WIT Student Profile: Max Holtz is WIT’s resident rollerblader

Max Holtz is a student in Stephen Carter and Yael Grenader’s Level 2 class. The thing most people notice about Max is his preferred mode of transportation—he rollerblades everywhere.


Tell us a little bit about your line of work.

I am 24 years old and I work as a network engineer for a government subcontractor. For any fellow IT folks out there who will understand, I’ve been a CCNA for almost a year and am currently working towards a CCNP and CISSP.


Can you talk about your decision to rollerblade everywhere?

Rollerblading is a really joyous activity. I truly believe that if everyone rollerbladed, we could achieve world peace. Much like in the film Legally Blonde when Elle Woods explains, “Endorphins make you happy, and happy people just don’t shoot their husbands.” Similarly, it is really hard to be in a bad mood when you are on rollerblades. There’s something so simultaneously ridiculous and exhilarating about strapping wheels to your feet and gliding around everywhere. It forces you to stop taking yourself and life so seriously.


Is it for pleasure or fitness? Both?

It’s for both, but I would say more for pleasure than for fitness. It’s really a de-stresser for me. If I’ve had a rough day or I need to blow off some steam, popping in some earphones and putting on my blades is almost always the cure. That being said, rollerblading will do amazing things for your thighs and butt.


Is improv in any way like rollerblading?

Yes, absolutely. Improv, like rollerblading, is all about motion. Bobby McFerrin said, “Improv is motion, which means that you start singing and you keep going, that’s all.” In both disciplines, you have to do whatever you can to keep things moving. In improv, that translates to “saying yes” and escalating the scene, and in rollerblading that means not falling down. You have to save yourself when you stumble, stay balanced and focused, but remain free and loose to adapt to anything that comes your way.


What has been the greatest/most memorable experience you’ve had in class so far?

There was a game we played in my Level 1 class where we all had to use an imaginary object that wasn’t there. In our case, the imaginary object was a camel. We rode the camel, pet the camel, fed the camel, etc. All without speaking. The game was beginning to slow down as we all were running out of ideas. Then one of our teachers, Sam, slit the camel’s throat. It was amazing and hilarious and opened my eyes to the possibilities you are allowed to explore in improv. It also emboldened me to take chances and not be afraid to “go there”, which has been a godsend for me ever since.


Unleash your creativity with a Foundations of Improv class at Washington Improv Theater! The fall term begins in Sept. 14 and classes are already filling up. Sign up for a class today—no experience required!

August 4, 2015