Friday, September 28, 2012

Second City Touring Company's Cecily Strong on Thursday's SNL

Check out Second City Touring Company alum Cecily Strong on Thursday's SNL special election episode.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Teacher Spotlight with Tyler Dean Kempf

Nancy Fast interviews Faculty Member and Directing Student Tyler Dean Kempf in our latest Teacher Spotlight. Tyler’s web series, Door to Door, is airing now on or The series features student alumnus Tommy Reard and current Faculty members Micah Philbrook and Lauren Dowden.
Listen in to find out what motivated Tyler to write the series and how he managed to audition a kid on the street!
The Second City Training Center offers classes in Improv, Comedy Writing, Acting, Stand-up and More. Term 6 begins on October 22, 2012. For more info, visit or call 312.664.3959

Listen to the Podcast!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Congratulations to the Emmy Winners

Congratulations to all the Emmy winners, who include Second City Touring Company alum Julia Louis-Dreyfus won for Best Actress, Comedy for her role in "Veep" and Second City Training Center grad Eric Stonestreet won Best Supporting Actor, Comedy for his role in "Modern Family."

Click here for the full Emmy Awards Nominees and Winners

Book Launch for SKETCH, at Glad Day Bookshop

Sarah Bertrand is a recent graduate of the Second City Training Centre's writing program and is gearing up for the big launch of her second book.

There will be guests, drinks, music and laughs, and you can get her second book, Sketch! It's based on her year at The Second City Training Centre. Second City Writing alumni Rob Schulz, Ryan J Graham, and Oliver Ho will all be there to do a reading!

Actress/singer Jessiqua Elin Clausen and VERY special secret guest will be performing, "Adele Goes To Walmart", from Sketch. Thursday September 27th from 7:30pm-9:30pm.

Ira Miller

The Second City was saddened to learn of the passing of beloved alum Ira Miller. Ira performed on the Mainstage in Chicago in the mid 1960's before moving on to star in a number film and television programs in Los Angeles, including the Mel Brooks' classic films Blazing Saddles, High Anxiety and Spaceballs. Ira was also a cherished faculty member of The Second City Training Center in LA.

Friday, September 21, 2012

The Second City Teams Up With MyStudio for BuzzKill Movie Contest

"Black Santa" Remix/MTV-style Music Video Contest and Promotion for Second City's New Film BuzzKill Launches Today!

The Second City and the producers of the new feature film BuzzKill today announced that they have teamed up with MyStudio to launch the "Black Santa Remix Contest". Contestants will utilize MyStudio®HD Recording Studios to produce an MTV-style music video of the song "Black Santa" from the movie BuzzKill. The videos will be produced with clips and other elements from the film. BuzzKill is an absurd comedy about a struggling British writer named Ray Wyatt, whose magnum opus, Great Shame, a dark tale about two brothers, abuse, and revenge is rejected by his girlfriend, agent, and every LA studio. But when he decides to write a script called Black Santa, Ray finds overnight success but in an unusual, fateful way.

The contest launched September 14, 2012 and runs through December 14, 2012. Contestants can create their "Black Santa Remix" video at any MyStudio HD Recording studio location. Alternative means of entry can also be found at under the contest page. The winner of the video contest will be determined by public online voting at and will receive their own copy of BuzzKill on DVD, two (2) roundtrip flights to Chicago, two (2) night hotel accommodations, two (2) tickets and VIP seating to a Second City show and the opportunity to attend a workshop at The Second City's Chicago comedy school with the Co-Writer and Director of BuzzKill and former Second City Alum Steven Kampmann (Back to School, Stealing Home).

BuzzKill is the first motion picture to be branded by The Second City in more than 40 years. Second City launched the contest with a sponsored screening in New York at the Tribeca Screening Room. BuzzKill distributed by Indican Pictures is available now on Blu-ray and DVD.

"We are excited to be involved with this unique music video contest with the legendary Second City," states Anna Madrid, VP of Media & Communications for Studio One Media. "The contest with MyStudio is a real innovative way to create additional awareness and interest for BuzzKill."

