Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Alum Steve Carell Featured in New Yorker

Check out this week's issue of the New Yorker featuring a terrific profile of alum Steve Carell. He talks about his work at The Second City, improv and movie & TV career.

Second City faculty nab Canadian Comedy Nominations! Congrats to all!

Comedic Play or Revue -Maybe (featuring Adam Cawley, Jason Derosse, Rob Norman)

Male Improviser
Ronald Pederson
Sandy Jobin-Bevans

Female Improviser

Ashley Botting
Leslie Seiler
Naomi Snieckus

Performance by a Male - Film
Brian G. Smith – Chère

Writing, Film
Ken Hall & Brian G. Smith - Chère

Direction, Film
Brian G. Smith – Chère

Monday, June 28, 2010

Get More Sassy Gay Friend

Have you checked out the latest installment of Sassy Gay Friend featuring alum Brian Gallivan? If not, take a look at the Second City Network and download your very own Sassy Gay Ringtone.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Cubs and White Sox Bulletin Board

Seth Weitberg imagines what's going through the minds of Cubs and Sox players before the Cross Town Classic for the Chicago Tribune.

Spoiler Alert: Second City Sets Opening for New Show!

The Second City is proud to announce their 98th Mainstage revue Spoiler Alert: Everybody Dies. A Press Opening has been scheduled for Wednesday, July 14th, 2010 at 8:00pm at The Second City Mainstage Theatre (1616 North Wells Street).

In the blockbuster of human life, we all know the outcome - no spoiler alert needed. In spite of this inevitable ending, we continue to live our lives, find joy and understand the world around us. Sometimes our path leads us to save the world and sometimes our path is to simply remind our husband where they left their keys - it's what you make of it and how you deal with it that matters. From cold feet on your wedding day to the comfort of viewing the comic misadventures of others on Reality TV, Spoiler Alert: Everybody Dies reminds us that in the end, we are all in this together.

Directed by Matt Hovde (2009 Joseph Jefferson Award Winner for Best Director and Best Revue), the cast of Spoiler Alert: Everybody Dies includes Allison Bills, Shelly Gossman, Timothy Edward Mason, Sam Richardson, Tim Robinson and Emily Wilson. Julie Nichols is Musical Director and Craig Taylor is Stage Manager. Stylist is Claire Tuft. Set Design by Amy Jackson. The producing team for Spoiler Alert: Everybody Dies includes Chief Executive Officer & Executive Producer for The Second City, Andrew Alexander; Chief Operating Officer, Diana Martinez; Executive Vice President, Kelly Leonard; Producer, Alison Riley and Associate Producer, Monica Wilson.

Tickets for Spoiler Alert: Everybody Dies are available by phone at 312-337-3992 or online at The show schedule and ticket prices are as follows:

Tuesday - Thursday8 pm$22.00
Friday and Saturday8 pm & 11 pm$27.00
Sunday7 pm$22.00

Meredith from The Office started here, at the Second City Training Center

Kate Flannery, best known for her role as Meredith in The Office, wasn't always a well-loved TV actress. She started her career in Chicago, with The Second City Training Center, The Second City Touring Company, and the Annoyance Theater. After 20 years of plugging away, she finally landed her big, well deserved, break.

Chicago Pride recently did an interview with Kate, where she talks about her life, her career, and her character.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Alum Anthony LeBlanc Talks to Nerd City

Second City Alumni Anthony LeBlanc sat down with local comic cult heroes, Nerd City, for an interview on their podcast to discuss video games, comics and Anthony’s work with The Second City. To check out the interview, visit Nerd City.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Second City Nominated for Two Canadian Comedy Awards!

The Second City was nominated for two Canadian Comedy Awards this morning: Best Comedic Play or Revue for 0% Down, 100% Screwed, and Best Sketch Troupe (for the cast of Shut Up and Show Us Your Tweets). Congratulations to the cast and crew of these shows!

