Meet the Teacher: Kendon Lacy

Meet the Teacher: Kendon Lacy



In a new series of blogs, we are going to meet the teachers at OKC Improv! First up, he's OKC Improv's Program Director; you've seen him on stage in such groups as BitSing, After Hours, Kyle & Kendon, The Squeaky Clean Improv Show, and much more. He has been teaching Level 1 Improv & Musical Improv at OKC Improv for over four years, and he happens to be one of my best friends -- it's Kendon Lacy everybody!

 
How long have you been improvising?
Since 2012...I think? I was young, silly, dumb and having fun. Now I’m older, silly, dumb and having fun. It’s interesting because my anniversary falls at the first of January which makes keeping up with anniversary so easy.
 
How did you get involved in OKC Improv?
A guy named Tim Huckeby gets that credit. He’d been asking me to do some improv. At the time, I was antisocial though I hated that word. I just didn’t like hanging out for no reason. “What are we going to do at this party? Just stand around and talk? No thanks.” Little did I know that was antisocial. I was doing stand up comedy though and that was going really great. I was a finalist for the Loony Bin funniest person competition. Then I saw the movie Yes Man (with Jim Carey). For fear of trolls, I never told anyone but I decided to start saying yes to things in my life in difficult things. Then Tim came back and told me that he REALLY thinks I should be doing improv and invited me to a class. Going with my new “Yes” motto (Not realizing that’s the foundation of improv) I told him yes, I’ll go to a class. I was late to the first class because I spent so much time contemplating if I could justify not going to the class and backing out. I wasn’t scared just the antisocial was kicking back in. To make an already long story shorter, improv has had my life ever since that first class. 
 
What you love most about improv?
I love making people laugh. I love performing as an actor. But you can’t beat the community. The performances bring you to improv. The community keeps you around and makes you become invested in improv. I’ve met my best friend through improv and that’s simply priceless. So yes, a community is definitely at the top of my list. 
 
What are some of your guiding philosophies in teaching improv?
It’s got to be fun, it’s got be energetic, it’s got to be encouraging, it’s got to be a safe space and it’s got to be challenging. Those 2-hour classes need to feel like a 2-hour party! Once you’ve developed fun and safe space, then you can challenge people to do things they never thought they could do.
 

 

 Pictured: Kendon in a performance with Jaclyn Cosgrove, Kyle Gossett, and Jeanette Schreiber
 Credit: Mauricio del Errico
 
Any highlights in teaching at OKC Improv?
I’ve seen people with crippling anxiety back out their shell (which is always a wonderful thing to see). One of my top highlights is watching students I’ve taught flourish and start there own troupes and some of them becoming teachers themselves or even moving out of state for bigger and better opportunities. I’ve always thought that great leaders develop other great leaders. So when I look back at some of those teachers doing great things it’s definitely a highlight and confirmation that I’m doing something right. 
 
What do you think people get most out of improv classes that you’ve seen?
Simply put, they get the permission to have fun, they get the permission to fail (not get everything perfect) and most importantly they get the permission to have fun (yes I know I send that twice). 
 
Proudest Teaching Moment…
There was a time a student that told me about a time at her job. She worked for EMSA I believe. The people on her job at the time never really took her seriously which made her not very confident in her suggestion giving in routes to take for an emergency etc. She came back to class one day and said “I heard you in my ear saying ‘choose to know’ and that I’m a ‘rockstar’ so I confidently told them a better route and they listened to me. That moment where people apply what I’ve taught just makes me smile. 
 
If someone was considering taking an improv class, what would you tell them?
You won’t regret it and it will change your life for the better. 
 
 
You can see Kendon Lacy on stage in many performances at OKC Improv, Friday and Saturday Nights at OKC Improv. Click here to get tickets. 
 
If you are interested in learning more about our classes, click here. 

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