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Published on September 7th, 2011 | by Sharilyn Johnson

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Gym, Tan, Clap Focus

As a happy survivor of the level 1 intensive at the UCB Theatre in New York, I can say from experience that your first day in class can be rather daunting. You’re not really sure what to expect.

It’s probably a safe bet that nobody in this week’s new batch of students expected one of their classmates to be Jersey Shore castmember Vinny Guadagnino.

Seems it’s going well for him, judging by his tweet: Day 1 of improv classes was dope , these tools can help with many areas of life .

Right he is! Though one has to wonder how strange this experience must be for his classmates. He’s not the most notable celeb to show up at a UCB class (Heather Graham wins that category for her stint at the LA training centre), but it must be a challenge for a new improvisor to initiate a scene with a guy who everyone has such strong preconceived notions about.

Now that the news has been spread to his 1.8 million Twitter followers, curiosity is going to get the best of people, and it’s inevitable that there will be a pretty good-sized crowd for the class’s grad show (Edit: this show is apparantly October 1st at 4pm, not Sept 18 as previously reported). But if you go, don’t go for the sake of gawking and judging. Go to be supportive of this group doing something very difficult, and very scary.


About the Author

is the author of the book Bears & Balls: The Colbert Report A-Z. Called "one of the city’s most discriminating comedy critics” by NOW Magazine, Sharilyn has been covering comedy for longer than she cares to admit. She served as the comedy reporter for Winnipeg's Uptown Magazine for five years, and was the host of the radio show Laugh Tracks for three seasons. Her work has also appeared in the Toronto Star, the Winnipeg Free Press, The Apiary, and on CBC Radio's national comedy programs LOL and Definitely Not the Opera.



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