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Brian G. Smith

Brian G. Smith is an award-winning film-maker, educator, and alumnus of The Second City.  Over the last 20 years, Brian has helped thousands of students exercise their creative spirits, and find their own storytelling voices.

​As head of ‘Annex Improv’ (at the Centre for Social Innovation and MaRS), Brian has created training programs that combine personal and professional growth. "Powerpoint Improv" is Brian's unique custom package for corporate company team-building, found nowhere else in the city.  It combines Presentation Skills training with Classic Improv fun as participants are coached in improving their Public Speaking and Team Presentation skills using PPT slides they've never seen before. 

Brian is also an award-winning creator of short films, web series, TV programs and podcasts.This text is not funny, but Brian is.

John Gallagher Portero
John Gallagher Portero

John is an improv comedian, writer, and actor from London, UK.


He has travelled and performed at the Edinburgh International Improv Festival, Amsterdam Improv Festival, and the Edinburgh and Brighton Free Fringe Festivals.

He has trained with teachers from UCB, Improv Olympic, The Free Association, and The Second City. 


John now teaches and coaches in Toronto with Bad Dog Theatre Company, Annex Improv and The Assembly Improv, and can be seen performing in the city with award-winning team 'SMOOCH' and his one man show, 'One Board Man'.

Yitzi Gal

Yitzi Gal is an improviser and Drama therapist based in Toronto. Yitzi studied Drama Therapy in the masters program at both N.Y.U in New York and Concordia University in Montreal. Yitzi is a faculty member at the Second City Training Centre Toronto in their Improv, Longform, and Improv for Anxiety programs.


Yitzi is also a faculty member at Annex Improv and The Assembly longform improv school in Toronto. Yitzi has trained with the Second City Training Centre, Impatient Theatre Company, as well as the Upright Citizens Brigade in New York City.


Yitzi performs around Toronto with several troupes including The Assembly house team Jibber Jabbar, and the duo We Are Trying, with Cameron Algie.

Yitzi was voted Toronto Improv Uber-Mensch 2015-2020

Yitz Gal

Brian is a fantastic teacher. His ability to make people feel comfortable and judge when they are ready to take on new challenges is very impressive. I have never experienced anything like it.

Chris, Lawyer, Cavalluzzo LLP

Brian is a wonderful teacher, with a great sense of humour ... and a nurturing, patient teaching style. He sees what you're capable of, and then gives you the coaching, or challenge, and/or scene partner you need to be successful  (yes, you will probably have to sing at some point). .. Recommend highly!

Julie, Consumer Insights Manager

Facilitator: Testimonials

Make 'em LAUGH.

With his unique humour-based approach, Brian has helped thousands of students exercise their creative spirits, and find their own storytelling voices.

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Brian G. Smith, Facilitator of Annex Improv
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Brian's Blog

Read what Brian has to say below!

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“As an improv teacher, I’m much more interested in the therapeutic value than in the show business angle. I find teaching beginners to be the most fulfilling, ’cause it’s where the greatest personal transformations occur. There is a trajectory of joy in the first few classes that will never be repeated; they’re discovering that they, and the others in their new tribe, have magic powers. Literally – magic powers.”  - Brian G. Smith

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