The Living Newspaper by David Shepherd

 A constant in David Shepherd’s improv career was periodically revisiting his groundbreaking format, COMPASS (a “people’s theatre,” co-created with Paul Sills in 1955) and attempting to update it with the collaboration of improvisers who were in his orbit at that time. David continued conducting COMPASS workshops in New York, Los Angeles, Toronto, Ottawa, Boston, St.…

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Evolution of an Online Course by Michael Golding

“Some of my students are wearing masks in class, because trying to remember names when you’re in your sixties isn’t challenging enough.”  March 6, 2020 journal entry. I am a faculty member at Compton College in Los Angeles where I teach Theatre Appreciation to college and high school students. Taught primarily through theatre games, the…

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MEET THE REAL VALENTINE BY DAVID SHEPHERD

David Shepherd, the visionary behind Compass (forerunner of Second City), Improv Olympics and Canadian Improv Games, celebrated Valentine’s Day in 2004 by improvising a scenario with an invited group in Hadley, MA,  based on the real story of St. Valentine; the struggle for individuality against the interests of the Empire. David explored other “holy days”…

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David Shepherd's Journals by Michael Golding

David Shepherd (October 10, 1924 – December 17, 2018) the co-founder of Playwrights Theatre Club, Compass (forerunner of Second City), the Improv Olympics and Canadian Improv Games, left behind a library of personal journals. David was diligent about making daily entries, a practice he started at thirteen, inspired by his father William Edgar Shepherd, an…

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David Shepherd and the ImprovBoston Festival by Michael Golding

My close friend and mentor for 46 years, David Shepherd, the father of improvisation, passed away on December 17, 2018. He was 94 years old. With Paul Sills, David created Compass (1955), the first professional improv cabaret in North America and forerunner of Second City (1959). With Howard Jerome, David created the Improv Olympics (1972)…

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