The Free Association
"[The FA] REALLY INSPIRED ME TO COME TO LONDON" -BILLY MERRIT (UCB, IMPROV LEGEND)

HAROLD TEAMS

SWEET FANNY ADAMS


Jim Archer

Jim trained in Improv at both Monkey Toast and the FA and is a founding member of smash-hit, live and kicking, CD:UK improv groupThe Petting Zoo. A comedy writer and director by trade, Jim’s short films have been shown around the world leading to him selling out and directing a series of commercials for Virgin Holidays.

Rhys Collier

In addition to Sweet Fanny Adams Rhys is a founder member of long-form improv troupe Do Not Adjust Your Stage, who he has had the pleasure of performing with at the Natural History Museum, as well as improv festivals in New York, Barcelona, Amsterdam and Dublin. Rhys has trained in long-form improv with Lyndsay Hailey (iO), Mark Beltzman (iO, Second City) and David Shore (Second City) among many other leading improvisers on both sides of the Atlantic. He also performs solo-improv as Powerhouse.

Graham Dickson

Graham has been improvising for over 9 years. He began training at the renowned UCB Theatre in New York. He has also studied under David Shore in London. He is a founding member of the award-winning Austentatious, and co-founder of The Free Association. Graham also performs with Monkey Toast, Grand Theft Impro, and No Strings. He has taught improv at the International Acting Academy and The School of Comedy and is also an improv coach. When not improvising, Graham is an actor and writer.

Michael Orton-Toliver

Mike’s improvisational roots go back to 1997 in Los Angeles with Comedy Sportz. Mike is most proud of co-founding Ultimate Improv (The Space) and working in Amsterdam for the world famous Boom Chicago Theatre. He’s also performed for Second City, but now lives in London and can be seen playing with The Free Association, The Bishop, and GTI. Not to mention his two man, long form show with Jim Woods. When he’s not performing, Mike teaches improv and coaches several teams in London. He is also the Head Corporate writer at Boom Chicago.

Naomi Petersen

Naomi is an actor, comedian, writer and singer.  Her stage credits include Angus Thongs and Even More Snogging (West Yorkshire Playhouse), The Sorcerer's Apprentice (The Ambassadors Theatre), Chavs (Lyric Hammersmith), 10x10x10 (Pleasance), The Witches of Eastwick (Watermill) and Tender Loving Care (New Theatre Royal).  Television and Film credits include Drifters (E4), Pop Sludge (4Music), Jitterman (Raedar Ltd) and At First Sight (Rankin Film Productions). In 2016 she took her debut one woman comedy show ‘I Am Telling You I’m Not Going!’ to The Edinburgh Festival Fringe. She trained with The Free Association where she now teaches and performs. She has also guested with Chortle award-winning Austentatious and Grand Theft Impro.

Briony Redman

Briony is a writer & actor who started improvising with The EUTC Improverts. She is a core cast member of The Bishop and Monkey Toast UK and has guested with Grand Theft Impro and the Chortle award-winning Austentatious. Briony is in a double act, Surname & Surname (“articulate sense of mischief,” The Times). She has previously written for BBC Radio 4 and been shortlisted for iFeatures, the BAFTA Rocliffe New Writing Forum at the NYTV Festival and the Red Planet Picture Prize.

Liz KINGSMAN

Liz is an actor and comedian. She played series regular Ruby on Channel 4 topical comedy Ballot Monkeys and the follow up series Power Monkeys, and Andy in semi-improvised sitcom Borderline. She is one third of comedy group Massive Dad, who wrote and performed on ITV2 sketch show @Elevenish, BBC Radio 4 Fresh From The Fringe and Sketchorama.  Liz trained in improvisation with Monkey Toast and The FA, and performs with improv group The Petting Zoo.