Alumni and current cast members of The Second City were nominated for a host of awards for other projects including:

  • Colin Mochrie (Comedy Person of the Year);

  • Peter Keleghan (Performance – Film);

  • Geri Hall, Jennifer Irwin, Paul Bates, Inessa Frantowski and Gavin Crawford (all nominated for performance in Television Category);

  • Brian G. Smith (multiple nods in the Film Category);

  • Sandy Jobin-Bevans (Best Male Improviser and Best Ensemble Performance – TV);

  • Ashley Botting, Jan Caruana, Leslie Seiler and Naomi Snieckus (all nominated for Best Female Improviser);

  • Matt Baram (Best Male Improviser)

  • Adam Cawley, Rob Norman, Jason DeRosse, Paul Constable, and Caitlin Howden (all nominated for projects in Best Comedic Play or Revue category);

  • Carly Heffernan and Jason DeRosse (nominated for projects in Best Sketch Troupe)

  • David Shore, Matt Baram and Naomi Snieckus (nominated for projects in Best Improv Troupe)

Congratulations all!

For a full list of nominees, visit the Canadian Comedy Awards.

Beloved Almuni Gerry Salsberg Passes Away

Beloved Second City Alumnus Gerry Salsberg passed away last night in Toronto. Gerry appeared on the Toronto Second City stage in 1973, and enjoyed decades of success in character roles on television. The Second City extends its condolences to Gerry’s family and many colleagues.

Services for Gerry Salsberg will be held Thursday, June 24th at Steeles Memorial Chapel, 350 Steeles Ave West, Toronto. Memorial donations may be made to the Starlight Foundation (416-502-9474) or to the Hospital for Sick Children (416-813-5320).

Seth Weitberg Gets Political in the Chicago Tribune

Seth Weitberg penned an opinion piece for the Chicago Tribune about Scott Lee Cohen, a pawnbroker and candidate for Governor. Here's an excerpt:

EY! Gov. Scott Lee Cohen here from the future, and I am pumped up to announce the opening of the new Illinois Statehouse/Pawnshop. This state is flat broke, so it's time to break out the pawn brokering, so we don't get broker. EVERYTHING MUST GO!

You can read the whole thing the Chicago Tribune's site.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Bob Odenkirk Improvises with e.t.c. Cast

Alum Bob Odenkirk, in town for the TBS Just for Laughs Festival last week, stopped by The Second City e.t.c. on Sunday night to check out "The Absolute Best Friggin' Time of Your Life." After the show, he joined the cast onstage to improvise.

Friday, June 18, 2010

LA City Attorney Carmen Trutanich Appearing At Second City, Hollywood

LA City Attorney Carmen Trutanich will appear live on stage in the comedy show "This Week @ Warzecha" at The Second City – Hollywood on Monday June 28th at 10pm. Mr. Trutanich will participate in a panel discussion with Second City comedians discussing pressing issues in Los Angeles, including combating gang violence, LA budget cuts, and medical marijuana dispensaries. The discussion will inspire live comedic improvisation.

"This Week @ Warzecha" is hosted by SC Alum Marc Warzecha and features an ensemble of Second City alumni in a unique show based on this week's events in the news. "This Week @" is what happens when "The Daily Show" meets "Who's Line is it Anyway?"

Carmen A. Trutanich was elected City Attorney for the City of Los Angeles on May 19, 2009. Trutanich, who was born and raised in the South Los Angeles neighborhood of San Pedro, attended local schools; earning both his undergraduate degree and MBA at the University of Southern California. California Lawyer magazine chose him as one of the top 10 in the field of environmental law and land use in his roles as practitioner and instructor. Carmen Trutanich, also known as "Nuch", has been named a Southern California "Superlawyer" for the past four years in a row, and has received an "AV" rating from Martindale-Hubell, the highest possible rating, in the areas of legal ability and ethical standards.

Warzecha is originally from Detroit, MI and now lives in Los Angeles where he appeared on MAD TV and Reno 911. He has worked with The Second City as an award-winning actor, writer, and director; most recently co-writing and directing "Can You Be More Pacific?" at the Laguna Playhouse. Marc's work as a satirist has been featured on ABC's "Nightline", Newsweek, and in the Washington Post, and he has been a guest on CNN's "Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer" and NPR's "All Things Considered."

