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Frequently Asked Questions:

 

What's the deal with Studio LOL?  Who are you guys, how did you get started, and why should I sign my kid up for improv here (or anywhere)?

Owner Katy Chase was recently interviewed by VoyageLA and went in to great detail on these topics. You can click here to read the full article.

 

What exactly do you DO in improv class?

This is the hardest question for us to answer, but we'll try.  To put it simply, our class is like an upbeat, funny acting class.  If you've seen the TV show "Whose Line Is It Anyway?", you have a sense of what improv is.  Basically, it's a form of comedy where the live audience yells out suggestions to the performers, who work as a team to create stories and scenes off the top of their head.  In improv, we don't write prepared jokes (like in stand-up comedy on Comedy Central), and we don't memorize funny lines (like in sketch comedy on Saturday Night Live or sitcoms like Seinfeld).  Everything in improv is made up on the spot.  So in class we spend time:  warming up with silly group exercises, learning longform improv (how to build scenes from scratch and tie them together to other scenes), and how to play age-appropriate short-form improv games that are structured to perform well in front of a live audience.  If you're still confused, we welcome you to attend one of our student performances.  It will give you a more clear picture of what it is that we teach.  Here's a video of our students and teachers performing and learning improv:


 

Can you really teach comedy to kids... and why would you do such a thing? 

Children and teens respond well to improv and sketch comedy instruction because, well... it's fun!  Our goal is to mask the important life lessons, social skills, and discipline we're teaching, behind a whole lot of laughter and ridiculousness.  Spontaneity, working together as a team, concentration, creativity, and confidence are some of the skills we nurture.  We're like regular school in that our exercises require thought, focus, and problem solving.  But in comedy school, there are no wrong answers.  Kids have the freedom to interpret the exercises as they please.  At Studio LOL, being unique, smart, and a little quirky is super, super cool.  You can click here to read an interesting article on the subject of improv being a valuable tool for learning in the academic classroom setting.

 

Is this a "child actor" place?

No.  Our mission is to share all the benefits of improv comedy training with regular ol' every day kids.  The majority of our student body takes class simply because it's fun, and because their parents are EXTREMELY SMART and understand all the lifeskills to be gained.  (See what we did there?)  The point is, all are welcome.  Introverts, extroverts, beginners, pros, class clowns and even class misfits will feel right at home.  If your child happens to be pursuing show business as a profession, that's cool.  Don't let us scare you off.  It's just that we approach all of our students with the goal of helping them grow as smart, happy, and kind young people, not as polished, professional performers.  We take the safe environment that we've created pretty seriously, and we like to protect it from the results-oriented realities of show biz. 

 

How do class payments work?

At the time of registration, parents have the option of making a payment in full or setting up monthly payments.  For monthly payments, a Monthly Payment Contract is required, which will be emailed to you once your deposit has been processed.  You'll have the option of setting up auto billing or making manual payments every 4 weeks on our website or by sending cash or check to class.  Payments in the form of cash, check, or credit card are payable in person or by mail at 12434 Moorpark St, Studio City, CA 91604.  When mailing a payment, please include your email, preferred class day/time, and child's name/age.  You'll receive a confirmation via email.  Checks should be made payable to Studio LOL.  Because we're a small family business, parents sometimes ask what payment method we prefer.  We're happy to accept any form of payment, but cash or check payments are best, since they help us avoid hefty transaction fees.  Either way, we appreciate your business very much.

 

How do absences and make-up classes work?