KATIA KVINGE

Katia is a Scottish BAFTA Nominated actor, comedian, and impressionist (As seen on BBC, MTV & Comedy Central) She first tried Improv with ‘The Improverts' whilst at Edinburgh University and then went on to train in Acting & Clown at Gaulier before going on to train & perform Improv at the Second City, Groundlings & UCB Theatre Los Angeles. She has performed at the Edinburgh Fringe between 2009-16 in sketch shows with the Edinburgh revue and more recently in her solo shows ‘Karacters', '140 Karakters' and ‘Squirrel’. Featuring in Vanity Fair and Edinburgh Festivals Magazine as 'One to watch' 

 

THE WILSONS


KATHARINE BENNETT-FOX

Katharine is an actress who has recently discovered the joys of improvisation. Having studied with The Free Association & Monkey Toast she’s very excited to be part of ‘The Wilsons’. She’s appeared in ITV2’s supernatural drama ‘Switch’ & filmed with Oscar Winning director Costa-Gavras on ‘Le Capital’. She also played the lead in Bafta Winner Daniel M. Smith’s shortlisted Virgin Media Short ‘The Best Medicine’ and appeared in both series of Foster’s Comedy Award winner Adam Riches’ BBC4 radio show. She can be seen in the Blaine Brothers’ feature ‘Nina Forever’ later this year.

CHRIS GAU

Chris Gau is a comedy writer & improviser from London. In addition to co-creating and writing Borderline (Channel 5) and The Literary Adventures of Mr Brown (BBC Radio 4), Chris has writing several short films: “Bin Day” made the Official Selection at the LA Comedy Shorts and “Screen Grab” was shortlisted for the BAFTA sponsored Reed Short Film Competition.  When not writing, Chris performs at the Free Association Theatre in London. 

SOPHIA BROIDO

Sophia trained in theatre and comedy with Philippe Gaulier and has worked as an actor, both in the UK and internationally. She has collaborated with and been mentored by companies such as Punchdrunk and Complicite, and has worked in devising and performing for numerous projects that use improvisation in theatre, film, and live performance. She discovered long form more recently, training with Monkey Toast and The Free Association, before becoming a member of The Wilsons.

SHAUN LOWTHIAN

Shaun is an improviser, writer and actor. He performs regularly in London with Do Not Adjust Your Stage (DNAYS) and two-man act The Homunculus, with international appearances in New York, Paris, Barcelona, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, and Dublinin recent years. DNAYS’ show The Wunderkammer plays in residency at the Natural History Museum. Shaun has trained in long-form improv in the UK and USA with the UCB, Second City, iO, TJ & Dave, Monkey Toast and Free Association. He appeared in EpicLloyd’s globally interactive improv web series Off The Top, and co-hosts character comedy podcast Fact Up. Shaun's writing has featured on BBC Radio 4.

JON BROKE

Jonathan began performing improvised comedy as a part of Underbelly Funk, the first Underbelly House improv team at the Edinburgh Festival in 2000. He then trained as an actor in the USA and Russia at The American Repertory Theatre and Moscow Art School.  As an actor he’s played at The Globe and performed in numerous plays both in London and the USA.  More recently he’s made films, both scripted and improvised, starring in the 2014 improvised feature United We Fall. As a producer he has been involved with the award winning short film, David’s fine and currently nominated Not Sophie’s Choice.  Jonathan currently improvises with (and teaches for) The Free Association in London, performing regularly with his team, The Wilsons. He recently took his bow with Improv superstars Austentatious at the York Fringe this summer.

SHAMUS MAXWELL

Shamus is a member of The Wilsons, co-founder of creepy improv duo Demons To Some and teaches Level 2 at the FA. Before the FA was a twinkle in Graham Dickson's eye he tore up the London improv scene as a member of the legendary (to their members) So This Is Earth and Bleak Mouse. Shamus has been a character comedian/clown, and will be again, but loves improv best of all. He is also a writer and lo-fi film-maker and many of his films and collaborations can be found online at vimeo.com

IAN THOMAS DAY

Ian moved to London from Canada in the winter of 2013.  The fact that he is from Canada is probably the first thing he will tell you if you ever meet.  The second thing he might bring up is that he’s been performing in a variety of ways for many years but only been doing this improv thing for two.  Upon getting off stage after his first Harold show he realized he probably should have started doing it 10 years ago cause he loves it. This would be the third thing he might tell you. The fourth thing Ian might tell you is to watch the film Wet Hot American Summer, if only just for the scene where Christopher Meloni talks to a can of mixed vegetables voiced by Jon Benjamin.

