Vancouver Theatresports League
|Vancouver Theatresports League|
Vancouver Theatresports League logo
|Date of premiere||1980|
|Performers||Brian Anderson, Andrew Barber, Elizabeth Bowen, Chris Casillan, Nathan Clark, Ted Cole, Roman Danylo, Graeme Duffy, Dan Dumsha, Chip Ellis, Eric Fell, Angela Galanopoulos, Jeff Gladstone, Tom Hill, Denise Jones, Ellen Kennedy, Devin Mackenzie, Alan Marriott, Lauren McGibbon, David Milchard, Allen Morrison, Margret Nyfors, Scott Patey, Bill Pozzobon, Michael Robinson, Randy Schooley, Shaun Stewart, Michael Teigen, Taz VanRassel, Pearce Visser|
|Sound||VJ Delos-Reyes, Grant Godsy, Laura Skelton|
|Lights||Su Scarfe, Amy Wilding|
|Executive Director||Jay Ono|
|Board of Directors||Marlie Oden, Doug McCann, Gary Arca, Jeffrey Goldberg, Robert Phillips, Roland Monteiro, Claire Brown, Sarah Hentschel|
|Program advisory committee||Jay Ono, Brian Anderson, Nathan Clark, Denise Jones|
|Instructors||Nathan Clark, Graeme Duffy, Pearce Visser, Margret Nyfors|
Vancouver Theatresports League (VTSL) is a Vancouver based professional improvisational theatre company, best known for providing an impetus for the present worldwide interest in TheatreSports at Expo in 1986. The improv techniques pioneered by it are now used for everything from corporate training to TV parodies. In 2014 they started The Improv Comedy Institute, an educational offshoot of the company.
It is located at Duranleau Street across from the Kid’s Only Market on Granville Island, where a unique building was renovated into a 186-seat fully licensed Improv Centre with the help of $200,000 savings by VTSL plus a $500,000 Heritage Canada Grant and a $300,000 term loan from Canada’s largest community credit union Vancity. It performs improvisational comedy Wednesdays through Saturdays. Until 2010, its previous homes were City Stage, later renamed The Back Alley Theatre, the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre and The Arts Club Revue Theatre.
Shows, festivals and competitions
Current shows include Rookie Night, Improv Test Kitchen, Ultimate Improv Championship, Late Night Fridays, Scared Scriptless, and TheatreSports. VTSL is also a six-time world champion in comedy improvisation. VSTL has had two television shows, Instant Comedy which aired as two specials on A&E in 1997 and The 11th Hour, a sketch comedy series on the CBC that ran from 1999-2000. VTSL has been for 25 years the host of The Massacre (previously The St. Valentine's Day Massacre) Tournament and international competition.
Players and alumni of VTSL include: Ryan Stiles and Colin Mochrie (Whose Line Is It Anyway), Ellie Harvie (The New Addams Family), Dean Haglund (The X-Files & The Lone Gunmen), Gary Jones (Stargate SG-1), Roman Danylo (Comedy Inc.), Penelope Corrin (Royal Canadian Air Farce) and Nancy Robertson (Hiccups, Corner Gas).
In 1997, VTSL won the Jessie Award for Excellence in Interactive Theatre for High Schools with their production of Free Willie Shakespeare created by Ian Boothby, Dean Haglund and Ellie Harvie. VTSL has also produced and directed the Jessie Awards for past 9 years.
- Vancity loan supports the laughter created by the Vancouver TheatreSports League, Vancity financial co-operative, 2010
- Vancouver Theatresports League, Tourism Vancouver, Arts and Culture, 2014
- The Massacre Returns January 22, Greater Vancouver Professional Theatre Alliance (GVPTA), 2014
- Annual Jessie Richardson Award Honors Vancouver Theatre, Playbill, 16 June 1997