lower left logo

About Lower Left

Lower Left Improv is the home of improv comedy in the Four Corners region of Colorado. Based in Durango, Lower Left was the natural progression after Mary Quinn  and Cindy Laudadio Hill started sharing their love of all things “improv-y”  to the unsuspecting community. So we started a website!

The Instructors / Performers

Mary Quinn

Mary Quinn is a professional actor and improviser who first found improv in Durango with Durango Dot Comedy. Her next step was moving to Chicago to supercharge her skills, where she trained at The Second City, Improv Olympics (iO), and the Annoyance Theater. Mary is passionate about the power of comedy, regularly hosts improv clinics and workshops, and is a proud member of the Durango drag performance scene.

You can see her perform improv regularly with Cindy and their students at the Durango Arts Center.

mary quinn

Cindy Laudadio Hill

Cindy is an actor, comedian, writer, producer, director, teacher, mother, wife, sister, daughter, and friend (but not necessarily in that order). She’s been performing and teaching improvisational theater since the turn of the century (this one). Teaching improv is one of her favorite things to do.

You can see her perform regularly with Mary Quinn and their students at the Durango Arts Center as well as with The Merely Players, DART and PlayFEST. Prior to her move to this little slice of heaven, she taught and performed regularly on the Front Range. She is also part of The Dishwater Blondes, and is the creator, producer, and performer in SCRIPTprov™.

She was a founding producer of the Denver Improv Festival and the GroupMind Foundation. She is a lifelong student, but is so grateful to all her teachers, guides and cast mates along the way from the Bovine, The Second City, iO, Annoyance Theater, UCB, and Denver Center Performing Arts.

Tara Demmy

Tara is a comedian, theatre artist, comedy historian, and instructor originally from Philadelphia. She trained at the Upright Citizens Brigade NYC and Philly Improv Theater and took workshops with instructors from the Second City, iO, the Magnet, HUGE Theater, and the Annoyance to soak up lots of different improv philosophies. Tara is a “professional” clown and studied movement-based theatre at Helikos International School of Theatre Creation (Italy).

Tara started teaching comedy in 2010 and it’s her favorite thing. She has taught at improv training centers, theatre companies, and universities in Philadelphia, Washington D.C., and now Durango. A big nerd, Tara has a PhD in Theatre and Performance Studies from the University of Maryland.

tara demmy
jeff graves

Jeff Graves

Jeff Graves is a local actor and improviser who specializes in musical improv. Jeff studied theater at the University of Denver. Before moving back to Durango in 2018, Jeff trained and performed improv at the Voodoo Comedy Club (now RISE) and Bovine Metropolis Theater. Locally, Jeff has been seen on stage with Merely Players and DART. Recently, he does his best work when entertaining his toddler.

Sarah Syverson

Sarah has written, produced, and acted in professional theatre for more than 20 yearsShe studied Improvisation, Stand Up Comedy, and Sketch Writing at Second City in Chicago, played on the Durango Dot Comedy team, and currently works with Lower Left Improv as a performer and teacher. She also co-produces The Raven Narratives, a live storytelling event and podcast based in SW Colorado.  In 2019 she was the Executive Producer of Purple Fox Conundrum – an innovative, immersive, theatre-in-the-field experience that collaborated with 30+ visual/performance artists and was featured in the Denver Post. She has worked with Merely Players in several productions including playing the solo lead in the production of Every Brilliant Thing and Growing: Adventures in Food and Farming. She is passionate about storytelling, our fallible humanity, and the quirky and unpredictable ways that we are all connected. When not writing, performing and producing, you’ll find her tending to her elderly goat herd and spending time with her best friend and partner, Janette. 

sarah syverson



Lower Left Studio

Main Mall
835 Main Avenue, Suite 209
Durango, CO 81301

The Lower Left Studio is conveniently located in the Main Mall in Downtown Durango. We’re on the second floor behind the Guild House Games store. This is our home for all classes and rehearsals.


Durango Arts Center

Durango Arts Center
802 E. 2nd Avenue
Durango, CO 81301

The Durango Arts Center (DAC) is our regular home for improv and other major performances. Our monthly shows and Student Showcases are open to the public and take place on the main stage at DAC.


Stillwater Light Box

Stillwater Music School
1316 Main Avenue, Suite C
Durango, CO 81301

We use the Light Box at Stillwater Music for special performances, student events, and workshops. This beautiful and flexible space is conveniently located in downtown Durango, with plenty of parking.