 

 


The CARTEL

AMANDA FARLEY

Amanda is an actor, writer, and improviser in London. She went to University College Dublin and Kings College, London. She is a performer with the FA Harold team The Cartel and she is very excited about that. As a writer she has had work performed at RADA and is part of the sketch collective Wet Lettice which has had two sellout runs at the Hen and Chicken in Islington. She also performs improv all around the city with her teams The Aphabetties, Wolf Attorney and Shoes & Socks.

LOLA-ROSE MAXWELL

Lola-Rose can be heard narrating children's audiobooks, as various characters on BBC Radio 4's The adventures of Mr Brown and The Dawson Brother's Sketch Showcase, guesting on hilarious podcasts including Magic Robot and FACT Up and most importantly, a cassette tape of a radio show she made when she was 7. The features on this radio show include "guess that sound" (spoiler alert, its her knocking on a wall). She can be seen and heard performing and MC-ing character stand up throughout London's alternative comedy nights including Lost Cabaret and Character Assassination. But what Lola-Rose really loves best is improvising live comedy with The Petting Zoo and The Free Association's house team The Cartel. Writing credits include Mariah Carey's "All I want For Christmas is You.

ALEX HOLLAND 

Alex Holland is a writer, comedian and improviser. He has a 2009 Royal Television Society Award for the comedy sketch film ‘Best Friends That Love Each Other’ which he co-wrote and performed whilst at University, has trained with Monkey Toast improv company and the FA, and is a co-founder of improv troupe The Petting Zoo.

JEZ SCHARF

Yep, yep, You know.

FREYA SLIPPER 

Freya started improvising with and directed the EUTC Improverts. She has trained with Monkey Toast and the FA and has guested with the Monkey Toast Players.  She has written for CBBC’s Dick and Dom’s Funny Business and was in award winning double act ‘Thankless Child’.

DAVID ELMS

David won the Musical Comedy Awards in 2014, and his short film SWAG won Best Foreign Short at The LA Indie Film Festival in 2015. He has been well received at the Fringe with his three solo shows, and for his roles in cult hits MR SWALLOW – HOUDINI, MR SWALLOW – DRACULA, and ADAM RICHES IS COACH COACH. He just made his TV acting debut as lovable regular Clive in Channel 5 sitcom BORDERLINE, which was recently commissioned for a second series. He started improvising at university as part of short-form group 'The Improverts', and trained in long-form at the FA.

CHARLIE KEMP

Charlie Kemp studied at the Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art in 1998, He graduated in 2001, and got a lead role in the Sky One comedy series ‘Is Harry on The Boat’. He left after two series and soon after was cast as Max King in ‘Emmerdale’. He then appeared in the two final feature length episodes of ‘Judge John Deed’ on the BBC. He has also appeared in Casualty, Holby City, The Bill, Doctors, Jo Le Grand, with Jean Reno and An Adventure in Time and Space. He has co-written and produced the comedy pilot This Week’s This Show and co-written and produced an Edinburgh show called ‘The Many Minds of Dr Jackson’. He has appeared in various character comedy shows in London and is a member of Whose Army, a Monkeytoast house team.

KAYLEIGH LLEWELLYN

Kayleigh is a screenwriter and performer from Wales. She has studied improv with The Free Association, Monkey Toast, UCB, The Groundlings and iO. As well as playing with The Cartel and Ladies of FA County, she is also a founding member of The Committee. 

Kayleigh is a Broadcast Hot Shot 2016 and one of six filmmakers selected for the 2016 BFI Flare Mentorship Programme. She was also the recipient of the BAFTA Rocliffe New Comedy Award 2012.

Kayleigh writes across TV and Film, her credits include: CASUALTY (BBC 1), HOSPITAL PEOPLE (BBC 1) and STELLA (Sky1).

