suburban thunder


Tickling the funnybone of the 'burbs since 2015!

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Classes 2018

FALL • TweenProvTM

Beginning improv for Middle Schoolers who want to learn the basics. Mondays, October 22 - December 17 (Ages 10-13)

FALL • TeenProv: Beginning Longform

More advanced improv techniques for experienced teens. Mondays, October 22 - December 17 (Ages 12-16)

FALL • Advanced Improv for Performance

More intense and focused improv for experienced improvisors. October 17 - December 19 (Ages 14+)


SPECIAL 1-NIGHT ONLY GAME NIGHT! We all had a great time, enjoying snacks and playing our favorite improv games! Look for another Game Night coming in the new year!

Classes 2019


For beginning Middle School improvisors. Winter: Jan. 28 - March 25 (Showcase March 25) ••• Spring: April 8 - May 20 (Showcase date Friday, May 24) ••• (Ages 10-13)

TeenProv: Performance Workshop

For experienced Teen improvisors. Winter: Jan. 28 - March 25 (Showcase March 25) ••• Spring: April 8 - May 20 (Showcase date Friday, May 24) ••• (Ages 12-16)

Advanced Improv For Performance

Advanced improv study for experienced improvisors. Winter: Jan. 9 - March 13 ••• Spring: March 20 - May 22 ••• (Ages 14+)

2018-2019 Improv Show Season

  • $10
  • 02/09/2019 08:00 PM
  • 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon, CA, USA

STIC is back to show you the love! Give us your suggestions and watch the worlds we build for you. Each show is made up on the spot and uniquely presented to give you the feels!

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  • $10
  • 03/10/2019 02:00 PM
  • 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon, CA, USA

It's springtime and that means more spontaneous and creative improv fun! Be a part of the show and join us onstage or just give us your suggestions to inspire our scenes! Prizes! Games! Laughter! Family friendly improv, made just for you!

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  • $10
  • 05/04/2019 08:00 PM
  • 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon, CA, USA

Last spring, we brought you a birthday party and head to head director's competition, this year, we're bringing you even more! More games! More laughter! More competition! And more prizes!! Come see who we challenge in this last show of the season and find out who will be victorious!

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  • $10
  • 12/09/2018 02:00 PM
  • 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon, CA, USA

Treat your whole family to an afternoon of holiday fun and games! Join Suburban Thunder Improv Company for this family friendly and full of laughs made up show!

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  • $10
  • 10/13/2018 08:00 PM
  • 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon, CA, USA

You have questions, and we have the answers! What is the Loch Ness Monster? Does voodoo really work? Why do we throw spilled salt over our shoulder? These mysteries and more will be impro-explained to you in this evening of the unexplained!

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  • $10
  • 08/26/2018 02:00 PM
  • 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon, CA 94582, USA

Just the show you needed after a summer of fun! Games and scenes for the whole family. Play games and win prizes!

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Helping Hands

Sept. 25, 2016 - Monkey See, Monkey Do Family Friendly Improv Show [Performed by Amy, Anthony, and Jack's hands.]

ST!C at Marsh Madness

STiC performs at the Marsh in San Francisco. March 10, 2018 [40 minute set performed by Anthony, Edward, and Lisa]

ST!C at Made Up Theater

2018 Cage Match Tournament - Nov. 15, 2018 vs. Pea Soup Yes, And'ersons and All That Jazz ["Follow The Leaver" 20 minute set performed by Amy, Lisa, Edward, Jack, Anthony, and Kathy]

about us

Suburban Thunder Improv Company, spawned in the friendly confines of the docile San Francisco Bay Area bedroom community of San Ramon, is unique among improvisers.

Over the past decade, we have scoured the bedrooms of this sleepy neighborhood for closet improvisers - people with a penchant for play in between commutes to their workplaces during the day.

Holding their craziness inside for 8-12 hours a day in the "real world", these vampires of the stage come out at night, incisors flashing.

ST!C is made up of software engineers, seedy consultants, voyeuristic therapists, retired firemen, old men and hot women plus a broad swath of other representatives of the lunatic fringe.

None of us are pros - but we are poetry in improv!

about us

current ST!C troupe


the yoga instructor


the accents


the wordsmith


the drill sargeant


the counselor


the bossypants


Our newest Troupe Member!

guests • alumni • students of improv


Wednesday Troupe


Wednesday Troupe

Diana is an amazing mom of adult Triplets!

