BNW STUDENT UNION MISSION

Our Motto

IMPROV FOR EVERYONE. IMPROV FOR LIFE. IMPROV FOR GOOD.

Our Mission

The BNW Student Union (BNW SU) is the non-profit school of the world renowned Brave New Workshop Theatre. As a founding leader in the study of improvisation, we have inspired humans of all walks of life for more than 40 years with our transformational curriculum and undeniable commitment to brave creativity.

Through the joyful practice of improvisation, the BNW Student Union delivers engaging learning experiences in a supportive environment so humans of all ages can become their best selves, make authentic connections, and bring more laughter into their lives.

Who We Are

The BNW Student Union (BNW SU) is the non-profit, educational arm of the world renowned Brave New Workshop Theatre (the longest running satirical comedy theatre in the U.S., and founded by Dudley Riggs in 1958 in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA).  Our classes and educational programs are sustained by class fees, donations, innovative partnerships and the generosity of our alumni, staff and community. As a founding leader in the study of improvisation, we have inspired humans of all walks of life for more than 40 years with our transformational curriculum and undeniable commitment to brave creativity.

What We Do

Over the past forty years the BNW SU has inspired tens of thousands of people (ages 9 to 99) to jump out of their comfort zones and bravely discover how the improv for life mindset can improve their lives. Currently, we deliver our time-tested improvisation classes and ongoing improv programs to more than 250 students each week and more than 2,000 annually. The SU campus is located at 727 Hennepin in downtown Minneapolis’ Theatre District, just across the street from the BNW Comedy Theatre. Our school offers a vibrant community environment with three floors of classrooms and student lounges.

We created the BNW SU Everyday Improv™ curriculum and a campus culture of undeniable support for personal growth, creative bravery and playful discovery. By practicing the improv tools and mindset weekly, we inspire our students to embrace the behavior of “jumping in” (into a room, into a conversation, onto a stage, or any situation in life) to innovate in life without a script. Our SU teachers are passionate, wise, playful and inspiring and are trained to engage each individual student, helping them connect improv principles to the meaning in their own lives. Most importantly, our teachers foster and sustain a safe, creative environment that allows each student to succeed, explore, take risks, make decisions and play.

Our Brave New Vision

Here’s our declaration:
We believe everyone has an improviser within, and unleashing that mindset can have profound impact on lives and communities. Our aim is spread the Improv for Life mindset and its transformative effects around the globe, making the gifts of improv accessible to all. And history shows all successful movements begin at home and grow from a strong, local community. Therefore, our first objective is to grow our reach so we can transform the lives of 10,000 students annually. In time, this Improv for Life movement will benefit communities everywhere with more shared laughter, open minds, and the power of “yes, and”.