"We're thrilled to work with MyStudio on this project. It's an exciting and creative way to engage with our audience," states Andrew Alexander, CEO & Executive Producer, The Second City, Inc.

Second City Excited to Welcome JFL 42

The Second City is thrilled to participating as both a performer and venue for JFL42 (Just For Laughs's 2012 Toronto Comedy Festival), beginning today at venues throughout Toronto.

Click here to read a Toronto Star preview about this exciting festival like none other.

In addition to performances by our own improv and sketch comedy troupe, The Second City theatre will play host to amazing series of guests over the next eight days:

Please note: tickets for these shows are available exclusively via JFL's Festival Pass system, and cannot be purchased from The Second City website nor box office.

Sat Sept 22 @ 1pm
Kelly Carlin -- daughter of comedy icon George Carlin - brings you A Carlin Home Companion, a new look at her father's legendary career, and finding her own voice.

Sat Sept 22 @ 4pm
Canadian icon David Suzuki will be taking part in The Interview Show, a lighthearted interview with David and comic improvisation conducted and performed by members of Second City and Toronto’s Monkey Toast. Come see the legendary environmentalist like you’ve never seen him before!

Sun Sept 23 @ 10pm
Brendon Walsh & Tom Segura. Two comedy buddies. Brendon is not afraid to challenge audiences, and had the balls to perform stand-up on Jimmy Kimmel as a scary monster. Tom's the type of guy who names his podcast "Your Mom's House." We don't even fully understand why we find that hilarious.

Sun Sept 25 @ 10:30pm
Neal Brennan, one of the co-creator of Chappelle's Show, brings his stand-up comedy to Second City stage. Recently named by Rolling Stone magazine as one of the 25 funniest people on twitter. @nealbrennan.

Mon Sept 26 @ 10:30pm
Tod Barry -- the comic who makes other comics laugh hardest

Wed. Sept 28 @ 11:30pm
W. Kamau Bell - blunt, bold and totally biased. And he's got the best hair in the biz.

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

The Second City Does Dallas- Extended Through October 6

We're thrilled to announce that The Second City Does Dallas has been extended through Saturday, October 6 at the Dallas Theater Center due to overwhelming response. The Second City Does Dallas was originally scheduled to close on September 30. Click here for more information and to reserve tickets.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Enjoy the Great Outdoors in Old Town

It's Old Town outdoors! Old Town al Fresco is the sixth event in the year-long Living Old Town 2012 series. It is focused on the many great outdoor dining destinations in Old Town. Each participating restaurant/cafe offers a 4-day promotion that best shows off its style and cuisine. Come back here to as more announcements are made, and make sure to keep up on and follow @OldTownCHI on Twitter.

Old Town al Fresco Promotions - Monday, September 17th -- Thursday, September 20th

Benchmark | 1510 N. Wells
Buy one select pizza, get the second one free on the patio

Bistrot Margot | 1437 N. Wells
$5 Kir Royales on the patio

Catering Chocolate | 1712 N. Wells
$1.00 off all lunch specials

Corcoran's | 1651 N. Wells
Free Appetizer w/ purchase of $15 or more w/ mention of event; dine-in only

Dinotto Ristorante | 215 W. North
1/2 price Wine w/ Dinner Purchase; must mention event

Einstein Bros. Bagels | 1443 N. Wells
9-17/18: Free Bagel (signature/classic) w/ purchase of Pumpkin Blended drink
9-19/20: Free Pumpkin Scone/Pumpkin Muffin w/ purchase of Pumpkin Latte

Kamehachi | 1531 N. Wells
Free order of Gyoza for patio diners

O'Brien's Restaurant |1528 N. Wells
1/2 price appetizers 5-7pm, with mention of event.

