Unexpected Productions is dedicated to the art and spirit of improvisation. We engage and enlighten artists and audiences with improvisational theater and spontaneous storytelling in all its forms. Our approach is professional, modern, innovative and intelligent, illuminating the humor and truth in our world.
MORE ABOUT THEATRE
Unexpected Productions started over 36 years ago in a Chinese restaurant in Pioneer Square, and evolved into a leader in improv in Seattle, the greater Pacific Northwest and the United States. Almost every improv troupe in the city has members that came from Unexpected Productions or were taught in its improv school.
UP's International Festival of Improv has brought improvisers from around the world to Seattle since 1994. After the festival, they bring back to their homes, styles and expertise that they learned at Unexpected Productions. Participating countries have included Spain, India, France, Japan, Slovenia, Germany, Mexico, Holland, Canada, Italy, Belgium, Australia, New Zealand, and India, This festival is so popular that other theaters in cities throughout the world have modeled their own after this Seattle design. Unexpected Productions has a global impact.
From its home at the Market Theater in Seattle’s Historic Pike Place Market, Unexpected Productions has created well over 300 original shows. In addition to creating original works, for over 30 years, Unexpected Productions’ has produced and presented Seattle TheatreSports, the first Theatresports in the United States, and Seattle’s longest running show.
Artistic Director, Randy Dixon has been with the company over 30 years. Dixon is a respected instructor and teaches improv all over the world. He is known for creating the “Seattle Style” of improv, combining the teachings of Del Close and Keith Johnston. He has written books and numerous articles on the art of improv and storytelling.
Unexpected Productions is notable for a nonprofit theater, for over 30 years they have operated in the black, almost exclusively from ticket sales and classes, with little funding from government or corporate support. While doing this, they are providing affordable shows that are unique for Seattle and audiences around the globe.
Unexpected Productions focuses on the art of storytelling in its work, taking suggestions from the audience and weaving them into stories, scenes and music. The audience is always part of the story.
For 3 decades, Unexpected Productions’ Improv School has taught new skills to tens of thousands of students. Now, improv troupes in cities across the country boast members educated by this unique institution.
Many corporations have hired Unexpected Productions to not only teach improv skills, but skills that can apply to everyday life; Active listening, verbal/non-verbal communication, creativity, acceptance of ideas, responding quicker in the moment, flexibility to change, problem-solving, and appropriate risk-taking. Multinational corporations based in Seattle, like Amazon, Microsoft, Boeing, and Starbucks have integrated Unexpected Productions’ training into their daily operations. Local groups like the Space Needle, Virginia Mason and Group Health have also integrated Unexpected Productions’ unique teachings.