The Tiny Funny Women Fest is January 6 and 7 at HUGE Theater located at 3037 Lyndale Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55408

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Saturday January 6, 2018

  • 9:30 am to 10:00 am – Check In and Continental Breakfast
  • 10:00 am to 1:00 pm – Ensemble work with your director: Lauren Anderson, Jill Bernard, or The Holograms (Open to Women)
  • 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm – Getting to Know You Potluck (Open to All)
  • 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm – Workshop: The Trouble with Yes-And – Workshop and Discussion with Amy Seham (Open to All)
  • 8:00 pm to 9:30 pm – See the Party Riot show at HUGE Theater (Coupon code for comp ticket)

Sunday January 7, 2018

  • 9:30 am to 10:00 am – Check In and Continental Breakfast
  • 10:00 am to 1:00 pm – Ensemble work with your director: Lauren Anderson, Jill Bernard, or The Holograms (Open to Women)
  • 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm – Lunch TBD (Open to All)
  • 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm – Workshop: Strong Character Choices – Workshop with Taj Ruler (Open to All)
  • 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm – Call time for performers before Ensemble Showcase
  • 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm – Ensemble Showcase and Trailblazer Award (Open to All)

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Ensemble Directors

The Holograms

The Holograms are Des Moines’ first, and only, all female improv team. Their long-form is not only high energy, but sharp and full of satire, guaranteed to make you forget the state of the union, even if just for one evening. Sometimes family-friendly, sometimes dirtier than the cops in Training Day, the Holograms gals will keep you engaged from their first line to their last.

The Holograms are made up of six fiercely funny women: Kristy Graves, Kim Scarfe, Jill Leary, Jen Kuhle, Jessica Elwell and Laura Merz. They are known for not only their time on stage, but their production abilities as well, having produced a variety of comedy shows throughout the Des Moines Metro such as Drunk Book Club, Kitten Bomb Presents, and The Workshop, as well as the sketch show The Dog and Pony Show. While their talents outside of improv range from stand up, to theater, to short films and sketch writing, they all agree that there is nothing quite as marvelous as a happy dance backstage after a killer set..

Jill Bernard

JIll HeadshotJill Bernard has been performing with ComedySportz-Twin Cities since 1993, and is a founding member of HUGE Theater in Uptown Minneapolis. Her one-woman improv piece, Drum Machine, has been featured in over forty improv festivals. She has taught and performed improv in Norway, Australia, Canada, Argentina, Peru, Italy, Germany and over thirty-five of the United States; and also on an episode of MTV “Made.” She is one-half of the duo SCRAM with Joe Bill of the Annoyance Theater. An Artistic Associate of the Chicago Improv Festival, she has studied at the Annoyance Theater, Improv Olympic, the Brave New Workshop and other organizations; and is the recipient of the 2005 Chicago Improv Festival Avery Schreiber Ambassador of Improv Award, and the 2007 Miami Improv Festival award for Best Solo Show.

Lauren Anderson

lauren HeadshotLauren Anderson is best known for her work at the Brave New Workshop.  She has appeared in Brett Favre’s Christmas Spectacular II: The Second Coming *Spilling Me Softly; or Once the Gulf Goes Black it Never Goes Back *Toyota! The Runaway Musical Hit! * How to Make Love Like a Minnesotan III: The Full Montevideo * Brett Favre’s Christmas Spectacular: The Immaculate Interception * The Brave New Workshop Saves the Planet; or Yes We Can, But Do We Have To? * How to Make Love Like a Minnesotan II: Love is in Bloomington * How to Make Love Like a Minnesotan: Sleepless in Shakopee * All I want for Christmas is 700 Billion Dollars: Our 50th Noel * The Lion, the Witch, and the War Hero; or Is McCain Able? * The Brave New Workshop at 50: Old Enough to Know Better * Stuck in the Manger With You; or Carol On, My Wayward Son * YouCube: This Company Loves Misery * And many others!  She is also a member of the improv groups Five Man Job and a cast member of Show X at HUGE Theater.


Taj Ruler

taj-ruler_6963headshot-533x800Taj Ruler is an actor, improviser, voice over artist, and teacher in the Twin Cities. She moved back from California after graduating from Pitzer College with her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Theatre Performance and Media Studies. She has also studied at the Guthrie Theatre, the Brave New Workshop, and The London Dramatic Academy.

As an improvisational actor, Taj has worked at a number of improvisational theaters in the Twin Cities. She has additionally trained at The Groundlings in LA and Second City in Chicago. Taj was also the director of Without a Box, the improvisational theater company at her college. They performed innovative and experimental improv for college students 1-2 times a month. Her work and training as an improviser has allowed Taj to take more risks, grow as a scripted actor, and have a, “yes and” attitude in her every day life.

Amy Seham

Amy Seham came to Gustavus in 1997 with a Ph.D. in Theatre from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, an M.F.A. from Northwestern University and years of experience as Artistic Director of Performance Studio and Free Shakespeare on the Green in New Haven, Connecticut. She has directed a wide variety of shows in the Anderson Theatre from musicals to Shakespeare to original works. In the last six summers, Amy’s work as a playwright has also been presented at the Minnesota Fringe Festival in products featuring Gustavus students and alumni. Amy’s research and teaching specialties include improvisation and theatre for social justice.
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Her book, Whose Improv Is It Anyway? Beyond Second City, exploring power and process in Chicago improv-comedy was published in 2001. She has created and conducted workshops on race, gender and resisting stereotypes in improv at universities, theatres and conferences across the United States, as well as in Ireland and India. At Gustavus Amy has intensified her commitment to theatre for social justice, developing a new course in Creative Social Justice Theatre and mentoring the student social justice theatre troupe I Am, We Are. She lives in Saint Peter with her wonderful daughter, Miranda.

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