Old Town Pour House | 1419 N. Wells
Free "bar bite" or dessert with a purchase of $30 or more

Orso's Restaurant | 1401 N. Wells
Half-priced select appetizers from 4pm-7pm

Subway | 1529 N. Wells
$5 footlongs (excludes premium subs); Free coffee w/ breakfast meal; $1 Breakfast Muffin

Trattoria Roma | 1535 N. Wells
1/2 price wine on 9-17/18; ½ price appetizers 5-7pm

The Twisted Baker | 1543 N. Wells
Free cup of coffee with purchase of $5 or more

Click here for more information about Old Town.

Monday, September 17, 2012

CPS Strike Camps are Still in Session

CPS Strike Camps are still in session. Those who were registered for the previous week are still registered to continue this week unless we are notified that they will not be returning. Students are encouraged to sign up for the waitlist as some spaces may become available. Camps run from 10am through 3:30pm. Please call the Training Center is you have any questions 312-664-3959.

Second City Toronto Celebrates 3rd Annual Open House!

The Second City Training Centre Toronto is proud to announce its 3rd annual open house celebration, Saturday, October 20, to welcome new students to its recently renovated facility. Under the leadership of Artistic Director Kevin Frank and Training Centre General Manager Erin Conway, The Training Centre student community has grown to over 4,200 students annually. This year the Training Centre has introduced programming for grades 2 to 4. Also operating out of The Training Centre is Second City's Education Program. This branch of The Second City hosts over 24,000 Ontario students each school year to deliver curriculum-based performances and workshops. These shows are a lively blend of original sketches, songs and improvised scenes. Our experiential workshops have lessons that can be directly applied to all subjects in the Ministry of Education's Ontario Curriculum. Additionally, the Education Program recently added an extremely popular anti-bullying puppet show, Stop Punching Judy (available in both French and English).

The Training Centre's John Candy Box Theatre, named in honour of legendary Second City Alum John Candy, will be celebrating its 4 year anniversary this winter.

The daytime open house activities will feature a family open house from 1:00 – 5:00 p.m. with drop in workshops in improvisation, sketch writing and stand up comedy, an Alumni Show, a Teen Showcase, and a performance of The Principal's Office, Where the Filed Things Are presented by The Second City's Education Company. Complimentary snacks and prize giveaways will be offered at the event.

1:30PM - The Detention Hall: Teen Showcase
2:00PM - Alumni & Faculty Jam
2:30PM - Musical Jam
3:00PM - The Education Company's: The Principal's Office, Where the Filed Things Are
4:00PM - The Puppet Company's: Stop Punching Judy


Adult Improv
Stand Up
Musical Improv

Youth & Teen Improv
Stand Up

Adult Improv

Adult Improv
Longform Improv

For free tickets to the performances or to RSVP to this special event call 416-340-7270.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Second City Hits the Bull's-Eye in Dallas

The Second City Does Dallas has hit the bulls-eye in Dallas and is receiving rave reviews. Elaine Liner with the Dallas Observer calls it "wicked satire" and Lauren Smart from Broadway World notes "if you're willing to laugh at yourself, perhaps with the aid of a few whiskey-cokes...Second City Does Dallas turns the eccentricities of our great city into well-delivered punchlines."

The Second City Does Dallas is presented at the Dallas Theater Center through September 30. Click here for more information and to reserve tickets.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Special offer to assist parents with child care

In case the teacher strike continues we are please to offer this free service CPS families beginning 9/12/12

Second City Day Camp
Ages 8-14

As a special offer to assist parents with child care, The Second City Training Center will be offering a free CPS Strike Camp. Students will spend the morning learning Improv games and exercises and the afternoons studying Sketch comedy. Plus while they are in the building, they’ll get the opportunity to see a family friendly Second City show!

Registration is free but space is limited and on a first come first serve basis. Lunch is not included but a supervised break will be provided between 12:30-1:00pm. Attending students should bring a sack lunch as students will not be allowed to leave the building during the break.

