Comedy School

SNL Sketch Writing Workshop

Ali Farahnakian is an American actor, writer, and improvisational comedian. He is the founder of The Peoples Improv Theater (The PIT) in NYC. Farahnakian was born in Iran but grew up in North Carolina and graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1990. After college he moved to Chicago in 1990. While in Chicago he became involved in improvisational comedy and was a performer at Chicago's Second City, ImprovOlympic and was one of the original founding members of the Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB) along with other original UCB members such as Matt Besser, Ian Roberts, Horatio Sanz, and Adam McKay. In 2002 he founded The Peoples Improv Theater (The PIT) in New York City in honor of his mentor, Del Close. His one-man-show "Word of Mouth" was featured at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival.

Farahnakian wrote for Saturday Night Live in the 1999–2000 season and appeared for many years as a sketch performer on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," his memorable characters on the show included playing Conan's agent Ari Palone. Farahnakian has appeared in films such as "Edge of Darkness" and "Arthur." He has made guest appearances on television programs such as "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "30 Rock," and "Louie." In 2012, Farahnakian joined the cast for the third season of the Adult Swim show "Delocated" starring Jon Glaser.

Farahnakian has also written for the MTV sketch series "Human Giant" and produced segments for the Channel 101 website.

04/06/2019 10:00 AM

Door Time: 9:30 AM

Other Showtimes

Available: April 6-7 (Saturday and Sunday), 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. each day

Available: April 6-7 (Saturday and Sunday), 2 – 5 p.m. each day

This two-day workshop with Ali Farahnakian, a former SNL writer and founder of the Peoples Improv Theater, is for anyone who has thought about writing sketch comedy for stage or television. If you've got the ideas and want to know how to build a sketch, this class is for you. This class will demystify what an SNL sketch looks like, what a "packet" for SNL or other sketch shows consists of and what "readers" are looking for in a packet. Please note that each section is limited to 12 people and consists of a 3-hour session each day.


All sales are final. There are no refunds or exchanges.


Admission Policies

  • Patrons must be 18 or older to attend events or classes at the DC Improv. Any exceptions are clearly noted in the event descriptions on dcimprov.com.
  • There is a two-item minimum per ticket. This can be any combination of food items or beverages. Bottled water and soft drinks count as items. (The two-item minimum does not apply to comedy classes.)

Seating Policies

  • For our main showroom, the first show of any night is the "early" show. All other shows are "late" shows. Early shows are seated by time of arrival. The earlier you arrive at the club, the greater your seating options will be. Late shows have assigned seating, and assignments are made in order of ticket purchase. The earlier you buy tickets, the better your seats will be (i.e. closer to the stage). Click here for a more detailed explanation of seating policies.
  • For our lounge, all shows regardless of start time are seated by time of arrival.

Ali Farahnakian is an American actor, writer, and improvisational comedian. He is the founder of The Peoples Improv Theater (The PIT) in NYC. Farahnakian was born in Iran but grew up in North Carolina and graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1990. After college he moved to Chicago in 1990. While in Chicago he became involved in improvisational comedy and was a performer at Chicago's Second City, ImprovOlympic and was one of the original founding members of the Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB) along with other original UCB members such as Matt Besser, Ian Roberts, Horatio Sanz, and Adam McKay. In 2002 he founded The Peoples Improv Theater (The PIT) in New York City in honor of his mentor, Del Close. His one-man-show "Word of Mouth" was featured at the U.S. Comedy Arts Festival.

Farahnakian wrote for Saturday Night Live in the 1999–2000 season and appeared for many years as a sketch performer on "Late Night with Conan O'Brien," his memorable characters on the show included playing Conan's agent Ari Palone. Farahnakian has appeared in films such as "Edge of Darkness" and "Arthur." He has made guest appearances on television programs such as "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "30 Rock," and "Louie." In 2012, Farahnakian joined the cast for the third season of the Adult Swim show "Delocated" starring Jon Glaser.

Farahnakian has also written for the MTV sketch series "Human Giant" and produced segments for the Channel 101 website.