About the Series
Inspired by the Harold improv form and the incredible actors who perform it every night, Life of Harold is a Chicago-based web series meant to showcase improv's greatest form in improv's favorite city. Told through a completely improvised script, the series explores a number of intersecting stories and relationships while addressing current social issues & phenomenons.
Early stages of the show were inspired by a class project directed and filmed by Jeff Paschal at Northwestern University that involved the use of an entirely improvised plot and script. Come graduation and the move into Chicago proper, Jeff and Mathias Blake began to take improv classes at iO Theatre where they met an exuberant amount of talented individuals that had a knack for and absolute love of performance. From there, the two knew they had a responsibility to provide a medium that exclusively showcased Chicago actors, musicians, crew, and the amazing things that the city has to offer.
With the help of the stellar writing duo, Matt Schutz and Meggie Gates, the four put their heads together in order to bring life to stories they believed worth discussing and exploring. After auditioning 60 actors (they were seriously only expecting 15, tops!) and casting 36 of them, the four realized how grand the scope of the project could actually be so they decided to call in the big guns - enter Sean Magner, stage left.
A mutual lover of film, Dungeons and Dragons/ board games, and close friend of Jeff and Mathias' (HAH! NERDS!), Sean's eye for detail, mind for production, and expertise with a camera brought a level of professionalism to Life of Harold that the team could have only imagined at the start of the process. A no-budget project turned into a crowd-funding push, occasional coffee dates turned into countless production meetings, single-camera set-ups became dual-camera car mounts on Lakeshore Drive... Things got crazy!!
And now, here we are - a year and a half later with nowhere to go but up. Thanks to their friends, family, professional connections, and kind strangers like Tim Chan, Peder Goodman, Jim Alrutz, Julia-Kaye Rohlf, Dylan Burrus, and so many more, the team has been able to bring Frankenstein's monster, Harold, to life. The team can't even begin to express their gratitude to each and every individual that played a part in supporting this beautiful project from the days of its early creation. It has truly been an honor, a privilege, and most of all, fun as hell to work with every one of you. Here's to an amazing first season of Life of Harold and to a harder, better, faster, stronger season 2!