Week 2: Laugh At Leeds: Now Laugh At The World (ONLINE COURSE)
The Bill Murray : Training, Islington, United Kingdom
As well as putting on comedy gigs and appearing on stages myself, I've been running stand-up and improv courses in Leeds for over seven years. We've had over 500 people pass through our doors during that time. Read what some of them said below: please DO read down that far. They're some of my proudest achievements.
Back in March, we were mid-way through a course intake when coronavirus hit. All public gatherings cancelled. So, I took some time to get good at teaching in this new way, and we took the class online.
"Thanks for making Zoom meetings I actually looked forward to."
- Rosie, Online Course
"Being able to get out of my comfort zone in the comfort of my own home was the highlight of my week."
- Martin, Online Course
It is so much fun, and we're doing it all over again: the next rounds are:
Monday 4th January (runs 'til 8th February)
Monday 22nd February ('til 29th March)
Fancy joining us?
This is not a stand-up comedy course.
Repeat: this is not a stand-up comedy course.
The online course mixes the best parts of the stand-up and improv courses—the freedom to fail, the supportive space and the games— and takes the pressure of a live performance off.
You'll join a group of like-minded people and a crack team of facilitators, every week for a couple of hours of play, games and writing. You'll laugh, a lot. There'll be homework, but nothing taxing. We deliberately keep numbers low.
We use a stealthy series of exercises, designed by a stand-up with over 25 years experience, based on seeing everything around you in new ways. You'll find inspiration, flex your creative muscles and grow confidence.
You'll surprise yourself.
You have all the tools you need: your mind and what's around you.
We won't teach you to be funny, but you'll come away having made yourself (and complete strangers) laugh. I guarantee it.
But, none of it will feel like learning or hard work. All of that stuff happens in the background. We'll just be playing games.
In six weeks, you'll have made new friends, and armed yourself with a toolbox of creative skills. It's tools, not rules.
This is the perfect time for play.
All you need is a notebook and pen, Zoom, and yourself.
The next rounds starts on Monday 4th January (runs 'til 8th February) and the one after, 22nd February ('til 29th March).
We meet on Monday evenings at 6pm for about 2hrs.
It costs £180, so £30 a week.
I limit each course to 12 people. Payment secures your place.
My physical courses sold out in advance, with people travelling to Leeds for as far afield as North Wales, Cumbria and the Lincolnshire coast, and online my catchment area is the entire globe.
If you're aboard, make a payment of £180.00 to my Nationwide account, I'll get you signed up.
Nationwide 07-04-36 25744917. Should it need my actual name, it's Paul White.
Not sure whether this is for you? Read what other people say about the course, below. Or ask me anything. Well, almost anything.
Feedback for Laugh at Leeds:
"The course was lots of fun, making a true art of 'pissing about' with like-minded people. Silky is great and definitely gives you things to think about, great tips and confidence in what you have to say whether looking to try some stand-up or just in general life. "
"It's great value for money and terribly fun."
- Tom, Stand-up and Improv courses
"I'm so glad that I did it. Probably the best money I've ever spent. I've gained so much validation and confidence in myself."
– Rivka, Stand-up course ... then UK Funny Women Competition Finalist
"You can't underestimate how much your mental wellbeing and confidence is boosted by the joy of simply being daft for a few hours a week. It was a great help with work presentations – helping me to talk naturally to an audience means I don't need to rely on PowerPoint slides anymore. I got this as a gift, so technically was under duress, but I'd still massively recommend it."
– Sean, Stand-up and Improv courses
"Silky's comedy course completely exceeded my expectations. The fact that professional stand up comedians travelled two hours each way to attend the course gives an indication of the quality. Silky is extremely supportive, kind, generous, clever and funny. He is an outstanding teacher and gradually builds up your confidence week by week so that you feel fully prepared to do the five-minute comedy routine at the end. I got my money's worth after the first week, which blew me away. I loved the course, loved the graduation, and I feel like a different person (in a good way). I definitely recommend this course to anyone who wishes to improve their confidence in public speaking and to find their funny. I wish I could do it all again!"
– Liz, Stand-up and Improv courses
"The best fun you could ever have on a Monday night with people you didn't previously know ... one of my lifetime highlights."
– Phil, Stand-up and Improv courses
"Silky's course is brilliant. His warm and gentle approach makes you work hard without realising and gets the best out of everyone. Best thing I've done this century!"
– Julia, Stand-up course
"Everyone should give this course a go. Forget jokes, forget stand-up comedy, forget public speaking. Sign up and have a great few weeks making good friends, learning some more about yourself: build some confidence and have a bloody good laugh. Oh, and you'll also learn about jokes, stand-up comedy and public speaking."
– The Hodge, Stand-up and Improv courses
"The course is fantastically good fun, I made some great new friends, had lots of laughs and I got back on stage for the first time in over twenty years. Money well spent, I reckon."
– Trev, Stand-up and Improv courses
"It was stimulating, challenging, invigorating and, above all, enjoyable. I'd recommend it for anybody who wants to re-awaken their brain."
– Noel, Stand-up and Improv courses
"If you are serious about learning how to do stand up, public speaking or just want to step outside of your box, then this course is THE course – and you'll like it."
– Steve, Stand-up course
"I had so much fun on Silky's course. He really has created something special here. You will meet fantastic people who become your tribe – encouraging you to keep testing yourself and cheering you along, way after the course finishes."
– Wendy, Stand-up and Improv courses
"Excellent course from start to finish. Week one is just a room full of strangers, by week six you will have made some friends for life. Apart from the birth of my daughter, this is the best thing I've ever done."
– Dean, Stand-up course
"You have built up my confidence in my ability to such a level that I am now seeking out places where I can make honking noises come out of stranger's mouths. What have you done to me? Silky has a wealth of knowledge for aspiring comics to tap, he is incredibly supportive and will help you find your unique comedy voice."
– Steph, Stand-up course
"I thought the course was just brilliant. It has unleashed my creative writing juices."
– Kath, Stand-up and Improv courses ... went on to Britain's Got Talent!
"I felt I was suffering a writer's block. Silky's course broke that block and opened up new ways of thinking about material development and writing in general. His way with people is lovely and warm, and he gets you to act in ways you never thought you would in front of strangers who, by week six of the course have developed into friends you will probably be in touch with for life."
– Tom, Stand-up and Improv courses
"I thought the course was great! Much more fun than Toastmasters for improving your confidence in front of an audience."
– Mike, Stand-up and Improv courses
"If you're interested in trying stand-up, or just want a fun Monday night, check out Silky's course. It is truly one of my favourite things!"
– Adam, Stand-up course
"Best course I've done in a long, long time."
- Chris, Stand-up and Improv courses
"Great course, great teacher, wonderful people… Plenty of laughs and an all-round thoroughly enjoyable experience."
- Robin, Stand-up course
"Reflecting over the last few years, I still think that Silky's courses have been some of the best things I've ever done: A1."
- Lee Jackson (FPSA, PSAE, past President of the Professional Speaking Association in the UK & Ireland)
"Thanks to all of you for the amazing course. Total value for money for a start, but also a wonderful, warm atmosphere with great people who are a bit nerdy in the very best way. I really did look forward to Mondays all the way through."
- Felix, Improv Course
"I can't recommend the course highly enough for anyone who is starting out, or who has a little more experience and needs a tune-up."
– Ian, Stand-up and Improv courses
"Life-changing for me, I have a lot more confidence in myself."
- Satnam, Stand-up Course
The Bill Murray : Training
39 Queen's Head Street