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RS Saints audience photo credit Helen Patuck preview
Photo credit: Helen Patuck

It’s often said that laughter is the best medicine and if you look at the reviews on the website of the local comedy improvisation group, Renegade Saints, it’s easy to see why!

“I laughed my guts off!”

“Laughed so much and for all the right reasons.”

“I was so energised from laughing at you all as I walked home. Your guys should open a health club and just project reruns on the wall. It’d make a killing.”

So who are the Renegade Saints and why should we go and see them?

Based in Geneva, the Renegade Saints are an eclectic group of about 10 performers of varying ages and different international backgrounds – all with a passion for improv. Performing regularly in the city since 2014, they can be seen mainly at the Mr Pickwick Pub on the Rue de Lausanne, but the group also does private shows, workshops and other special events throughout the year.

RS The Saints photo credit Valentina Shapiro preview
Photo credit: Valentina Shapiro

One of the Renegade Saints, Katt Cullen, told us, “Some people call us an improvised theatre group, I’d call us a little stage-family of performing fools who don’t mind looking silly for the sake of entertainment.”

Viki Lazar added, “There are so many reasons why people do improv. Some of us find it is a way to challenge ourselves creatively. Some of us just love staying on our toes; pushing ourselves out of our comfort zones. We might be working towards personal or career-based goals. We might be actors, working on ways to develop characters. Some of us might have no theatrical background at all, and simply use this as a way to build confidence speaking in front of big groups; to work on vocal projection. Some of us think it's a pretty awesome way to meet cool people that have a go-getting and positive attitude to life!”

Monthly shows

Fast. Funny. Made Up. is the aptly named title given to the group's monthly shows, where the audience provides suggestions and the group performs fresh, spontaneous sketches for their amusement.

RS Full house at the Renegade Saints Dec 2016 show photo credit Helen Patuck preview
Photo credit: Helen Patuck

Shows performed at the Pickwick Pub usually start at 20h, with doors opening at 19h30. Tickets are normally priced at Fr. 10.- per person, including your first drink of the night.  Following the success of their recent February performance, Pure FEBrication, you can be sure that their March event, Question MARk, and April event, Highly inAPRopriate, will not disappoint!

Improv classes

Given the Renegade Saints' infectious laughter, it’s no surprise to hear that many of the people who go and watch the group find themselves signing up for one of their improv classes.  Indeed, their courses are now so popular that they are currently offering 3 levels: one for beginners, which lasts about 4 weeks, and the other two for more confident performers, lasting about 8 weeks.

New courses are scheduled at the beginning of each trimester, so if you want to sign up for the next series of classes, send your details to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. The current 4-week course for beginners costs Fr. 100.- per person.  Classes are held at various locations throughout Geneva.

RS Students at a Saints workshop photo credit Renegade Saints preview
Photo credit: Renegade Saints

One student, Adela Bevan, sent us a long, glowing recommendation about her experience at the classes. To give you a taste of what she had to say, here are a few lines from it:

"There is a philosophy and guidelines in improvisation, just as in other activities. One of the major ones is "Always make the other performers on stage with you LOOK GOOD". Without being too Dippy Hippy and romantic, it actually really creates a great ambiance to work in. It creates a level of trust so that we can explore how to improvise. Of course everyone wants to be the best improviser but you learn very early on, its all about the team, the group and how to support each other while improvising. I am sure if this idea was followed in many work places or homes it could succeed in creating a lot of harmony. Enough of the philosophy, what do we do in class, well on top of making new friends, from all different walks of life, all different ages, all different nationalities, we also laugh. In between the laughter we learn new skills, such as building characters and stories, using emotion in improvisation, how to think on your feet, how to create something out of thin air, how to get up and perform in front of others."

Summer drop-ins

When the sun is out, the Renegade Saints head to the park for open-air-prov. These regular drop-ins throughout the summer provide the perfect opportunity for you to try a bit of improv, without having to commit to signing up for multiple classes.

RS The Saints cohosted a workshop at the Refugee Cultural Festival photo credit Renegade Saints preview
Photo credit: Renegade Saints

Corporate workshops

Improvisational comedy or “improv” is always fast, fun and unpredictable. People end up exploring ideas they were not even thinking of just moments earlier. The results are spontaneous and and often hilarious. Yet there is a serious side to improv.

According to Renegade Saints course leader, John Zimmer, improv teaches skills such as quick thinking, cooperation, active listening, creativity and leadership.  He told knowitall.ch. "The principles of improv are relevant for personal and professional development and can help people become better leaders, managers, colleagues and speakers. They can be applied to the working world for personal development, team building, creativity and more."

The Renegade Saints offer workshops on different themes tailored to organizations and businesses, all designed to help you and your team to be more open, constructive, confident and creative.  Click on the three sample workshop links below to find out more:




RS Backstage with the Saints 2 photo credit Helen Patuck preview
Photo credit: Helen Patuck

Improv charity event

If you want to get a flavor of what improv is really about, either seeing a show, or trying your hand at a workshop, there is a unique event taking place at the Théâtre Cité Bleue in Geneva on Saturday, 24 March.

The Lac Léman-a-Palooza Improv Festival welcomes 7 improv troupes from around Switzerland, including the Renegade Saints from Geneva, who will combine forces to create a unique day-long programme of theatrical improvisation for your entertainment...and to raise money for The Flying Seagull Project, which helps refugees in need.

Tickets are priced at Fr. 35.- each (Fr. 30.- if you pay before 19 March), and include entry to all evening shows performed between 18h and 23h. With acts ranging from an improvised murder mystery through to the exciting, fast-paced world of the secret service, not to mention the Renegade Saints, and a special performance by their Level 2 Workshop Students, you will not be disappointed!

The workshop programme includes classes for all levels: check the website for more details.

Renegade Saints

RS Bob Bartram and Katt Cullen at Feb 2018 show photo credit Nathan Quintanilla preview
Photo credit: Nathan Quintanilla

Fast. Funny. Made Up.
Mr Pickwick Pub
Rue de Lausanne 80
1202 Geneva
Upcoming shows: 8 March, 12 April, 10 May 2018 @ 20h
Fr. 10.- entry includes first drink

Lac Léman-a-Palooza Improv Festival
Théâtre Cité Bleue
46, av. du Miremont
1206 Geneva
Saturday, 24 March 2018

renegade saints 1
Photo credit: Catherine Nelson-Pollard