‘Whose Line Is It Anyway?’ provided a cool, sophisticated platform for improv in the '90s, but ever since then it has largely been seen as unfashionable and unpopular.
But times are a-changin'. Alongside the long-established Comedy Store Players, there are now plenty of supremely talented improv groups performing on the London circuit (our current favourites are Jane Austen-themed troupe, Austentatious).
So, why not broaden your comedy horizon with an off-the-cuff, improvised show? To help you get started, the list below shows the next ten improv comedy gigs in London.
Upcoming improv comedy shows in London
The most famous comedy improv outfit in town perform off-the-cuff games and tomfoolery at the world famous Comedy Store twice a week. Regular Players include Paul Merton, Josie Lawrence, Neil Mullarkey, Andy Smart, Richard Vranch and Lee Simpson, but the line-ups change for each show. See 'dates and times' for the latest bills. Check out our guide to the Comedy Store.Read more
The wonderfully witty comedian, author and broadcaster Viv Groskop joins forces with Canadian actor Kerry Shale as People People to present this one-off night of funnies with some sketch and improv buddies. Featuring 'Whose Line?' regulars Josie Lawrence and Mike McShane, duo Folie à Deux and supergroup The Free Association.Read more
The annual London Improvathon – which is now in its eigth year – features 50 hours of continuous made-up-on-the-spot funnies from 20 actors plus guest artists. This year, the team are planning on improvising a whole 25-episode soap opera, all set in Hollywood. For those prepared to go the whole hog, a 50-hour pass is on sale. Or if you'd prefer to pop along for an hour or two, tickets are available for each episode (two hours). The show runs from 7pm on Friday May 29 right through to 9pm on Sunday May 31.Read more
An improvised chat-show from a very talented bunch including Cariad Lloyd, Phil Whelans, Charlotte Gittins, Andy Murray (not that one), Graham Dickson, Susan Harrison, Briony Redman, Paul Foxcroft and host, Second City veteran David Shore. Interviews with celebrity guests become improvised scenes, and getting comfy on the sofa on May 29 are hip hop improvisers Abandoman.Read more
Thought the saga of the scar-faced boy who lived was over? Think again. The aptly named Weirdos Comedy collective and ace promoters Laugh Out London have joined forces to present this (very unofficial) eighth Harry Potter story, live on stage. Expect an all-new story (we repeat: not Rowling approved) performed by a group of innovative comics, including Adam Larter as Potter himself, Marny Godden as Hermione, Matt Tedford as Ron Weasley, Eleanor Morton as his sister Ginny, Cassie Atkinson as Professor McGonagall, Jon Brittain as Hagrid, Joz Norris as Draco Malfoy and Gareth Morinan, Sooz Kempner and Jack De'Ath playing multiple roles. 'Accio comoedia!' (or something.)Read more
Highly impressive improv troupe Austentatious, who usually perform improvised Jane Austen novels of an evening, branch out to other forms of funnies. Austentatious Presents… features the usual crew – Andrew Murray, Amy Cooke-Hodgson, Joseph Morpurgo, Cariad Lloyd, Graham Dickson and Rachel Parris – plus guests working through non-Austen bits of improv, stand-up, character and musical comedy.Read more