Monday, February 2, 2015

SC Alum Punam Patel Cast in ABC Family Pilot

A huge congratulations to SC alum, Punam Patel, on getting cast in one of ABC Family's newest pilots, Kevin at Work, which also guest-stars SC alum, Amy Sedaris!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

"Panic on Cloud 9" Cancelled Tonight (Sun, 2/1)

Due to the severe weather forecast, we have cancelled tonight's performance of "Panic on Cloud 9." Ticket holders will receive an email from our box office and can call 312-337-3992 for more information. Sorry for any inconvenience! Stay warm and we'll see you after the blizzard.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Vanity Fair Boasts About "Yes, And"

Michael Lewis wrote a wonderful article for Vanity Fair magazine in which he talks about the difficulties of improv and how it can affect daily life. He also goes as far to say "It sounds crazy that a comedy troupe should have anything to say about how you should lead your life. Trust me: it isn't."

Read more here.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

"Yes, And" Sits Down with Chicago Sun-Times

Chicagoans are rightfully proud to boast that the city’s renowned improv and sketch-comedy theater, The Second City, birthed the careers of John Belushi, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Mike Myers, Stephen Colbert and Tina Fey — to name just a few.

Behind the scenes, The Second City is equally successful as a growing and thriving business, with $50 million in yearly revenue. The 55-year-old theater company and its business-to-business unit, Second City Works, together employ 1,000 people. In addition to running the Main Stage, the operation has four touring companies, year-round road shows, a thriving theater in Toronto, training centers in Chicago, Toronto and Hollywood, and custom-designed shows and leadership training sessions for businesses. The company is expanding its square footage by nearly one-third at its Pipers Alley headquarters in Old Town, taking over a former movie theater space to accommodate more offices and classrooms.

The men who oversee these operations noticed that the keys to improv’s success were dovetailing more and more with the ways that people achieve success in today’s knowledge and innovation economy. So they’ve written a book, in stores Feb. 3 and online for pre-ordering, explaining the seven principles of The Second City’s success and incorporating specific examples of how readers can boost their so-called “soft skills” to improve their ability to be smart listeners, team players and adaptable innovators.

Kelly Leonard, 48, executive vice president of The Second City and the son of Roy Leonard, the late WGN-TV and radio icon and entertainment critic, and Tom Yorton, 51, CEO of Second City Works, played out their own advice as they joked and bantered while telling Sun-Times reporter Sandra Guy about the two years of work they put into the book, “Yes, And . . . How Improvisation Reverses ‘No, But’ Thinking and Improves Creativity and Collaboration.”

Read the full interview here.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Youth & Teen Summer Comedy Camps Open House - March 1st

Join us Sunday, March 1st from 9am-12pm for our 1st Annual Youth & Teen Comedy Camps Open House. Kids in grades 2-12 and their parents are invited to join us for a morning of FUN!

Take one or our FREE beginner drop-in improv workshops, check out a hilarious interactive show and fill up on yummy snacks. Get a tour of our Training Centre and see pictures of our expansion (set to open spring of 2015).  Also you can meet the camp staff and pick up cool swag & info sheets. Plus we're having a draw to win a FREE week of camp for anyone that registers that day!

Workshop & Show Schedule:

9:30am - Drop-in Workshop
10:00am - Show and Q&A
10:30am - Drop-in Workshop
11:30am - Drop-in Workshop
12:00pm - Show and Q&A

Spend the whole morning with us or just an hour. No need to register ahead of time just show up and get ready to laugh!

See you soon!

6 SC People Named in Newcity's "Top 50"

Newcity just released their "Top 50 People Who Really Perform for Chicago" and SC CEO, Andrew Alexander made the #1 spot, followed by SC EVP, Kelly Leonard, UP Manager, JB Winkin and SC alums TJ Jagodowski, Dave Pasquesi and Mick Napier. Congrats to all!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Panic on Cloud 9 Cast Speaks to the RedEye

The face of sketch comedy stumbled into a merciless, bloodthirsty bar fight late last year. But the thrashing—dealt by the six tenacious comedians behind The Second City Mainstage's 103rd Revue, "Panic on Cloud 9"—provided a rugged and seasoned look to its otherwise pure appearance.

The result? Chicago sketch comedy is handsomer than ever.

Chelsea Devantez, John Hartman, Paul Jurewicz, Daniel Strauss, Christine Tawfik and Emily Walker deserve our applause for refusing to blend into the comedy mold. Instead, they've punched the industry directly in the face—and done so gleefully.

"Our director [Ryan Bernier] brought in a white board on day one and asked us what we wanted to accomplish," said Walker, a Mainstage regular. "We wanted to make the audience feel encapsulated by our emotions; make this show dark, scary and funny in the most uncomfortable way, and play with silence in scenes. We tested ourselves and said, 'What can we do that hasn't been done before? What boundaries can we push?' "

Goal attained. Sketches intricately tear your emotions from one side of the historic theater to the other. One minute you're cackling so hard your whiskey and Coke nearly flings off the table, the next, your face is concerningly stagnant as tears begin to build...

Read the full interview here.