Tickets to "This Week @ Warzecha" are $10 and available now at

New Intensives Added for this Summer

The summer is heating up at The Toronto Training Centre! Two new Adult Intensives were added to the schedule: Going The Distance with Tour Co cast member Rob Norman, and Made In Laban with Mainstage Alumnus Leslie Seiler. Keep your improv fresh this summer!

Read More about our new Adult Intensives.

Andrew Alexander and Second City Honored by Gilda’s Club

Wednesday night, Andrew Alexander and Second City were honored at the Gilda’s Club Agents of Hope Event held at the Ritz Carlton in Chicago. Gilda’s Club is a free support community for men, women and children whose lives have been touched by cancer, and their family and friends. Gilda’s Club was founded in memory of Second City alum Gilda Radner who died of ovarian cancer in 1989. For more information about the club and how to donate, please visit the Gilda's Club website.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Open for G20!

$20 Tickets and $35 Dinner Packages Available!

Yes, The Second City will be staying open throughout the G-20 Summit.
There are simply too many things about this summit to laugh about.

And best of all, we offering some great deals!
Tickets are just $20 for any show from Tuesday June 22nd to Sunday June 27th,
Call the box office at 416-343-0011, or book online using “G20” as the promo code.

Plus, we have incredible dinner packages available!
For only $35, you can enjoy a hilarious show and a delicious two course dinner at your choice of three participating restaurants.
Call the Second City box office to book your reservation.

With these deals, Second City will be the best place in town to share a beer and a laugh with a foreign diplomat.

Bob Odenkirk Recommends Chicago Improv Classes

Bob Odenkirk, who will be in Chicago June 18 & 19 for the Just for Laughs Festival, gave the Onion AV Club a list of his favorite things to do in Chicago.

Along with burger joints, the El, and the frozen lakeshore, Bob recommended taking classes at The Second City, iO, and the Annoyance. He praised the Chicago improv, sketch, and theatre scene for its diversity and edginess.

Read the full article from the Onion AV Club

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Musicians! Get Your Song in a Movie.

Ever wanted to get $1,000, be profiled in Variety, and have your song on the soundtrack of a movie? Now's your chance! The Second City's first film, BuzzKill needs a hit song for the soundtrack, so we're teaming up with Variety and to find one. The winner will be chosen based on a combination of celebrity judging and scientific musical analysis done by uPlaya's system. Check out how you can enter by clicking the image to the right. Good luck!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Claudia Wallace and Brian Gallivan's "Rosa Parks" video will air on Tosh.0 this Wednesday.

Check out Tosh.0 Wednesday night to see Brian and Claudia on TV! Until then, enjoy the video.

Andy Cobb's BP ad parody will air on Inside Edition today at 3pm

Today at 3pm PST, the BP parody video from the Second City Network will air on Inside Edition.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Vote Second City for Mayor for Audience Choice

Voting is now open!! Second City is up for the coveted NOW Magazine Audience Choice Award at the 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards and we need YOUR help to WIN!

Visit before 11pm on June 24th to cast your vote. Scroll to the bottom of the list and type Second City For Mayor into the "other" box. Enter your contact info and voila! you've cast your vote and we're one step closer to being Toronto's favorite show.

Time is ticking so be sure to vote today!

Befriending Blago

Second City alum Ed Furman imagined the Facebook page for Rod Blagojevich. Check it out in the Chicago Tribune.

George Wendt Book Signing @ PUMA – Tues, June 15

In addition to performing with The Second City Alumni Reunion Show – Class of ’79, Second City alum George Wendt (of Cheers fame) will also sign his memoir, Drinking With George: A Barstool Professional's Guide to Beer at PUMA's new store at 108 North State Street on Tuesday, June 15th, at 5:00pm. Through personal stories and fascinating facts, Wendt delivers an ode to beer and all its irresistible peculiarities. In between spinning hilarious and frank tales of his own imbibing adventures -- from taking a first sip of his grandfather's Bud as a child in Chicago to a beer-fueled impromptu performance with Woody Harrelson and the U.S. Women's Synchronized Swimming Team -- he leaves no stone unturned in his quest to reveal and relish every detail about his favorite beverage.

