Treating Stuttering with Improv


Many people who stutter have found that Improv theatre helps them deal with anxiety and lack of confidence. Robert O'Brien, Wendy Duke and Dan Dumsha recently teamed up to present a workshop about improv at the Canadian Stuttering Association conference last month. But before that they were featured on CTV discussing the appeal and benefits of improv and stand-up comedy for people who stutter.

Their CSA Workshop consisted of a discussion, warm up and three games involving spontaneity, humour and uninhibited speech as PWS embrace themselves and let go of fears around talking.

Robert O'Brien is the author of the book Just One More Drive: the true story of a stuttering homosexual and his race car. It is a brutally honest account of the bond he formed with a BMW race car and how this vehicle saved his life and inspired him to share his story to inspire others through dark humour and honesty. His message is centred around the power of communication and vulnerability as an access to freedom. Robert lives in Vancouver, and is a member of an improv group especially for people who stutter called the Unblockables. You can find more about the group here. He was also the subject of a CBC podcast with Gloria Macarenko.