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About Theatre Momentum

Theatre Momentum was founded in 2007, as the natural evolution of Work(shop)-in-Progress, our signature workshop series.

The mission of Theatre Momentum is to ally the skills of Chicago improvisation with the strongest traditions of live theater. We strive to create original improvised narratives for the stage. Theatre Momentum is theatre that happens to be improvised.

History...
In September 2005, Artistic Director Tony Rielage began Work(shop)-in-Progress, a weekly improv theatre lab designed to flesh out and polish a variety of improv show concepts he had brainstormed over the previous 10+ years. The workshop quickly evolved to bring in other performers' concepts, and the brainstorming/polishing process was honed, with the help of Nick Kanel in the early months, Don Hall for over two years, and a variety of new coaches after that.

In early 2006, WiP spawned a handful of shows that ran briefly at the Playground Theater and the Apollo Studio Theater, under the banner ersatz theatre. After this period, Theatre Momentum began to evolve, and a new batch of shows began in 2007 under the TM name. In 2009, TM got a home at the Theatre Momentum Studio. For 5 years, we ran workshops and events there.

In January of 2015, we left our old studio and opened Pendulum Space, our new studio for rehearsals, shows, and workshops.
 

The best is yet to come. Theatre Momentum is always moving forward...


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General info: info@theatremomentum.com

Studio Rentals: pendulum@theatremomentum.com

Press/PR/Marketing: marketing@theatremomentum.com

Auditions: auditions@theatremomentum.com

Classes: classes@theatremomentum.com

 

by mail:

Pendulum Space/Theatre Momentum

1803 W. Byron Street

Suite 215

Chicago, IL 60613

 

by phone: (872) 216-8775


 
 

Ensemble

Our excellent ensemble is what keeps the TM shows going strong. Meet the cast...
 

 
  Jeremy Adler
 
  Kimberly Banks
Kimberly is a native of Chicago’s fabled south side. She is a singer/ songwriter/ actor/improviser/playwright. She is a graduate of the Music and Comedy Conservatories of the Second City and completed the improv program at the Annoyance Theater. She is also a proud graduate of the Black Box Acting Studio. Kimberly is proud to be a part of Theatre Momentum.
 
  Sean Bishop

 
  Alex Brown
Originally from Martinsville, Indiana, Alex studied TV & film production as well as theatre in school before pursuing a career in comedy. He has performed stand up at the Limestone Comedy Festival in Bloomington In, before making the jump to Chicago to continue his comedy studies at The Second City, iO, and elsewhere. You can also catch Alex in uniform on season 4 of Chicago PD this season. He would like to thank his best friend and inspiration, Father David Brown, his biggest cheerleader, Mother Tabby Malone, and the encouragement and unceasing support a father Kurt Messick.
 
  Nathan Burns
Nathan Burns is a diligent, hard-working student with Theatre Momentum. Theatre Momentum was Nathan's first stop on the journey to glory and smooth sailings. A Chicago resident for four years now, Nathan loves the local store front theater and wishes everyone could love and appreciate all art as much as himself. He hopes to make stops at all the staple Improv theaters in Chicago such as Annoyance, IO and Comedy Sports. And maybe Second City, but that's everybody, right? Further than just the theater scene Nathan is a rapper and a father. He hopes you enjoy the show, whatever it might be!
 
  Colby Carlson

 
 
  Luis Castelló
Luis started improvising back in Mexico City and couldn’t stop ever since. He moved to Chicago back in 2008 to pursue a career in public relations, but he was pleasantly surprised when discovering that Chicago was also the improv capital of the world. Since then he has studied at Second City, iO and CSz, and has recently worked with Under The Gun Theater in “Reality Ever After” and Adventure Stage Chicago in “Neighborhood Perspectives.” He still can’t get over the fact that he and his friends put together “You’ll Be the Death of Me,” an awesome improvised show inspired by the Day of the Dead.
  Lincoln Chandler (Artistic Associate)
Lincoln is honored to be part of the Theater Momentum family. The Chicago native is a regular at The Mixer, hosted by the Playground Theater, and has previously performed with The Florida A&M University Essential Theatre (Tallahassee, FL) and the MIT Black Theater Guild (Cambridge, MA). When not performing, Lincoln can usually be found navigating piles of data, random neighborhoods, or the dance floor.
 