"Will Rogers once said he never met a man he didn't like. I feel the same about beer." - George Wendt

Friday, June 11, 2010

Congrats Blackhawks! Check out John Cates's tips for celebrating from today's Tribune.

Congratulations, Hawks fans! Your team has finally won the Stanley Cup, and today is parade day. But without much recent experience in this area, John Cates has some friendly tips for you in today's Chicago Tribune.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Second Show Added for Alumni Reunion Show!

Due to popular demand, The Second City Alumni Reunion Show - Class of '79 has added a performance on Thursday, June 17 at 10:00pm at The Second City e.t.c. Theatre (1608 North Wells Street, 2nd Floor of Piper's Alley).

For one night only, the cast of 1979 will reunite in a benefit performance for The Second City Alumni Fund as they recreate some of their classic scenes from The Second City archives. Directed by The Second City Co-Founder Bernie Sahlins, the cast will feature George Wendt, Tim Kazurinsky, Nancy McCabe-Kelly, Bruce Jarchow, Danny Breen, Bernadette Birkett and legendary Musical Director, Fred Kaz.

Tickets for The Second City Alumni Reunion Show - Class of '79 are $75.00 & $100.00 and available by phone at 312-337-3992 or online at

Second City Opens Theater on the Lake – June 16 – 20

The Second City is proud to open Theater on the Lake with The Second City’s 50th Anniversary Revue for a limited run – June 16 -20. Theater on the Lake has been a tour de force in the Chicago community always bringing you edgy, creative and classic theatre from the best off-Loop theater companies.

Tickets may be purchased via phone 312.742.7994 or by visiting the box office at Fullerton Avenue and Lake Shore Drive during Box Office hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 2-8 pm, Sunday, 3:30–7:30 pm. Tickets are $17.50 each (Visa, Mastercard and Discover are accepted). Performances begin at 7:30 pm, Wednesdays through Saturdays, and at 6:30 pm on Sundays.

For more information and detailed descriptions of each performance, visit Theater on the Lake

Robert Klein Featured on New York One

Alum Robert Klein was featured on New York One News today. He describes his training at The Second City as, “…the best thing that ever happened to me.” To check out the whole piece, visit New York One's website.

Former Training Center Student Craig Robinson to Host Last Comic Standing

Craig Robins, best known for his work on "The Office" is going to be the emcee on the upcoming season of Last Comic Standing.

In a Boston Herald article Craig says he feels like a father to the young comics.

Before Craig hit it big with "The Office" and later Zack and Miri Make a Porno and Hot Tub Time Machine he was a Chicago based touring comic. He played venues all across the world, including Mexico, Amsterdam, and Israel.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Make a Day of It! Old Town Art Fair This Weekend

This weekend, our neighborhood hosts The Old Town Art Fair and the Wells Street Art Festival. The Wells Street Art Festival is recognized as one of Chicago's most prestigious art fairs, attracting exhibitors and prospective buyers from all over the nation. Please note there will be a number of street closings to accommodate these events and parking will be limited.

For more information regarding directions, parking and public transportation for this weekend, please visit the Old Town Art Fair website.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Training Center Writing Student, Michael Tester, Opens a New Musical covered the new show Most Likely To: The Senior Superlative Musical, written by Michael Tester. Michael took classes at the Second City Training Center for writing, and has since left his mark on the New York theatre scene. His work on The Awesome 80s Prom and others has made him a hot writing commodity. He is now working closely with Ken Davenport on a new musical even as Most Likely To is about to hit the stage.

See BroadwayWorld's article here.

Time Out Interviews Brian Gallivan About His New Found "Sassy Gay Friend" Fame

Web Behrens at Time Out Chicago did a great interview with Second City alum Brian Gallivan. During Brian's stint on the Chicago Mainstage he developed his now famous character "Sassy Gay Friend." The subsequent videos have been viewed more than 4 million times, and have helped Gallivan snag some meetings and more attention in Hollywood.

Check out the Time Out Interview here.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Doors Open Toronto a success!

Nearly 500 people came through our theatre doors and got an inside look at the inner workings and history of The Second City. The guests got a chance to go backstage, mingle with some of our current cast members, and see original costumes from SCTV, fan mail and scripts. Following the live improv set, guests were encouraged to head over to our Training Centre for a free workshop as well!

