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Wed, 06 Sept


St Paul's Lutheran Church

Masters Program

You are ready to take improv the highest level. Our founder & special guests from around the world will help you get there.

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Masters Program
Masters Program


06 Sept 2023, 6:00 pm – 25 Oct 2023, 9:00 pm

St Paul's Lutheran Church, 12 King Street, Mount Cook, Wellington 6021, New Zealand


Note:  Students meet in person for this class.

How does a maestro reach their potential? Driven by their own passion for their craft and artistic expression, they study. They read. They practice their instrument under the structure and feedback of the best mentors available, in a group full of equally passionate peers who inspire and support each other in their journey of exponential growth.

This is what a Masters Program provides. And for the first time, this is what our founder Ben Zolno is offering – a program to get you to the point of expressing yourself fully and effortlessly in this magic art form.

This new program is your path, if you are ready for one or more of the following... to:

  • Be the very best you can be
  • Perform professionally at the highest levels, anywhere in the world
  • Teach at any level
  • Blow the mind of both your audience, peers, and yourself
  • Be part of a local and global community wanting the same

This program has parallels to a masters program in academia – designed to be a few years' dedication to education, so you can master your craft... But Improv Connection's Masters Program is at your own pace (8 week blocks), you don't have to write a thesis, and is less than 1/10 the cost of a formal degree. 

Each week, you'll have a 3-hour class with Ben, where you'll fully dive in, to unlock your genius – focusing on character work, scene structure, presentation, show design, long form, short form... and of course, the IC hallmark: expanding emotional expression.

Unlike any other class, you'll also have the option to participate in the following at no extra cost:

  • Sessions in which you perform with world-class guests, getting practice with the best
  • One-on-one session with Ben to focus on just you
  • Special show viewings, with private critiques of the performance
  • Weekly extra practice session
  • Buddy system to practice specific skills when inspired
  • Sessions as an assistant coach
  • Social meetups for just Masters' students

With classes, sessions, experiences, and opportunities tailored to your specific needs and sticking points, Masters provides an extremely supportive atmosphere, creating trust and bonds intended to lead to the creation of performance troupes.

And like any Masters program, this will be partially pushed and shaped by you. 

By the time you're done with the Masters Program, you should be recognized by some of the best in the world as one of their peers – consistently performing at a high level, wowing your audiences with your points of view, and even still on an eternal path of teaching and learning.


Masters classes run for 8 weeks on Wednesday evenings from 6pm - 9pm, from September 6th to Ocotber 25th, with a show on Monday October 30th


5:45pm: Arrival, 6pm – 9pm: Class 

Students will meet in person at St Paul's Lutheran Church. Ben Zolno will lead two in-person lessons, including the first class, and many of the other sessions Ben will attend via computer. This format has worked very well for coaching sessions over the last year.

Special Sessions

To be announced and arranged, in cooperation with students. Some will be in person, others online.

Workouts & Jams 

For extra practice, these are highly recommended.


Masters is taught by Ben Zolno, Founder and Director of Improv Connection - an improviser and filmmaker with over 20 years of improv experience, including study and/or performance at Second City, iO Chicago, UCB, and various theatres in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco Bay Area, and throughout New Zealand.  

He will be joined by special high-level guests from around the world, all eager to share their knowledge and play with you.


Masters students will perform in the End of Term showcase on Monday, August, 21st at The Pow Wow Room. Further performance opportunities TBC based on student demand. Let's discuss.

Application, Payment & Refund Policy

We choose the students who are a good fit for this course – the instructor and staff must feel you have a good sense of emotion-based improv, and all the skills covered in Uni Program Level. Your payment will secure your spot. If you're approved, we'll let you know, and you're set to go! If we are unable to accommodate you in the course as an applicant, your fee will be refunded within 24 hours. If you join us in the course, but leave the course after your first class session, your payment is refundable, minus an administration fee of $100. No refunds are offered after the second class session begins. All course fees are GST-inclusive.

Receipts for GST refunds, tax deductions (for professional development, etc), or other purposes are available upon request.

We value passion and commitment over profit. So, to maximise participation, we offer scholarships to those who can not afford to pay the full amount.  If you need a scholarship, please contact us about a scholarship by using the contact form, and we'll try to work something out. We've never turned away a student due to a lack of funds.

Public Health

In the event of COVID-19 outrbreak or other health event making meeting in person less safe, we may conduct classes online via Zoom. Alternatively, medical masks may be required to be worn during classes as conditions change. We encourage students and coaches to stay home if they are feeling sick, and wear masks if they have any doubt


  • Masters Program

    This includes all lessons!

    From $299.00 to $329.00
    Sale ended
    • $329.00
      +$8.23 service fee
    • $299.00
      +$7.48 service fee




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