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Wednesday Troupe

Mike hopes to make you laugh, but mostly aspires to keep you engaged, entertained, and moved.

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Michael recently had the great opportunity to move on to a new chapter in his story.

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Mike created our Suburban Thunder Improv Company logo and performs with ST!C when he needs a dose of laughter!

think you know improv?

SNL hits improv on the head!

SNL explains Improv

Originally aired on NBC. May Dick Wolf's latest series takes an unflinching look at Chicago's improv scene and its members (Tina Fey, Alex Moffat, Melissa Villaseñor, Mikey Day, Luke Null, Chris Redd).


How do I get tickets for your show ?

Go to and look for "tickets" in the menu. Then pull down "buy tickets". You'll see our shows in the scrolling list there. You can also call the box office (925) 973-3343. If you suddenly feel like having a laugh, just drop by the box office right before the show. Tickets are always $10! Best value for your buck!

Where do you perform?

We perform at The Front Row Theater, at Dougherty Station Community Center. 17011 Bollinger Canyon Road, San Ramon

Do you have a group discount price?

We sure do! Call the box office for group sales of 10 or more. (925) 973-3343

I need a team building session for my office. Can you come here for that?

Absolutely! We can tailor a session just for your team. We'll help you to better work together, really listen to each other, and trust your instincts. Let us build a class with your specific needs. Email us for more details.

Can I bring my 8 year old to an evening show?

Our evening shows are designed for ages 14 and up. Due to mature content (and an occasional naughty word) we would rate our evening shows as PG14.

We do have an all age appropriate show on two Sundays in a season. That is the Monkey See, Monkey Do Family Friendly Improv Show. Your child will love this show! It's silly and funny and fast-paced and your little performer may be picked to play on stage with us!

what is improv?

improvisation [im-prov-uh-zey-shuh n, im-pruh-vuh-]

  • noun: the art or act of improvising, or of composing, uttering, executing, or arranging anything without previous preparation:

im·prov [ˈimpräv/]

  • noun; informal: improvisation, especially as a theatrical technique.

A Short History of Improv

You may have seen "Who's Line Is It Anyway?" and wondered how they can make up all of those funny scenes.  Here is a brief history of modern improv.

Improvisational theatre is as old as time. It pre-dates the invention of writing, since long before we started writing scripts we were telling stories by acting them out. It has its basis in  commedia dell'arte, an Italian Renaissance form of theater in which a traveling comedy troupe would perform farces without a written script. Though the basic scenario was agreed upon, the dialogue and  the pacing of the story often depended on audience reactions.

After the Commedia died off, improv theatre faded into obscurity until it was separately and spontaneously re-invented by two people who have shaped the craft as it exists today -- Keith Johnstone and Viola Spolin.

Keith Johnstone and Theatresports

Keith Johnstone started formulating his theories about creativity and spontaneity while growing up in England, and later brought them into his teaching at the University of Calgary. He felt that theatre had become pretentious, which is why the average man in the street didn't even consider attending it. Johnstone wanted to bring theatre to the people who went to sporting and boxing matches, the same audience that Shakespeare had written for in his day.

Johnstone decided that one approach would be to combine elements of both theatre and sports, to form a hybrid called Theatresports. The trappings of team sports were adapted to the improvisational theatre context; teams would compete for points awarded by judges, and audiences would be encouraged to cheer for good scenes and jeer the judges ("kill the umpire!").

Through Theatresports, Johnstone's ideas have gone on to influence (directly or indirectly) almost every major improv group.

Viola Spolin and Theatre Games

Back in the 1920's and 1930's, a woman named Viola Spolin began to develop a new approach to the teaching of acting. It was based on the simple and powerful idea that children would enjoy learning the craft of acting if it were presented as a series of games.

Spolin's son, Paul Sills, built on his mother's work and was one of the driving forces of improvisational theatre centered around the University of Chicago in the mid-1950's. Along with people like Del Close and David Shepherd, Sills created an ensemble of actors who developed a kind of "modern Commedia" which would appeal to the average man in the street. As with Theatresports and the original Commedia, the goal was to create theatre that was accessible to everyone.

The group that sprang from the work of Sills, Shepherd and Close, called The Compass, was extremely successful. It brought people to the theatre who in many cases had never gone before, and eventually led to the development of a company called Second City.

Through The Compass and Second City, Spolin's Theatre Games have gone on to influence an entire generation of improvisational performers.

what is improv?