Thank you to everyone who participated and attended this year's Doors Open at The Second City!

Smitherman gives comedy a try!

On Friday May 28th, Second City welcomed its second mayoral candidate to join us for the set. To hear more about it, check out the article from the Torontoists who were in the house for his visit.

The next candidate set to visit will be Howard Gomberg on Friday June 11th! Hope to see you there!

Follow us on Twitter @TheSecondCityTO!

Michael Lehrer's The face behind Facebook hits the Chicago Tribune

If you open today's Chicago Tribune to Section 1, Page 3 you'll see the latest installment of Michael Lehrer's Comic Keep an eye on the Tribune for more pieces from Mr. Lehrer.

If you don't get the Tribune, check back here for more in the future.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Second City Salutes Mayor Richard Daley and Congratulates the Theatre District

Mayor Richard M. Daley and other civic leaders gathered Thursday to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the celebrated revival of the Chicago Theatre District. Daley gathered with local arts leaders to celebrate 10 years of the Chicago Theatre District which began in July 2000. After accepting a framed Playbill showing his photograph with wife Maggie, Mayor Daley said the arts are what define a city.

"To me, there's nothing more important than the arts as the mayor of the City of Chicago, and people ask me, 'Why? Why is it that arts mean so much to you?'" Daley said. "As I travel to find what cities are doing differently and to find out what is happening in different parts of the world, it's always an artist. It's not a politician. It's not a government official. It's not a businessperson. It's an artist."

Rod Blagojevich Superstar Makes a Timely Comeback

As Rod Blagojevich's legal circus kicks off, the musical lampooning his behavior returns to bring smiles instead of scams. “Rod Blagojevich Superstar,” a smash hit in 2009, makes a timely remount at the Metropolis Performing Arts Center in Arlington Heights. For tickets go to The Metropolis website.

The Washington Post makes mention of the show in today’s paper previewing Blago’s upcoming trial.

George Celeodis to appear on Party Down

George Caleodis, a regular performer & teacher at the Second City Hollywood, will appear in an upcoming episode of the Starz Channel’s original hit show Party Down. This TV show, now in its second season, follows a group of actors who move to Los Angeles and end up working as caterers. They find themselves stuck working for tips while struggling to get the life they really want.

George’s episode, entitled “The Company Picnic” has the Party Down Los Angeles franchise join with others for a company-wide picnic catered by a rival catering company. In this episode which includes Megan Mullally and Kristen Bell, George’s character has a number of responsibilities. They include Nel’s lackey to the CEO, sign opener, hotdog contest timer and softball scorekeeper.

The episode is scheduled to air June 4th on Starz.

See George Celeodis on IMDB

Party Down Website

Second City and Friends nominated for Dora Awards!

June 2nd the nominations for the 31st annual Dora Awards were announced at the Four Seasons Centre. The Dora Awards honour Canadian Theatre, Opera and Dance.

The cast of Second City for Mayor was nominated for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble.

Second City alumna Melody A Johnson received multiple nominations for her original musical Mimi, including Outstanding Production and Outstanding New Musical. Alumnus Chris Earle was nominated for Outstanding New Musical for his production Robin Hood, The Environmental Family Musical. And Blind Date Produced by Rebecca Northan, in association with Harbourfront Centre was nominated for Outstanding Production.

The awards ceremony will take place June 28th at the Winter Garden Theatre.

Click for more information about Second City for Mayor.

Additional drop-in improv classes added this summer

If you are interested in seeing what an improvisation class is like or just want some extra practice, the Training Center has added some additional times this summer for its popular drop-in classes. In addition to its semi-regular Sunday 6pm classes, drop-ins will also run on Wednesdays at 10pm from June 16-August 18.

These classes are open to all levels of improvisers, and you do not need to be a Training Center student to attend. Drop-in classes cost $10, and registration is taken in-person at the Training Center reception desk on the fourth floor of Pipers Alley, 1608 N Wells Street. A full list of available class dates is available on the Chicago Training Center website. For more information call 312-664-3959.