Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Mary Scruggs - 1964-2011

It's with great sadness that we need to let you know that longtime Second City instructor and writing program head Mary Scruggs passed away unexpectedly last night. Our condolences go out to Mary's husband Richard and son William - as well as her many, many friends at Second City and in the Chicago theatre community. Mary was funny, brilliant and beloved. She will be greatly missed.

For more information about Mary and her incredible legacy, click here.

20 comments:

  1. OH MY GOD! I'm in shock and tears, she was an amazing person, words cannot express my sadness right now. Prayers for her family and friends.

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  2. I met her for the first time last year, when I began the writing program. This is tremendously sad news. My sincere condolences to Mary's family and friends. She was an inspiration to many, and I will miss her cheerful, thoughtful, brilliant encouragement. A great lady.

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  3. Such heartbreaking news. I studied with Mary in the writing program 10 years ago and have wonderful memories of her. I was hoping to come back to study with her again. Very, very sad to hear. I wish my condolences to her husband and son.

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  4. I met Mary during a visit to Chicago, taking the week-long writing program. She was luminous and funny. To her family, my heart goes out to you. She affected my life and my writing forever with her humor and her common sense.

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  5. I am deeply, deeply saddened. Mary was a major talent as a writer, director, and teacher...and more importantly she was a dear friend.

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  6. Truly a sad day. Mary was such a support and inspiration to so many lives. and her legacy will live on. Sincere condolences to Richard and her son. Miss you Mary.

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  7. Mary was such a delightful and wonderful woman. We'll miss her very, very much.

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  8. I'm in shock. Mary Scruggs was an awesome person and teacher. I hope her family and friends can find some comfort in the incredible effect she had on the lives of so many people.

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  9. Rosenberg/Breving FamilyJanuary 12, 2011 at 2:31 PM

    Shock at her death, and our condoliences to her family. She'll be missed!

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  10. I will never forget your kindness. That is too early. We had many things to do together. Many hearts beating sadly for your loss in Turkey. We share this pain with all your friends and family from here. Your hug was enough for continents. So long Mary... You said to me once: Let's keep talking next time in Turkey. And we did it. Now I say let's keep playing together when we meet again someday. Thank you very much for all inspiration that you gave. We love you.

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  11. I took a writing course with her last year. She was one of the few writing teachers I had that encouraged her students to chase their dreams while simultaneously informing them that it really is a difficult path. With every class I learned something and grew as a writer. I'm so shocked and saddened to hear of her passing. My condolences to her family and friends.

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  12. Mary was such a great person. My prayers go out to her and her family during this time. Not only was Mary a great writing teacher, but Mary was also great at using and teaching improvisation in the education classroom. Many of Mary's teachings and beliefs are a great presence in my high school English classroom. It was an honor to learn from her. She was an inspiration and will be truly missed.

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  13. Mary was one of the kindest souls I have met in my adult life. I was lucky enough to take one of her writing classes at the Training Center a few years ago. Getting a compliment from Mary on your writing was unforgettable, because, quite simply, she was so talented and her brilliance was so readily apparent. Many condolences to her family and friends. Chicago lost a great one today.

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  14. Mary was literally one of the first faces I saw in The Second City, and the first person to make me feel like I was a part of a family here -- just minutes after I entered the Training Center doors for the first time. The loss of her incredible kindness, happy soul and always-encouraging smile is a tragedy for every newcomer to Chicago that won't have the fortune to meet her. When I met her, I knew I had found a place wherd I fit. Thank you always for that, Mary. You will be missed, but you will always be celebrated.

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  15. Her passing is a strong rebuttle to the notion that the universe, ultimately, makes sense.

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  16. Ode to Mary
    Mary was the most kind and passionate person I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. She was full of life and energy and you could hear the delight in her voice with every sentence she sang; often caught humming between thoughts. She was an angel taken away too young. Mary had a jubilant way about her was always welcoming and never judgmental.
    Mary Scruggs had a wealth of knowledge and experience, yet the patience to let you finish your thought. Mary loved life and her presence will be sincerely missed, in every sense of the word.

    - C.Haris

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  17. Mary was a wonderful instructor. She took pity on two young buys from Dayton, OH looking to be big city comedy writers. She was willing to work with us over the internet so we didn't have to drive to Chicago every week. It was a first for Second City. Our prayers go to her family and friends.

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  18. completely heartbreaking

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  19. Mary was my first teacher when I did the writing program eight years ago. She was sweet, encouraging, honest and funny. Last year, I got further in my quest to be a professional writer than I ever have, and I owe a lot of that Mary. This is incredibly sad, shocking news. RIP Mary, and thanks for everything.

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  20. Mary coined the term "schmacting," or at least she loved using it when she was directing. "Schmacting" was a particularly poisonous kind of mugging, and was to be avoided at all costs. She brought a lighthearted seriousness to her work with students, elevating what might have been "just another writing 5 show" to something much more special, much more worthwhile, and much more valuable to actors, writers and audience. She did not condescend to anyone. Instead, she conspired with everyone on the great project of comedy. Everyone who worked with or studied with Mary was her partner in crime, and that was what made her such a wonderful teacher and human being.

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