The Canadian Improv Games (CIG) is a national charity dedicated to enriching the lives of youth through improvisational theatre programs that promotes invaluable skills including Positivity, Communication, Leadership, Commitment and Teamwork through a variety of annually programmed workshops, training sessions and performance opportunities.
The Canadian Improv Games is a loving competition between teams of high school students trained to perform spontaneous, improvised scenes. Thousands of students in hundreds of high schools across Canada play in the CIG every year. Teams compete in Regional Tournaments, all in hopes to attend the week-long National Tournament & Festival in Ottawa. In addition to our competitions, the CIG offers workshops, training, and week-long summer camps throughout the year.
From its humble beginning as an educational adventure into a new style of theatre learning, The Canadian Improv Games got its start in Ottawa in 1977.
The Canadian Improv Games were created by Howard Jerome and Jamie “Willie” Wyllie based on a concept (The Improv Olympics) created by David Shepherd and Howard Jerome. Willie and his improv team Stage Fright produced the first matches in 1977 continuing into the early 80s. By the 1990s with the efforts of Willie and Johnson Moretti, the games had exploded into a national phenomenon, so popular they were even given hour long live coverage on YTV
Today, CIG is home to one of the largest and most geographically dispersed theatre festivals in Canada with 14 regional programs and over 100,000 alumni participants. Each year students gain access, through their high school, to a variety of immersive workshops, training sessions and performance opportunities that are formatted to build and promote invaluable skills.
Learn more about our regional programs, summer camps, festivals and other special programs by visiting the rest of our website!
Over the years a number of notable Canadian performers have got their start on the CIG stage including Sandra Oh, Seth Rogan, Nathan Fielder, Alanis Morissette, and Tatiana Maslany.
For more information on the Canadian Improv Games, contact our National Office.