And here’s proof you should celebrate Valentine’s Day here with your sweetest! Just a few weeks ago, Cortney Sourwine of Valparaiso, Indiana proposed marriage to her boyfriend Brian Neese. Brian had previously proposed to her on Christmas Eve of 2010, and they were engaged for a time, but Ms. Sourwine says “the stress of life piled up, and I decided to break off the engagement. Now that we've both had time to reflect on the relationship and the stressors that ultimately led to its demise, we feel we are once again ready to consider marriage. However, now the ball's in my court.”
Looking for a special way to ask the big question, Cortney thought of ComedySportz, as she and Brian have been big fans of the show since Brian introduced her to it three years ago. She asked ComedySportz if her proposal could be part of a show and on January 13, convinced Brian to drive in to Chicago in the midst of a snowstorm for the Friday 8 pm performance. The show’s ref, Tara DeFrancisco, brought Cortney on stage as a “volunteer” for the final game and after Cortney contributed some stellar bits of improv, Brian was brought up on stage for the surprise proposal. How did he respond? Check our video of the event demonstrating the aphrodisiac that is ComedySportz.
Our Valentine’s Day Weekend shows are:
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After years of performing live on stage with ComedySportz and in shows like the sketch comedy duo Urlakis and Cusick, Dave Urlakis took his brand of comedy online a year ago when he began the YouTube channel Awkward Spaceship. The channel’s video, “If Computer Problems Were Real”, an exploration of the ways tech speak has appropriated everyday language, was introduced four months ago and has hit nearly 800,000 views so far. And Awkward Spaceship’s fifteenth video, “Danger Hospital” – which imagines a TV series combining the conventions of 24 and ER - was featured just last week on the G4 TV network’s Attack of the Show.
The Awkward Spaceship videos – which have featured a number of ComedySportz players – boast some pretty slick cinematography and editing, but Urlakis is just as comfortable in the low-tech environment of live sketch comedy. He and performing partner Sean Cusick earned raves for their six-week gig at Stage 773 in November and December, with TimeOut Chicago praising the act’s “brainy irreverence, deftly navigating the subtle insecurities and gross overconfidence of the male condition… seriously funny stuff, likably geeky and spot-on in its ridicule.” They sold out their two shows at this year’s Sketchfest in January and have been seen on various comedy stages around town.
Urlakis and Cusick met while writing for a Chicago comedy show. In their spare time backstage on that show, they created a couple of characters to amuse themselves – a pair of clinically depressed Eastern European vaudevillians – and Urlakis and Cusick the act was born. In the midst of all this comedy, Urlakis still finds time for a cool day job as the Director of Marketing & Analytics for a company called The Jellyvision Lab and for his duties as a regular member of the ComedySportz ensemble.
ComedySportz was chosen as a winner in Concierge Preferred’s “Chicago Concierge Favorites Awards” by Chicago’s concierge community. Over 700 concierges voted and ComedySportz was named one of the top Nightlife spots in Chicago!
Held in conjunction with the second “Concierge Day in Chicago”, by proclamation from Mayor Rahm Emanuel, over 500 of Chicago’s top hospitality industry professionals gathered at Concierge Preferred’s “Chicago Concierge Favorites Awards” on January 26, 2012 at the Hard Rock Café. Over 170 businesses were highlighted, as they were hand-picked by Chicagoland’s 700-plus suburban and city concierge as their favorite destinations in the categories of shopping, dining, nightlife and cultural attractions.
“Knowing that concierges trust us to show their guests a good time when they come to our theatre means a lot to us” said Kristi Parker-Barnhart, Concierge Coordinator at ComedySportz Chicago. We know their reputations and credibility are in our hands when they send us their guests. It’s a responsibility we take very seriously. This recognition is a “seal of approval” not only from the concierges but from their guests as well.”
Downtown Chicago Bosses, 2003 - 2010
Teacher, Coach, Improviser
It's with great sadness that ComedySportz announces the passing of Mike Enriquez, a player on our field for several years and the nicest guy in improv comedy ever. Like so many of Chicago's greatest talents, no one theater could keep him all to themselves. Mike was a fixture at ComedySportz, iO, and the Playground as well as starting his Chicago career working on staff at The Second City.
At ComedySportz, Mike performed in the ensemble, taught in the training center, and served on ComedySportz's Artistic Team. Many remember Mike as someone who supplemented his comedic wit and prowess at ComedySportz with amazing dance skills. This ability led Mike to spend his last years in the company as our Choreographer, helping players bring coordination and confidence to our improvised dance moves.
Originally from Oklahoma, Mike is survived by his mother, three siblings, and the literally thousands of improvisers he touched with his gentle spirit and genuine warmth. We'll miss you, Mike.