The Second City Training Center

Chicago's top sketch comedy theater has a brand new show, is bringing back a mega hit this summer, and went through quite the makeover in 2016. Here's what's new with The Second City...

A Red Line Runs Through It

Non-Stop Laughs: A Red Line Runs Through It

The Second City e.t.c. theater's 40th revue, A Red Line Runs Through It, was already receiving a lot of buzz before it opened. Why? This cast is one of the most diverse in the theater's history. And since it opened on April 28, it's receiving great reviews and is Jeff recommended!

A Red Line Runs Through It rides the rails of Chicago in order to answer life's tough questions. How does the past sculpt the future? Are we all guided by anger? In this ever-changing landscape of nostalgia and uncertainty sometimes we need a brunch with friends to sort it all out. No one knows what tomorrow will bring and the only thing that is certain is that this train keeps moving. This non-stop locomotive launches from north to south along a transit line of pure comic bliss.

A Red Line Runs Through It has an open run on Thursdays (8 p.m.), Fridays & Saturdays (8 & 11 p.m.) and Sundays (7 p.m.). Be sure to stay for the FREE improv sets after select performances! Tickets start at $23: Buy tickets

Inside Tip: People say that The Second City's e.t.c. shows are for locals because they capture the edginess and personality of the city, so if you want a unique, experimental taste of Chicago, see this show!


The Art of Falling

Comedy/Dance Collab: The Art of Falling

I saw Hubbard Street's and The Second City's collaboration The Art of Falling back in 2014 and am thrilled it's returning this summer to the Harris Theater for Music and Dance in Millennium Park! Their perfect blend of comedy and dance entertains you from start to finish.

The unique two-act production combines sketch comedy with contemporary dance, musical theater, and improvisation. Named to "best of 2014" lists by the Chicago Tribune, Chicago Sun-Times and Newcity, and lauded by dance and theater critics throughout Chicago, The Art of Falling was declared "hugely entertaining and strikingly emotional," and "not-to-be-missed" by Chicago Tribune chief theater critic Chris Jones.

The Art of Falling runs June 9-19 with various performance times. Tickets start at $30: Buy tickets

Inside Tip: Tickets sold out super fast two years ago, and this year's run will sell out again (they even extended it to June 19 to accommodate the demand). If you put this on the shelf to think about later, you'll miss out!


The Second City Training Center

Expanded Space... Including a Bar!

The Second City is getting bigger and better thanks to its new expanded Training Center in Piper's Alley. To accommodate the growing demand for classes and performance opportunities, The Second City took over the second floor of the building to enhance the overall student experience. It's a sweet set up!

Obviously the expansion includes more classrooms, but there's so much more. Most people would go across the street to a bar in Old Town to hang out, but now they can stay in the building and drink and dine at the new 1959 Kitchen & Bar.

1959 at The Second City Chicago

There are two new cabaret theaters, The Beat Lounge and The Blackout Cabaret, featuring sketch revues and improv shows from Second City Training Center students and alumni (including yours truly!).

There's also communal workspace with workstations and bleachers open for students to relax and work in between classes. Plus a Sound Stage and the Harold Ramis Screening Room! So. Much. New. Stuff.

If you've ever thought of taking improv classes, or writing classes, or stand-up classes (clearly they offer a lot of options), now is the time to do it at The Second City! With this expansion and a more campus-esque atmosphere, you'll get hooked and never want to leave the building. Who knows, maybe they'll soon provide cots and overnight rentals. 

Inside Tip: When you sign up for classes, keep your eyes open for special workshops from Second City alumni who are now doing super cool things like TV and film!


Visit for more Chicago show schedules, plus some great history on the incredible alumni... faces famous worldwide that include Bill Murray, John Belushi, Tina Fey and Steve Carell.