This week on Yes But Why, I chat with Jeff Rogers, comedian, emcee, author, keynote speaker, actor, game show host and so much more.
Starting off as an award-winning stand-up comic in the late 1980’s, Jeff Rogers was spotted by Amy Sedaris who suggested he audition for The Second City Theater in Chicago. Jeff is the second youngest performer behind John Belushi to be hired at the renowned Second City theater.
Jeff Rogers is currently a Professional Corporate Emcee, a best-selling Author, and an award-winning Creative Director with almost 30 years experience engaging audiences. In 2011, Jeff was the Creative Director for the inaugural Chicago Ideas Week featuring 170 speakers at 60 venues across the city of Chicago. Jeff can be seen on TV in his recurring roles on Chicago PD & Chicago Fire and in his numerous national commercials.
In our conversation, Jeff talks about being an improv evangelist, meaning he tells everyone they should take an improv class. I am the same. Seriously, everyone go take an improv class.
We talk about Chicago improv in the late 80s/ early 90s heyday. We talk about Jeff’s experience in the community and how it shapes the classes he teaches today.
Jeff talks to me about Players Workshop, Chicago’s oldest improv school. This is where Jeff studied improv in the late 1980s and he counts founder Jo Forsberg as a major inspiration in his life. When Jo retired in the early 2000s, Players Workshop closed down but Jeff couldn’t bear it. So he connected with Ms. Forsberg and got her blessing to revitalize the Players Workshop once again.
Jeff talks about his book, “The Playmaker Mindset” and the idea of using your innate creativity to achieve your goals. We talk of our love for speaking in front of large crowds (and how much we miss it). Jeff tells me about the big events he hosts and how he loves bringing improv to the corporate world.
Support Jeff Rogers by taking classes with The Players Workshop! You should also hire Jeff Rogers to emcee your corporate event! It’d be so fun! #MeetJeffRogers
Read Jeff’s book, “The Playmaker Mindset: A Radically Fun Way To Build a Culture of Teamwork and Instant Innovation,” available now on Amazon!
Also, Jeff is working on a project to collect statistics on how improv theaters are run globally as a means of helping current and future improv leaders. Go to profitableimprov.com to add your theater to the survey and you’ll get full access to their findings!
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(production notes: recorded zoom meeting via Rodecaster on 5/20/2021…posted on 6/14/2021)