitement of professional sport. Boasting six International Improv Comedy Awards and starring in several television specials, Vancouver TheatreSports™ League first opened its doors at the Back Alley Theatre, where it consistently drew cult-like, capacity crowds. VTSL continues to wow audiences at its own theatre,The Improv Centre on Granville Island, entertaining more than 60,000 people per year through 11 shows a week, 52 weeks a year .Over the years, the company has grown and now operates its own professional theatre school, The Improv Comedy Institute (ICI) – offering entry-level through professional-level improv classes. It has also expanded its product categories by adding Improv for Business and Improv for Events. Improv for Business, VTSL’s corporate training division, offers training sessions designed to enhance teamwork, communication, creativity and innovation in the workplace. Improv for Events, VTSL’s events division, presents more than 150 corporate events yearly – producing custom-tailored shows for corporations, associations and not-for-profit organizations.

Never seen an improv comedy show? Check out this article on how to maximize the experience.

 

VTSL’s improv tournament at Expo ’86 provided the impetus for the present worldwide interest in TheatreSports™. The improv techniques pioneered by Vancouver TheatreSports™ League are now used for everything from corporate training to TV parodies. The names of VTSL players and alumni are a veritable ‘Who’s Who’ of the North American entertainment and improv scenes. Award-winning performers, TV celebrities, and international personalities have filled out the ranks of VTSL’s fast-thinking players including: Ryan Stiles and Colin Mochrie (Whose Line Is It Anyway), Ellie Harvie (The New Addams Family), Dean Haglund (The X-Files, The Lone Gunmen), and Nancy Robertson (Hiccups, Corner Gas). From 2000-2015, VTSL produced the annual Jessie Awards – the ‘Oscars’ for Vancouver’s theatre community.

Vancouver TheatreSports League hosts hilarious improvisational shows that are similar to what you see on "Whose Line Is It Anyway." It has a theatre, bar, and patio - you can bring your drinks into the theatre. You can purchase tickets in advance or at the box office. I recommend taking your friends and family out to VTSL for a nice night of laughter :) Sign up on their site to get a complimentary ticket to a show on your birthday!

Anna Haus, Google Review

One of the only places in Vancouver that supports a year round schedule of improv shows and classes. If you are a fan of improv comedy this is the spot.

Vanessa Tam, Writer

Alumni

There are many well known performers that have passed through the ranks of Vancouver TheatreSports® League over the years.

Aberle, Stephen Agosti, Kristina Anderson, Peter Antifave, Scott Applegath, Brent Baker, Bob Ballard, Florence E. Barrett, Eileen Beley, Lisa Ann Bentz, Tammy Berlin, Judith Berner, Toby Black, Mike Blake, Seamus Bloomfield, Jessie Boothby, Ian Borycki, Martin Bracht, Mary Brazeau, Jay Brewer-White, Elaine Brummer, Russ Bryden, Jason Burke, Amanda Burton, Beth Bygrave, Matt Cameron, Dave Campbell, Reid Campbell, Scott Ceresney, Benita Chai, Daniel Chalk, Gary Chula, Babz Cochrane, Andrew Cole, Shelley Cole, Ted Cook, Alistair Cook, Brian Corbeil, Luc Corrin, Penelope Crawford, Rod Daum, Jill Davidson, Janet Davies, JT Davis, Helen Denholm, Julia Derbyshire, Jan Diamond, David Dimopoulos, Stephen Dungey, Lori Elliot, Beverley Elwood, Rich Fell, Eric Filer, Rory Fiore, Judith Flessati, Gene Fly, Mike Forsyth, Ian Fox, Kelli Frances, Diana
Fredericks, Roger Funk, Doug Fyffe, Laurie Gebhard, Fran Gemmer, Monica Gibson, Bonnie Godsy, Grant Grahn, Neil Graydon, Shari Gurrie, Ray Haglund, Dean Hanley, Fil Harvie, Ellie Heath, Sharon Hilton, Rick Holmes, Tracy Hondro, Marcus Hughes, Christopher Janeshewski, Laura Jensen, Bing Joffre, Dan Johnson, Pam Jones, David C. Jones, Gary Keith, John Kelamis, Peter Kenny, Andrew Kyle, Margaret Labossiere, Denise Lambier, Patrick Lazarus, John Lecuyer, Yvan Lepawsky, Noah Ley, David L’Hirondelle, Tyronne Linds, Brian Lippa, Christine Ludwig, Patsy MacDonald, Ken MacDonald, Shawn Mackenzie, Donnard Malpass, Marjorie Mandryk, Corey Margalit, Ita Marr, David Marriott, Alan Matysio, Amy McAteer, Gerry McCreadie, Drew McDonald, Ian Ross McGowan, Dave McKenna, Patrick McKay, Tamara McLarty, Jim McLeod, David Mochrie, Colin Moon, Louise Moon, Lyle Morris, Dave Mossley, Robin
Mulligan, Brian Myers, Graham Nadler, Peter Newell, Douglas O’Neil, Colleen Osborne, Steve Owen, Scott Panych, Morris Paquin, Suzanne Petersen, David Pollard, Barbara Porter, Michelle Rendall, Henry Rhodes, Laura Rice, Nicholas Roberts, Ken Robertson, Nancy Rohl, Mike Rosati, Chris Rumph, Damian Russell, David Savath, Phil Schooley, Mark Schooley, Randy Seary, Kim Selody, Kim Sera, Clare Shostak, Amy Sicoli, Christina Side, Richard Simpson, Denis Skelton, Quinn Smith, Jason Snieckus, Naomi Sood, Veena Stamm, Raimund Stiles, Ryan Taylor, Stayci Timoshyk, Bill Tortolano, Bruno Totino, Frank Totino, Tony Turk, Ingrid Ungaro, Janice Van Deurse, Lynn Van Keekan, Fran Van Riesen, Wendy Van Ritzen, Kirsten Valleau, Lori Watts, Chris Weatherly, Mark Weeks, Heidi Lynne Weiss, Kate White, Gordon Wilding, Amy Williams, Denalda Winkelman, Tallulah Wodchis, David Yorke, Wayne Thomas Zeilinger, Beatrice

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