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Cleveland Mike - Class Clown logo
Teaching Stand-Up Comedy for kids ages 11-17 

Are you a "class clown"? Or are you just a smart, funny kid?

Well here’s your chance to learn stand-up comedy from real professional comedians, hone your funny attitude into a real stand-up comedy act, and perform for your friends, family, and fans of comedy.

The next workshop is TBD

Check back here for details and registration.

What Students will Learn
  • Joke creation and refinement

  • Public speaking skills and timing

  • Stage presence and confidence

  • Basic comedic persona development

  • Improvement of memorization skills

As part of our mission to celebrate the past, present, and future of Cleveland comedy, the Festival teaches the unique art of stand-up comedy to are youth as a creative outlet of expression.  This workshop is done throughout the year in a four (4) week workshop. 


Each week is a two (2) hour session giving students the time to craft their routine, collaborate with other students and learn from professionals.  Students are taught the different ways to write a joke, assess popular examples, and translate what they find funny to a larger audience.  At the end of the workshop, the Festival provides a showcase for students to perform their routine to friends and family, which we call our "Graduation" show. 


Your lead facilitators will be Cait Hogan, Rodney Bengston, and Rob Coleman — all veteran stand-up comedians and work with the Cleveland Comedy Festival.  Ms. Hogan, Mr. Bengston, and Mr. Coleman have over 35 years of combined experience performing stand-up comedy in comedy clubs, theaters and venues all over the world.  They taught the first Class Clown class in 2012 which graduated with honors.

Want to be involved?

We are always looking for support to provide support materials for students, cover venue expenses, and an honorarium for the instructors.  We are also interested in partnering with venues that want to support the future of Cleveland comedy with some stage time to perform.  You can email us and we will see what can be done!

"(My son's) experience in the Class Clown class is the one he most often points to as being his most enriching, most fulfilling and, usually, most fun.

David, Bay Village   parent of Class Clown student

2015 Class Clown ad

Programming Support has been made possible by a generous Anonymous donor as well as these facilitating and grant awarding organizations below:

The Class Clown Workshop has been made possible in part by state tax dollars allocated by the Ohio Legislature to the Ohio Arts Council (OAC). The OAC is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences to strengthen Ohio communities culturally, educationally, and economically.

Ohio Arts Council

Programming for The Class Clown Workshop is made possible in part by the Cleveland Public Library, circulator of one of the largest and most extensive collections in the country.  We thank them for their partnership in hosting our workshop.

CPL Primary Logo

The Class Clown Workshop has previously been made possible in part by Neighbor Up, supported by Neighborhood Connections, a nationally recognized community-building program established in 2003 as a program of Suite 1300 Services, Inc., a 501 (c)3 nonprofit funded primarily by the Cleveland Foundation and other partners. Its mission is to fuel the power of neighbors to create, together, an extraordinary world right where they live.

Neighbor Up

The Class Clown Workshop has also been previously made possible in part by Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, whose mission is to inspire and strengthen the community by investing in arts and culture.

Cuyahoga Arts & Culture
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