Who We Are

The District Improv Company grew out of a desire for a unified presence for the District’s thriving improv scene. The organization’s board of directors is responsible for the management of the organization, including the annual District Improv Festival.

District Improv is a registered 501(c)3 nonprofit organization. The District Improv Festival is produced in alliance with Washington Improv Theater.

alex beard

Alex Beard
Director of Volunteer Services, joined DIF in 2017

Alex studied theatre as well as leadership and social change at Virginia Tech, where he founded VT’s first long form improv ensemble, Lolopolis Comedy Group (now Deep Fried Improv.) Upon graduation in 2012 Alex continued his improvisational theatre studies at iO and the Second City Conservatory in Chicago.

Alex has appeared in WIT’s Fighting Improv Smackdown Tournament (Rad Dadz, Gstaad Fiasco, & Jos. A. Banksy) as well as the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre’s Del Close Marathon, San Diego Improv Festival, and the now defunct Philly Improv Festival. #RIP

Alex joined District Improv in 2016 as the workshop coordinator and was invited to become a board member in 2017. He is driven by building community, which can be seen through his work and commitment to not only the adult DC Improv community, but to the future generations of artists as well. Alex teaches classes at WIT as well as coaches and teaches long form improv to high school students across the DC metro area.

By Day, Alex helps build community by empowering teens to make their voices heard in local government though activism, programming, and outreach.

sabahat chaudhary

Sabahat Chaudhary
Founding Member

Sabahat Chaudhary is co-owner of Magpie Cookshop, a DC-based business that designs and sells cute and sustainable kitchen textiles made in the United States.

She is a practicing attorney and a founding board member of District Improv. Sabahat brings her business and legal skills to District Improv and helps facilitate relationships with local sponsors and visiting performers.

Sabahat teaches at Washington Improv Theater and performs with WIT ensemble Season Six and independent team Press Play.

Caroline Chen
Webmaster, joined DIF in March 2017

Caroline forced herself out of her mold when she took an introductory improv class at Washington Improv Theater in 2012. Her life has been for the better, as she has been able to interact with so many creative and supportive individuals.  She now teaches at WIT and loves passing on the gift of improv to students. Caroline has performed with former WIT Harold team People Like Us and indie troupes Asian Moms and Until One Day. She currently plays with indie troupes Sweater Kittens and Darlene & Joy.

By day, Caroline furiously studies web development as she prepares for a career change (she’s still sort of a forensic DNA analyst).

sean paul ellis

Sean Paul Ellis
Executive Board Chair, founding member

Sean started taking classes with Washington Improv Theater in 2008 and now performs with the ensemble troupe Nox!.

He has been lucky to be around smart and funny people during his tenure with WIT.

His goal with DIF is to further promote the awesome talent in DC and give this community an opportunity to socialize with improv communities from across the country.

By day Sean works in IT.

jeff hughes

Jeff Hughes
Board Member

In 2010, Jeff Hughes turned 40.  Some guys buy themselves a sportscar at that age; Jeff started taking improv classes.  Since then, he has trained with instructors from the DC Improv, Washington Improv Theater, PhIT, Magnet, Annoyance, Second City, and Upright Citizens Brigade theaters.  Jeff is a founding member independent teams Small Town, Jungle Fever, Allergic To Winter, and Pony! Poni! Pone! He has also performed with Baltimore Improv Group’s troupe Minority Re’port. Jeff is an independent producer of comedy shows, including the Happy Buddha Show which has featured nationally reknowned performers such as ShawnMikael(s), Asaf Ronen, The Amie and Kristen/Kristen and Amie Show, Rick Andrews, and Trike.

jess lee

Jess Lee
Communications Human, joined DIF in March 2017

2010, Portland, Oregon —Jess took an improv class and realized that improv is the best possible thing that she could do with her time on earth.  She trained at The Brody Theater and The Liberators Training Center in Portland, before moving into performance in the Brody Ensemble (shows include: Two Houses, Micetro, Here’s the Thing, BAM!, Diabolical Experiments) and indie troupes: Holy Trinity, Lovebirds, ADMINISTRATION, & Vestivus.She took a detour to Spokane, WA and The Blue Door Theater before landing in Washington DC, the summer of 2016. She teaches, coaches, and performs improv.  It’s still the best thing she could with her time.

By day Jess helps teams work better, faster, and stronger by using the skills of improv theater.

dan miller

Dan Miller
Board Member, founding member

A founding board member of District Improv, Dan has performed with the Washington Improv Theater company ensemble King Bee, independent team Sistine Robot, and the trio Beverly Crusher (winners of WIT’s 2016 Fighting Improv Smackdown Tournament). He created and directed WIT’s romantic comedy Improv Actually and assistant directed/performed in WIT’s dark murder mystery Citizens’ Watch. He is an experienced teacher, coach, and corporate trainer having conducted workshops for organizations like Goodwill International, Lidl, and Capital One. He is still overwhelmingly nervous before every show.

By day Dan runs marketing, communications, and development for Washington Improv Theater.

rob miller

Rob Miller
Festival Executioner, joined DIF in June 2016

Rob started improv in college and has performed with Indianapolis troupes Buddy Buddy and IndyProv as currently performs with WIT Ensembles King Bee and Improv Actually as well as indie teams Jos. A. Banksy and Big Boy Nap Time.

Rob also teaches character class for Washington Improv Theater. Rob joined the board in an effort to increase awareness of improv on a national scale!

By day, Rob helps to transition new students and parents to George Mason University and prepare them for what college has to offer.

jordana mishory

Jordana Mishory
Board Member

Jordana Mishory is managing editor of Inside the Pentagon, a weekly newsletter that covers Defense Department policy. Jordana brings her keen eye for detail and love of list making to District Improv.

An instructor and performer with Washington Improv Theater since April 2013, Jordana has taught almost every level of the curriculum and performed with Harold teams People Like Us, Fisticuffs and Thank You For Sharing. Jordana also helps coordinate WIT’s annual festival of experimental and innovative improv, Improvapalooza. She performs regularly with her independent team/loves of her life, Cake Bagel, and helped found DC’s all-female super group Sweater Kittens.

heather marie vitale

Heather Marie Vitale
Social Media Manager, joined DIF in March 2017

Heather Marie started improv in high school because she was one of the funny ones and loved Who’s Line. She took it up again after grad school, and completed the WIT curriculum in November 2016.  She founded indie darling Rancy Neagan and the Bechdelprov Project, which both feature all-female casts.

Heather Marie adores the supportive and loving nature of the DC community, and is delighted to share that love with DIF through social media!

By day Heather Marie brings levity and Hall & Oates to the spooky halls of the Pentagon.

john windmueller

John Windmueller
Director of Workshops, joined DIF in January 2013

John has over a decade of experience performing, teaching, and directing improv. He currently teaches with both Washington Improv Theater and the Baltimore Improv Group and performs with the troupes King Bee, Lekker, Local Spot, Flannel Club, and Ways and Means. John attends and leads workshops in festivals across the US and joined District Improv to support DC having the annual festival it so richly deserves.

By day, John directs WIT@Work, the applied improv and corporate training branch of Washington Improv Theater. He holds a Ph.D. in Conflict Analysis & Resolution and uses improv to help organizations and teams better collaborate, communicate, and innovate together.

 

Former Board Members

Matt Berman, Amelia Vogel, Brianna Lux