Kayleigh is also writing and performing in online comedy sketches for PYPO, developed by Stephanie Laing (exec-producer of VEEP and HBO's DIVORCE). One of her sketches, Asking For It, is a collaboration with The White House for President Obama's It's On Us campaign, an initiative to end campus sexual assault.

 

MY BROTHER, JOSE

LORNA SHAW

Lorna is one half of comedy duo, That Pair, who have been heard on Radio 4 in Sketchorama and Expenses Only. They were Funny Women Awards finalists 2012 and their show Never Liked Her Anyway transferred to the Soho Theatre in 2014. Lorna's TV and Radio credits include 'The Midnight Beast', E4, BBC Comedy Feeds 'Life Guru' and 'Newsjack' on BBC Radio 4. She recently played Nina in a touring production of The Seagull and has performed in many a children’s production as an actor-musician. You can also catch her on the comedy scene performing stand-up and character comedy in and around London.

SCOTT OSWALD

Scott has taken improv classes with The Free Association, Monkey Toast and Hoopla. As well as being part of the FA family, he is also a member of the improv group Jack Left Town, where they tell the story of the greatest band ever imagined. 

TAMAR BROADBENT

Tamar is a comedian, actress, writer, singer and award-winning songwriter. She has toured her musical comedy solo shows around the UK, to Europe and Australia, and performs regularly on the comedy circuit. She was a finalist in the Amused Moose Laugh Off and Funny Women Awards 2015 and appeared on BBC Radio 4’s Fresh From the Fringe. She also won the Stiles & Drewe Best New Song Award 2014, the most prestigious competition in the UK for new musical theatre writers, and has two musicals in development. Tamar began improvising in 2015, after reading Amy Poehler’s autobiography. She is FA trained and loves improv loads and wishes we could do it the whole time.

ALEX MORRIS

Alex is a writer and improviser studying at Kings College London. In his first year, the Caucasian male won 'Best Writing' at the 2016 London Student Drama Festival for his satirical play 'Meritocracy'. Even when battling a mild allergy to dust,  Alex performed at the Edinburgh Fringe with the Kings improv troupe, Running a Mock. 5ft10 Morris, also hosts a podcast, 'Young and Naive with Alex Morris' where he interviews people in comedy. The blue-eyed Taurus is very grateful to be involved with the FA and hopes not to get fired.

CLARE COUCHMAN

Clare works in TV development and started training with The Free Association and Monkey Toast last year after reading Amy Poehler’s book, which makes improv sound really fun and nice. And it is! Although obviously completely terrifying. This is the first kind of performance Clare has ever done except for when she played Titania in A Midsummer Night’s Dream in Year 8. Her mum said she was magical and there were no other reviewers in so we'll have to take her word for it.

NICK EVERRITT

Nick has trained in improv first with Hoopla and then with The Free Association. He performs sketch and improvised comedy with The Pretty Faces, and is a new and aspiring stand-up comedian. He is also an actuary, so feel free to grab him if you’re interested in discussing non-life insurance liabilities.

KERRY GILBERT

Kerry started out in comedy in the imaginatively-named sketch duo Kerry and Kelly. After Kelly quit to become a BAFTA nominated TV comedy producer, Kerry carried on, performing solo shows 'Kerry Gilbert Gives Love a Bad Name' and 'Kerry Gilbert Triumphs' in caves at the Edinburgh Fringe. Kerry has had television roles in the BBC shows 'Tittybangbang', 'Life of Riley', and 'Comedy Shuffle'; and wrote and performed series regular Pauline The Dinnerlady, with a stick-on hairy mole, in kids’ comedy show 'Dick and Dom’s Funny Business'. 

Kerry’s biggest fan (literally) is WWE wrestling legend Mick Foley (AKA Mankind, Dude Love, and Cactus Jack). THIS IS A FACT. Kerry has trained in long-form improvisation with Monkey Toast and The FA, and also performs with improv group Mighty Demon.

STEVE VIOLICH

Steve is an improviser, comedian and animal whisperer (primarily foxes and squirrels). He left New Zealand due to its lack of friendly woodland creatures, but not before improvising with professional troupe the Court Jesters. In the UK he has improvised with short form troupe Fat Kitten, performed improv and standup at the Edinburgh Fringe, and studied long form with the Free Association and Monkey Toast. Steve is currently fighting to reclaim the domain foxnews.com.

