On Monday, July 29th 100 Proof Comedy welcomes a stand-up icon in the making - Stewart Huff – to The ComedySportz Theatre (929 W. Belmont) at 8pm! The Atlanta resident comes to Chicago after a year where he has exploded on the national festival scene, becoming a “must-see” for audience members, and a game-changer among his peers. Here are what others are saying after seeing Huff perform:
"Stewart may be one of the best comedy writers America has seen since Woody Allen. He is able to pull comedy from subjects that shouldn’t be able to illicit any more jokes." - Darrin Hensley, Lexington Comedy Examiner
"Stewart Huff is the best type of comedian: honest and profound. He never settles for an easy joke, but instead pulls big laughs with his weapon of choice: the truth." - Saurin Choksi, Lincoln Lodge
"Stewart Huff is the sort of comedian that other comedians talk about in hushed tones over beers. He's not just winning the game, he's changing it." - Peter-john Byrnes, This Week in Despair
Huff will be performing for an entire hour as headliner, and will be joined by 100 Proof Comedy cast members Cody Melcher (Tomefoolery), Lisa Laureta (OWN’s My Life is a Joke), and Jake McKenzie (Flock Yourself). The evening is hosted by Jamie Campbell (Chicago’s “Best Comedian of 2013 – Chicago Reader Best of 2013 Poll).
Tickets are $10 and can be purchased at The ComedySportz Theatre box office by calling 773.549.8080. This event is expected to sell-out, so we strongly recommend purchasing tickets in advance.
Do you have an idea for a show? Want to produce a show? Have a show that’s ready to go up? Need theatre space for your show?
The ComedySportz Theatre is currently scheduling its Fall/Winter schedule for 2013 and has a few remaining slots open this calendar year. Come work with us!
We’re looking for comedy shows of all types, of 50 to 100 minutes in length. Holiday themed shows are of particular interest. Potential time slots are Sunday evenings and Thursday and Friday late nights.
Beginning July 15, fanz of The ComedySportz Theatre will have a new way to sample the many different comedy shows beyond our main namesake show, ComedySportz. Our new Signature Show Six Pack – a pass good for admissions to any six performances of our late night and Sunday, Monday and Wednesday shows – will go on sale. For just $20, fanz can attend six performances of one show, one performance each of six shows, or any combination in between. It’s good for Dual Duel and Criminal Mischief - the two parts of our “Sunday Double Scoop,” 100 Proof Comedy, The Two Dollar Bill, The Stevens Family, Talk Hard and The Hot Karl. The only restrictions are that the pass may be used by only one person per performance and that it expires August 31, 2013.
Our “Signature Show” line-up includes a great mix or improv and standup. On Sunday nights alone, we have two improv shows running through August 25. Dual Duel is a 12-week-long competition of two-person improv teams from all over Chicago, and it’s followed by Criminal Mischief. That show is a weekly improvised “Law & Order” – style improvised crime drama, performed by Legacy – our house team composed of veterans from ComedySportz clubs around the US as well as some of our more experienced Battle-Prov and Genesis League performers.
Monday nights, we host 100 Proof Comedy – the professional showcase that last year was named Chicago’s Best Venue for Stand-up in the Chicago Reader’s “Best of Chicago” Poll. Wednesdays night’s program is The Two Dollar Bill – a triple bill of improv featuring Genesis League, Battle-Prov and our new The After Party Improv Jam. For the weekends, we have late night fare for adults, starting with Thursday’s The Stevens Family – an edgy an very adult improv shoe that starts at 10 pm. Fridays at midnight we have Talk Hard – just recently named Chicago’s Best Improv/Sketch Troupe in the 2013 Chicago Reader poll . It’s a live and uncensored talk show hosted by Jamie Campbell (named Chicago’s Best Stand-up Comedian) in the 2013 Reader poll. Our Saturday night midnight show is The Hot Karl - known for years as Chicago’s Dirtiest Improv Comedy Show.
The Signature Show Six Pack will be available beginning Monday, July 15 online through Ticketmaster, by phone at 773-549-8080 or at our box office.
Dual Duel tournament a celebration of the Chicago improv community
Imagine playing two-on-two against Michael Jordan…competing against Daniel Day-Lewis or Meryl Streep for an Oscar… or running a marathon in the Olympics. That’s what Dual Duel, ComedySportz’s annual tournament of two-player improv teams, is like. Sort of. It’s a 12-week tournament open to both professional and non-professional improv performers and it attracts players from throughout the Chicago improv community. College players and recent alums join improv students and professionals from the ComedySportz ensemble as well as other improv clubs around town.
This year’s Dual Duel has fifty teams competing in the three-month tournament. Back for their third try at the title (and a $200 cash prize) are the team called “Man 1 Man 2” - Kevin Pomeroy and Abram Rabinowitz, two ComedySportz ensemble members who have made the Dual Duel finals the last two years but have yet to win the big prize. Their preliminary slot will be in the July 28th show. Other ComedySportz players in the tournament include the yet-to-compete Matt Castellvi and Meg Grunewald, as well as the tough but already defeated Asher Perlman.
But if ComedySportz ensemble members and professionals from other theaters like iO would seem to be favored, some of the up and coming players in the tourney have already made surprising showings. One of the two teams to win the first round of semi-finals on July 7th was The Hermanos Brothers, with teammates Eric Stallings and Bruce Phillips of the ComedySportz Theatre’s house team Legacy (the performers behind the show Criminal Mischief, which follows Dual Duel Sundays at 8:30 pm). And ComedySportz Training Center alum Ariel Ringham together with her teammate Daniel Finerty of the team Danger Granger posted a strong second to The Hermanos Brothers in their preliminary round on June 23rd. Another surprise was the team of Ron and Lisa Szanyi. Lisa’s a ComedySportz Training Center student who together with brother Ron impressed in her first time on stage before a paying audience, in the first night of prelims on June 9th.
The Hermanos Brothers shared the semi-finals win with Mommy (Greg Yates and Michael Aviles), besting two former members of the Western Washington University 2011 National College Improv Championship Team called Dead Parrots Society. The Dead Parrots alums are Rashawn Scott and Miguel Vila, competing in Dual Duel as Afternoon Puma. The 2013 Dual Duel has some current local college talent as well, including Loyola University students Eric Rahill, Ben Briggs and Emily Bouroudjian - all members of the Loyola improv team 45 Kings.
At the other end of the age spectrum is Bob Fish. Bob had participated in Dual Duel for a number of years with his son DJ, who’s now off at college and unavailable to play. Bob will compete this year for the first time with a new teammate, Sandy Lacovelli, as Old & Older.
Two of the participating teams pay homage to Chicago improvisers TJ and Dave. A team called “The Improvised TJ and Dave” is actually Josiah Jenkins and Chip Aucoin. They’re regulars in Battle-Prov, which is performed at The ComedySportz Theatre each Wednesday night at 9 pm. Another team, Tea, Jake and Dave, is Jake Allen Miller and David Henry Wrigley. Their shows (which begin with tea shared with the audience) are performed at various venues around Chicago.
The second round of preliminaries begins this Sunday – July 14th – at 7 pm. Between July 14 and August 11, 26 teams will compete for the four slots in the August 18 semi-finals. The two winners from that evening will join Mommy and The Hermanos Brothers in the series finals on August 25th. Will we see another younger team break through and will Man 1 Man 2 get another shot at the title? We’ll find out.
Duel Dual is performed Sundays at 7 pm as part of the Sunday Double Scoop, which also includes Criminal Mischief at 8:30 pm. Admission to both shows is just $5.00. Reservations and more info are available at 773-549-8080.