Register here at

Second City Day Camp During CPS Strike

Ages 8-14

As a special offer to assist parents with child care, The Second City Training Center will be offering a free CPS Strike Camp. Students will spend the morning learning Improv games and exercises and the afternoons studying Sketch comedy. Plus while they are in the building, they’ll get the opportunity to see a family friendly Second City show!

Registration is free but space is limited and on a first come first serve basis. Lunch is not included but a supervised break will be provided between 12:30-1:00pm. Attending students should bring a sack lunch as students will not be allowed to leave the building during the break.

Register here at

Check out WGN's Thursday feature and this article from the Huffington Post on our Day Camps during the Chicago Teachers Union Strike.

Monday, September 10, 2012

Second City Talent Joins Saturday Night Live

The Second City is proud to announce that Second City alumni Aidy Bryant and Tim Robinson as well as Second City Touring Company member Cecily Strong have been invited to join the cast and crew of Saturday Night Live, NBC's Emmy Award-winning late-night comedy showcase, for their 38th Season.

"As always, we are thrilled with the success of our alumni and wish them all the best as they journey to the next step of their careers at Saturday Night Live," stated Andrew Alexander, Executive Producer of The Second City, Inc.

Aidy Bryant

Aidy Bryant most recently wrote and performed in The Second City e.t.c.'s Jeff Nominated revue, We're All in This Room Together which was her second revue on The Second City e.t.c. stage. Her first revue, Sky's the Limit (Weather Permitting) won Jeff Awards for Best Production – Revue, Ensemble and New Work – Musical or Revue. Ms. Bryant is a graduate from Columbia College Chicago where she participated in the Comedy Studies program, which offers a unique opportunity to study full-time at The Second City, the nation's center of comedy and satire, for an entire semester and earn college credit through Columbia College Chicago.

Tim Robinson

Second City alumni Tim Robinson wrote and performed in two revues on The Second City Mainstage including Spoiler Alert: Everybody Dies and South Side of Heaven. He is also an alumni of The Second City Touring Company. He hails from Metro Detroit, Michigan where he was a member of The Second City Detroit Mainstage for almost two years. Prior to that, he toured the great state of Michigan with The Second City Detroit Touring Company.

Cecily Strong

After studying at The Second City Training Center in the Conservatory Program, Cecily Strong performed with Second City Theatricals aboard the Norwegian Jewel and has been on the road with The Second City Touring Company since 2011. Cecily Strong is an Oak Park, IL native.

Second City and The Lyric Opera Launch Dr. Opera Videos

La Bohème's bickering lovers Mimì and Rodolfo have some serious stuff to work through. So do adult children Hansel and Gretel. Which brings them to the office of Dr. Opera.

Eating disorders, dubious wardrobe choices, issues with authority, money problems, unrealistic relationship expectations – check out how "Dr. Opera" puts the fun in dysfunction!


Aria ready to laugh?

Back in July, two legendary organizations - Lyric Opera of Chicago and The Second City - announced their debut collaboration: The Second City Guide to the Opera, a comedy and musical revue onstage at the Civic Opera House Saturday, January 5. The show will feature the world-famous soprano Renée Fleming, Lyric’s creative consultant (who came up with the idea for the companies to work together in the first place), along with performers from the fabled comedy troupe and opera company.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Dallas Gets Barbecued, Chicago Style!

We're headed to Dallas Theater Center with a special show featuring a mix of archive and original material written by Brooke Breit and Ed Furman and starring an all-star Second City cast including Frank Caeti, Amanda Blake Davis, Martin Garcia, Liz Mikel, Scott Morehead and John Sabine. The Second City Does Dallas opens tonight with performances through September 30. Click here for more information & to reserve your tickets.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Last Chance: Girls' Night Out @ Metropolis

You've got one last chance to check out Second City's Girls' Night Out, directed by Ryan Bernier (recently directed the new hit show We're All in This Room Together at The Second City e.t.c. Theatre) at the beautiful Metropolis Theater. Tickets are available this Thursday - Saturday at 7:30p. Click here to reserve your tickets.