 
  Duane Deering

 

 

  Connor Doyle (Artistic Associate)
Connor Doyle is Virginia born, raised, and educated. He moved to Chicago in 2012 to improvise, make friends, and be cold. He can be seen improvising around the city with his friends in Cooper Manning and Rumple. Past show highlights include Parade, Elephant’s Graveyard, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, and Gruesome Playground Injuries, all at the University of Virginia. 
 
 
  Emily Ember (Artistic Associate)
Emily Ember feels very excited to be working with Theatre Momentum. A recent graduate of Northwestern University, Emily loves improv and is currently studying at Second City, iO Chicago, and the Annoyance. Dancing, French bulldogs, and Brazilian jiujitsu are the way into her heart. Emily is working on her blue belt, so be nice or watch out!
 
  Dennis Episcopo
Dennis has been active in the Chicago Theatre community for 4 years. He discovered improv while in graduate school and fell in love with immediately. He is happy and grateful to be part of the Theatre Momentum community.
 
 
  Samantha Garcia
Samantha is an alumna of Columbia College Chicago with a B.A. in Acting. She has also completed both Second City’s Improv and Comedy Writing programs and does commercial work. In her spare time she enjoys taking naps, catching up on her shows, and depending on the day, convincing herself that Buzzfeed quizzes results are real.
  Quinn Hatch  (Artistic Associate)
Quinn is an actor and writer originally from Mount Vernon, WA. He is very excited to be a part of Consequence, and has nothing but amazing things to say about everyone involved. You might have seen him doing improv around the city or in various venues in Pacific Northwest. Quinn is currently training in the Second City Conservatory and has a MFA in Dramatic Writing from the University of Idaho.
 
 
  Ryan Haynes  (Artistic Associate)
Ryan Haynes moved from his hometown of St. Louis, Missouri to Chicago to study comedy and improvisation in fall of 2013 - and besides the winter that immediately followed it, he has not regretted the decision once. He has trained with Second City and The Annoyance, and can be seen regularly at the Playground with RECESS! and Cornservatory and everywhere else with TBA!
 
  Kyle Hendrix (Artistic Associate)
Kyle Hendrix hails all the way from sunny Tempe, Arizona. He moved to Chicago in 2012 to study comedy and improvisation. He still is not used to having a season that isn't summer but he has learned to cope. He has trained at Second City and One Group Mind since moving to the Windy City, and can also be seen performing with fellow cast member Ryan Haynes all around Chicago with their team TBA! 
 
  Matt Hicks (Artistic Associate)
Matt is a Boston area native who has lived in Chicago for 10 years. After graduating UMass where he performed with Mission Improvable; he was a cast member at Boston’s Improv Asylum before moving to Chicago. In the Windy City he has been in the cast of the Comedysportz Mainstage, on teams at IO, as well as numerous shows including Dirty Water, Chatter & Rock FM.
  Erika Hood
 
 
  Dan Jackson (Artistic Associate)
Dan Jackson has been a part of the Theatre Momentum ensemble since 2015, appearing in Consequence, Repercussion, Fugue, One-Act, School of Life, Elements, and Holiday Dinner. He received a Bachelor of Arts from Kent State University, and has trained at the Annoyance and pH Comedy Theater. Dan is also an accomplished playwright whose written work has been performed by Blackbird Theatre Company, Whiskey Rebellion Theatre, City Lit Theater, American Theatre Company, and as part of the Short and Sweet Theatre Festival, both in Hollywood and in Melbourne. His latest full length play, The Curse on Mordrake House, was performed at Chicago Fringe Festival by Barebones Theatre Company to sold-out houses.
  Bryan Kravitz
Bryan is a graduate of Columbia College Chicago and The Second City conservatory. Some recent credits include performances such as Proof (Hal) and the Glass Menagerie (Jim the Gentlemen Caller). Bryan has thoroughly enjoyed the exploration of dramatic improvisation and hopes to continue working with Theatre Momentum on future projects.
 
  Jessica Landis (Artistic Associate)
Jessica Landis is an actress and improviser, which means she spends a lot of time pretending to do things and be people. Chicago audiences may have seen her perform with long-term-long-form group FrankenReagan at Mullen's, or doing improv at the One Group Mind theatre, or in a musical or two at the Annoyance theatre. She has taught improv at Theatre Momentum, the Improv Toolbox, and One Group Mind.
  Philip Lindsey
Philip Lindsey was born in Rome, Italy and grew up in Turkey, Egypt, Senegal, and South Africa. Philip is an alumni of UCSB and moved to Chicago two years ago. He can be spotted at the Annoyance Theatre, the Public House Theatre, and Second City. A special thank you to Andrew Gallant for his mentorship and Helen and Robert for their good humor and loving support. In bocca al lupo!
 