 

THE 838

Simon Lukacs


Simon Lukacs has been improvising for 4 years and has studied with The Spontaneity Shop, Monkey Toast and The Free Association.  Outside of the FA, he is part of the improv groups The Petting Zoo, Upstairs Downton and Equine Extravaganza.  He has also trained in clowning under Phil Burgers, aka Doctor Brown. He runs the critically acclaimed Gits and Shiggles Comedy night and co-hosts the Time Out Critic’s Choice show Character Assassination.

Writing credits include the short film Bethlehem Booking Hotline for ITN. Simon also has a background in immersive theatre, appearing in The Apocalypse Game Show and the Forked Path shows The Tomb of Nobody and The Butcher of Baker Street Simon can also be found hosting The Eclectic Playlist and Gits and Shiggles on Wandsworth Radio


Ivan Gonzalez

Ivan is one half of the globe-trotting sketch double act and all-round legends 'Max & Ivan'. With Max he has won the Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award Panel Prize and has been nominated for the Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award Best Show along with the Barry Award for Most Outstanding Show at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival. He appears as a mainly silent character in BBC Two's W1A and as a non-silent character in BBC Radio 4's Casebook of Max and Ivan. He is also the co-founder of The Free Association and has a blind cat called Edgar.

Nathalie Antonia

Nathalie is a comedy writer/actress from Bognor Regis. She spent several years in LA performing with UCB & IO indie teams "Dix & Nat" & "Marvin Gaye & Chardonnay", and was the co-founder/host of Hollywood's two-prov night "Tragedy Improv". Nat (that's right, lets get comfy) won the Hollyshorts audience choice award for her short film "Gwyndor" (a film she co-wrote/produced and starred in). Nat's last short "Becca & Molly" had some drunk fun at the New York/Toronto/Las Vegas and LA shorts Fest. 

While in LA she wrote and starred in a couple of (oscar worthy?) sketches that ended up on Funny Or Die. She also worked on FOX'S My Name Is Earl, EA's Command & Conquer and Girl number one, two, and three in some shady short that was filmed in a bush. When she's not performing she's on the lookout for dolphins. #saynotoseaworld

Freddie Sandilands

Freddie trained in improv at both Monkey Toast and the FA and is a founding member of improv group The Petting Zoo. A writer and comic performer, he has performed on the London stand up circuit and this year will see him take his first character comedy show to the Edinburgh fringe.  

TOM LEVINGE

Tom is a TV producer, writer and director. He's made 3 series of shorts for Channel 4 and directed pilots for NBC and the BBC. Improv-wise Tom trained with Monkey Toast and the FA and can also be found improvising in the Monkey Toast house team The Dreamboats.

Clare Plested

Clare is an actor, writer and comedian. For over 12 years Clare wrote, toured and performed as one half of ‘Plested and Brown’ (they got pretty big in South Korea and Armenia). Clare trained in long-form improv with the FA and considers herself to be ‘pure FA blood’. She’s currently developing a character comedy show called ‘Flock Up’ for the Edinburgh Fringe 2016.  Please buy a ticket as she has a daughter to support.


Alison Thea-Skot

Alison is a critically acclaimed actress, comedian and writer. She has produced several smash hit, 5-star, solo character comedy Edinburgh Fringe Shows; Some Like It Thea-Skot & It’s Thea-Skot in Here (So Take Off All Your Clothes). Alison trained with Monkey Toast and The FA and also improvises with Séance Fiction. You can catch her on several BBC Radio 4 comedy sketch shows.


Shivani Thussu

Shivani Thussu is sometimes really kind. She has trained at the Upright Citizen’s Brigade theatre in New York and done learning with the ENO, Punchdrunk, Complicite, Ecole Philipppe Gaulier and the Schaubühne theatre in Berlin. She has performed at the Barbican, Soho Theatre and the Roundhouse in London, Shakespeare & Company in Paris and in a tiny room at the Lincoln Center in New York.