A maximum of 3 make-up classes are granted per sesssion.  Because improv is a "team sport" and we keep our class sizes small, students are missed when they do not attend class.  We kindly ask that parents discuss the class commitment with their child before signing up.  However, when unexpected absences come up, we're happy to help accommodate a make-up class.  In order to do so, 24-hour notice is required.  Students will be given the option to make-up their missed class during any other scheduled class time on our calendar, within an appropriate age range.  Parents should email us to schedule an appointment for a make-up class.  The make-up class window of opportunity will expire 30 days after the missed class or at the end of the current class session (whichever comes first), and any missed make-up classes will be forfeited.  No refunds or monetary credit will be given for any absences, with or without noticeAny last-minute absences due to things like sickness, auditions, or forgetting will not be guaranteed a make-up class, but we'll try and fit you in if we have space.  A call, text, or email is appreciated in the event of a last-minute absence so that we can try and open the spot to another student.  We are unable to accommodate makeup classes for any "No Call/No Show" absences.  In the event of chronic absences throughout a class session, we reserve the right to excuse a student from class and offer their seat to another child on the wait-list.  We also reserve the right to withhold performance privileges if we feel it would be in the best interest of the student and the class.   

 

What are your cancellation/ drop-out policies?

In general, we're a small family business and are happy to work with you whenever we can.  If a cancellation isn't costing us money because a class or camp wasn't sold out anyway, we're happy to issue a 100% refund.  It's when the cancellation costs another student a spot in class that we're stuck with enforcing the following Cancellation Policies:

For weekly classes:  A non-refundable $50 deposit is built into the first month's class fee.  Cancellations that come in at least 14 days prior to the first class of the session can be refunded, less the deposit.  Cancellations that come in at least 7 days prior to the first class will be responsible for the first month's payment.  Our 7-day-notice policy extends throughout the entire session.  If parents on a Monthly Payment Contract fail to give a cancellation notice by the 7-day deadline before the payment due-date, the next month's payment will be charged. 

For week-long camps:  A non-refundable $50 deposit is built into the camp fee.  Cancellations that come in at least 7 days prior to the camp start-date can be refunded, less the deposit.  Last-minute cancellations will be charged the deposit, plus Monday's fee.  Drop-outs that take place mid-week will be charged for a single day post drop-out, in order for us to have 24 hours to re-book the spot.  On the rare occasion that a student drops out because they aren't enjoying camp, the extra day fee is waived.

For parties:  A non-refundable deposit of $150 is due upon booking your party.  Cancellations that come in at least 14 days prior to the party will not be responsible for the balance of $245.  Otherwise, unless we're able to book another party in your time-slot at the last minute, you will be responsible for the cost in full.  

 

Which class should I choose?

Our classes and camps are broken down by age group.  Everything on our calendar is suitable for beginners, unless otherwise noted.  If your child falls between age ranges, feel free to use your instincts when selecting a class.  Please note: If siblings of different ages prefer to take class together, they must opt for the younger age group. 

 

Can I watch class? 

We do not allow parents inside the main studio during class.  Unfortunately, it makes for a difficult distraction for the students.  Teaching comedy and encouraging spontaneity gets tricky when there's an audience present.  We understand that parents of young students who are brand new to our school might feel anxious about leaving their child in a new environment with people they've never met, especially if they were not referred to us by word of mouth.  If this is you, please feel free to contact us and arrange for a Meet & Greet appointment.  We'll be happy to give you a tour of the facility, meet your child, and answer any questions you may have.

 

What do parents do during class?

Most parents drop off and return at the end of class.  Parents are also welcome to relax in our lobby or visit one of our (walking distance) neighbors: The Studio City Library, Beeman Park, or Coffee Fix.

 

Where exactly is Studio LOL located?

We are located at 12434 Moorpark St. in Studio City, just east of Whitsett, on the south side of the street.  The parking lot is in the rear of the building.

 

What should I bring/wear to class?

Students should dress however they're comfortable.  We are a No Shoes classroom, so socks are handy.  (We have plenty of clean socks available for borrowing.)  Optional Studio LOL T-shirts are available for $15.

 

Do you steer students away from yucky/ inappropriate subject matter?

Absolutely.  One of our rules at Studio LOL is to "Keep Grandma Happy."  This means that our standard for appropriate-ness of content is based on an imaginary audience full of grandmas.  We encourage students to play to the top of their intelligence and to come up with ideas that require thought and creativity.

 

Is my child too young? 

