The Second City

The Second City is an improvisational comedy enterprise and is the oldest ongoing improvisational theater troupe to be continually based in Chicago, with training programs and live theatres in Toronto and Los Angeles. The Second City Theatre opened on December 16, 1959, and has since become one of the most influential and prolific comedy theatres in the English-speaking world.[1] In February 2021, ZMC, a private equity investment firm based in Manhattan, purchased the Second City.[2]

The Second City
GenreSketch comedy
Date of premiere1959
LocationChicago, Illinois, United States
Creative team
Co-founderPaul Sills
Co-founderBernie Sahlins
Co-founderHoward Alk
Executive producernot currently named
Official website

The Second City has produced television programs in both Canada and the United States, including SCTV, Second City Presents, and Next Comedy Legend. Since its debut, The Second City has consistently been a starting point for many comedians, award-winning actors, directors, and others in show business, including Del Close, Alan Alda, Alan Arkin, Harold Ramis, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, John Candy, John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Chris Farley, Tim Meadows, Colin Mochrie, Ryan Stiles, Mike Myers, Nia Vardalos, Steve Carell, Jordan Peele, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, Stephen Colbert, Cecily Strong, Aidy Bryant, and many others.[3]

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