  Carl Luft
Carl is very excited to be performing with Theatre Momentum! He is a graduate of IO Theater's training program, as well as The Second City's Conservatory Program. He has performed as an ensemble member of One Group Mind, The Playground Theater, and a whole bunch of other places. Oh, and he did an Allstate commercial for the internet once! He would like to thank his loving parents, brother, sister, and friends for politely nodding and smiling when he says he is auditioning for stuff. Also, thank YOU for coming out to see our show!
  Mike McCarron (Artistic Associate)
Michael McCarron is a short-form improviser by trade who shakes his fist at the younger, longer-form improvisers around him. He has studied at iO and The Annoyance, and you can see him around the city in such productions as, Improvised Spanish Class, Impromptu Tutoring Hours, and the musical ¡Haz la tarea! He is humbled and delighted to be a part of Theater Momentum's ensemble.
 
  Alicia McDermott
Alicia McDermott hails from the city of Chicago as a singer/songwriter and has been in improv for the last four years in various theater styles from Second City, iO, Annoyance, MCL, Playground, BlackBox and now Theatre Momentum!

Alicia would like to thank her family, friends, boyf and her mami, Ann, for all of their amazing support and love.

 
  Kristi Mckay

 
 
  Riley Mondragon (Artistic Associate)
Riley is from California. She has recently appeared in At A Certain Age (Pride Films & Plays), Baby with the Bathwater (Fury) and Cheers 1773 (Public House). She is a graduate of the Conservatory program at the Second City and can be seen performing weekly at ComedySportz Chicago on their house team Zephyr.
 
  Yazmin Ramos (Artistic Associate)
Yazmin, a Chicagoland area native, originally decided to pursue a career in Journalism until an overwhelming urge to pursue her passion of performance caused her to move out of the cornfields and into the city! She has since studied acting, improvisation, and writing at the Second City. She can be seen performing in plays, sketch, and improvising at theatres around town including The Second City and Stage 773.
 
  Mike Reynolds
 
  Ellen Sawyer (Artistic Associate)
Ellen moved to Chicago in the Fall of 2013 to pursue her love of improvisation, standup, and acting, and hasn't looked back since. She has studied with Second City, Under the Gun Theatre, Improv Olympic, and the Lincoln Lodge, and has performed at both Second City and Under the Gun. You'll be seeing her in many shows to come!
 
  Jackie Sestak
Once Jackie said “Yes and”, her love for performing improv blossomed and has not stopped. She started off studying with the Neo-Futurists and then dove into performance art. This led to pursuing improv at the Second City, Annoyance Theatre and ComedySportz. Attracted to dramatic improv she’s performed previously with the groups Un/Comfortable Silences and re-Bound. Jackie is a teaching artist for Room2Improv where she works with veterans and students emphasizing the value of ‘Yes, and’. She would like to thank Jay, her friends and family for their support. Jackie is thrilled to be performing with an amazing cast at Theatre Momentum.
  Margeaux Temeltaş
An English teacher by day, Margeaux recently escaped CPS after seven years teaching on the west side of Chicago, affectionately known as Chiraq. She has trained at Second City and iO, as well as Meisner acting technique at Green Shirt Studio. She improvises regularly with the independent troupe, Domino, and recently played the double role of Mrs. Hamlin in “Mana & Her Underground Family” at Gorilla Tango Theatre. Margeaux is also a writer who has performed her own solo work at Second City, the Public House Theatre, and the Green Mill. She is currently developing a full-length solo show. It’s a work-in-progress, like her.
 
  Tony Tran

 
  Maggie Ward
 
 
  Michael Zimmermann
 
  Tony Rielage   (Artistic Director)
Tony is the Artistic Director and Founder of Theatre Momentum, and has been performing, directing, and producing improv theatre since 1992. He has trained at iO, the Playground, and Annoyance, and founded TM's precursor workshop, Workshop-in-Progress, and then Theatre Momentum. He is the head instructor in TM's Improv as Theatre Training Center, and sincerely believes in the immediacy and importance of treating improv as a dramatic artform.