Our youngest class is designed for 4-6 year olds.  When it comes to 4 year olds, the program is best suited for kids who have developed strong verbal skills, are able to listen and follow directions, and who can handle potty time without any assistance from our teachers.  Otherwise, we suggest waiting until age 5 to begin.  Parents are welcome to set up a trial class if they're unsure. 

 

What is the expected behavior for students at Studio LOL?  My child has a diagnosed behavioral challenge and/or struggles with listening and following directions.  Will the program be a good fit?

It truly depends on the individual child.  In general, we have found that all types of kids from all types of backgrounds can really excel in our program.  That being said, any child with a behavioral diagnosis will certainly be challenged in our classroom.  Here's why:  A major aspect of our curriculum involves learning about stage time versus audience time, and this is taught through constant transitions throughout class.  Students learn to be energetic, outgoing, and outside-the-box while on stage, and then learn to switch off and be concentrated, courteous, and silent while their classmates are on stage.  We incorporate these transitions because they teach focus, discipline, and a general respect for the performance environment, which is applicable to all kinds of audience-related experiences in life.  This style of teaching also prepares our students to perform in their class comedy show, where they will be required to be "on" while performing and "off" while backstage.  It's expected that these transitions are challenging for any child, or any grown-up for that matter, but it is also expected that over time our students grasp these concepts and respect our rules.  We teach our behavior expectations with compassion, but the boundaries are made clear and non-negotiable to our students.  Our high standards of behavior apply to all students, regardless of diagnosis or background.  Although we would love to accept any and all children into our program, we do make it a priority to protect the integrity of our classroom so that other students' experience of Studio LOL is not compromised.  We reserve the right to dismiss students from class if behaviors are disruptive.  Regarding parents of children with specific concerns in this area, we strongly suggest setting up a trial class, and bringing any diagnosis or medical information to our attention in advance.  This will help us better answer your questions and provide feedback. 

 

Can I come see the Studio? 

Yes!  We'd love to show you around and meet you and your child!  An appointment is required.

 

Can I register for a class after the session has already started?

Yes!  We accept ongoing enrollments for classes, but only as space permits.  If we're able to add your child into a class mid-session, your payment will be prorated to reflect their enrollment date.

 

What if nothing on your schedule is convenient for me?

We're happy to add a more convenient class or camp to our schedule at your request, so please let us know if you'd like to suggest a time or date for an addition to our calendar.  We require a minimum of 8 students.  If you'd like to gather up 8 funny kids and create your own class, woohoo!  If you don't know that many funny kids, we'll simply place you on a waitlist and keep you posted once we have enough students to start.

 

Can I bring my child to a student show to see if this is something they'd like?

Yep!  Comedy shows at Studio LOL always star our hilarious students.  Shows are open to the public and fun for the whole family.  Adult tickets are $5 and kids are free.  RSVP to studioLOLclasses@gmail.com.

 

Will my child get to perform? 

Yes!  Well, probably.  All of our weekly classes perform twice per year - in December before the holiday break, and in late spring at the end of the school year.  Our week-long camps for ages 8 and up culminate in a performance as well, unless otherwise noted.  Feel free to confirm with us before enrolling in a particular session or camp if the performance aspect is important to you. 

 

Will my child become a famous actor/comedian from studying and networking at Studio LOL?!?!

How do we put this delicately... No!  Our school is in no way connected to the business of getting kids an agent, introducing them to casting directors, or advising parents on how to get started in show business.  We're happy to refer you to other companies for these services.  Sometimes Katy refers kids out for projects when asked to do so as a personal favor.  It's helpful if she has your child's picture and resume with agent info on file if you'd like to be in the loop when these opportunities come up.  Materials can be emailed to studioLOLclasses@gmail.com.

 

Are you hiring?

Not exactly, but as Studio LOL looks forward to expanding, we are always accepting excellent applications for teachers.  Applicants should have experience in the world of performing improv, as well as the world of working with children.  Interested candidates should send a cover letter and resume that reflects their experience in these areas to Katy at studioLOLclasses@gmail.com.

 

How do I sign up?

Click here: REGISTER NOW!