Telling Stories Out of School
(a two-session master class)
with Mike Birbiglia and Seth Barrish
Offered in partnership with The Barrow Group
December 4, 2019 • December 18, 2019

In the first, daylong session of this master class, Mike Birbiglia and Seth Barrish will explain the basic principles of story structure and performance. Following this session, participants will write short, original stories about their lives as teachers, which they will then perform in a workshop setting during the second, shorter, evening session.

Mike Birbiglia is a comedian, storyteller, director, and actor who has performed in front of audiences worldwide, from the Sydney Opera House to Carnegie Hall. His shows My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend and Thank God for Jokes were both filmed for Netflix. His most recent show, The New One, ran for ninety-nine performances on Broadway at the Cort Theatre. Mike wrote, directed, and starred in the films Sleepwalk with Me and Don’t Think Twice. His book, Sleepwalk with Me and Other Painfully True Stories, was a New York Times bestseller and a finalist for the Thurber Prize for American Humor. As an actor, Mike has appeared on Inside Amy Schumer, Girls, and Broad City, as well as in the films Trainwreck, The Fault in Our Stars, and Popstar: Never Stop Never Stopping. He plays the roles of Danny Pearson on Orange Is the New Black and Oscar Langstraat on Billions. He is a contributor to This American Life. In 2017, Mike was honored with the Kurt Vonnegut Humor Award.

Seth Barrish has been a professional acting coach and teacher for more than three decades. An award-winning actor, director, and artistic director, Barrish has spent years honing and sharing techniques to maximize spontaneity and bring performances to life. In 1986 he cofounded The Barrow Group, a company that has left an indelible mark on the New York theater scene, garnering accolades and praise for nurturing a high level of acting integrity. He has worked with, among others, Anne Hathaway, Mike Birbiglia, Tony Hale, and Michael Stahl David.









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Photos by Pat Swain.






“It was transformative, interactive and inspiring. I was able to go back to my students the next day and talk about storytelling, tell a story, and help them look at stories in a different way.”
Daria Pennington, Bronx Envision Academy


Master Class Fellows