Sharp New Website for Schaumburg's Laugh Out Loud Theater

September 26, 2010 § Leave a comment

The nation’s finest comedy venue located beneath a bridal store has unveiled the new LOLtheater.com.  Nice work indeed.

If you haven’t heard, Laugh Out Loud is the place for improv comedy in Chicago’s northwest suburbs, but more goes on there than the beloved (check out the Yelp reviews) 7:30 & 9:30 improv revues every Friday & Saturday.  Here are just a few…

Classes Start in Two Weeks


LOL offers 8 week sessions in Beginning and Advanced Improv, as well as Stand-Up Comedy. Classes begin the week of October 11th, so register today!

Check out loltheater.com/classes for more info.

Open Mic Every Sunday NightFree Open Mic Every Sunday Night @ 7pm

Head to Laugh Out Loud every Sunday for the open mic – not only is the show free, but there is plenty of free popcorn. You can watch the stand-up comedy, or even hop up onstage and try it yourself. Did I mention the free popcorn? Sign up at mammothopenmic.eventbrite.com.

Thursdays: A Crazy Variety Show!

Thursdays: A Comedy ShowA variety show featuring stand-up, live music, digital shorts, and much more! Every Thursday @ 8pm.  Tickets are $10. Check loltheater.com/also_appearing for more information.



Lots of fun stuff.  And if you make it out to a Friday or Saturday improv show, you might even see me torturing the audience and my fellow performers with my “talents.”

Showbiz Legends Bring Variety to Laugh Out Loud Theater

August 24, 2009 § Leave a comment

Laugh Out Loud Theater is, without a doubt, the coolest place in Schaumburg.  (Sorry, LEGOLAND® Discovery Centre.)  The venue is known primarily for lots of sharp short-form improv comedy, with shows for the whole family as well as late shows (and a full bar) for the grown-ups.  This Thursday night, the theater hosts the premiere of a new production that promises to spice things up.

Living entertainment industry legends Montgomery and Cooke present That’s Showbiz, Kid!, a singing dancing comedy variety show featuring a wide array of talented guest performers!

Lorraine Montgomery and Paddie Cooke have been living the “Show Business” life longer than even they can remember. From their years working the vaudeville circuit, to radio, TV, and now the Internet, this funny and lovely couple have been doing whatever it takes to put smiles on faces across the country. They’ve seen it all – the good (their successful television show in the greater Baltimore area) to the bad (a one-eyed knife juggler with the shakes) to the ugly (Paddie in the morning without his first cup of coffee) – and aren’t afraid to talk about it. In this, the first leg of their new world tour, they’ll be serving up a variety show with their signature recipe of songs, laughs, special guests, and (maybe) a dance or two.

With guests ranging from comedians to magicians, yodelers, or a high school marching band, you’ll never know what to expect at this show.  Don’t miss your chance to see these hilarious showbiz greats in Chicagoland!Suitcase

That’s Showbiz, Kid! at Laugh Out Loud Theater

Thursdays @ 8:00pm, August 27 – September 17.

$15 tickets can be purchased by calling 847.240.0386.

Learn more about Montgomery and Cooke and read their blog at MontgomeryandCooke.com.

Laugh Out Loud Improv Comes to Chicago!

March 21, 2016 § Leave a comment

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WickeLeaks LIVES!! This is news so big, it brought Wicke Intl temporarily out of retirement!

Laugh Out Loud Theater, a fixture in the Northwest Suburbs for the past nine years, has opened a second location in Chicago’s bustling Northcenter neighborhood, and now they’re celebrating with a Grand Opening Gala this Friday and Saturday!

Laugh Out Loud Chicago features an all-star cast that includes veterans of comedy establishments such as Second City, iO, The Annoyance, ComedySportz and more. The Chicago venue currently features shows every Friday and Saturday night. The early show at 7:30pm is always guaranteed to be appropriate and fun for all ages, while the 9:30pm show is geared more towards adults.

What do they do that’s so funny at Laugh Out Loud?  Why, improvisation, of course! Your suggestions inspire everything you see on stage and help create hilarious scenes, songs, and games right before your eyes!

Laugh Out Loud Chicago also offers classes, a free open mic, and corporate entertainment and training. Look for other shows slated in the coming months to include: Buzzed Broadway (a musical with drinking), The Experts (TED talk meets improv), and Neutrino Project (an improvised movie).

On Friday, March 25 and Saturday, March 26 there will be a special grand opening celebration with improv comedy shows at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. The $30 ticket includes the show, prizes, bar specials, a raffle, surprise guests, champagne toast, and a chance to see the revamped space and meet the ensemble and staff!

Come see the new Laugh Out Loud Chicago at 3851 N Lincoln Ave!

Reserve your tickets at LOLimprov.com or call 773.857.6000!

 

WICKEPEDIA LIVES!!

March 30, 2010 § Leave a comment

Arise, my creation! Arise!

Unfortunately, I’ve badly neglected my Wickepedia over the last several months. (Can someone, anyone tell me how people have the TIME to blog?)

Much has happened, but a few highlights are…

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GayCo’s Audacity of Nope

I had the honor of working with GayCo Productions to promote the premiere of their latest revue, The Audacity of Nope or How I Fell for a Pansy Scheme at the Strawdog Theatre.  I succeeded in wrangling 8 reviewers to attend this hilarious and subversive show, resulting in descriptions such as “extremely entertainingbrilliantly subversiveimpressive wit, contagious camp and explosive humor,” (Chicago Stage Review) “surprisingly fresh and funny…an endearing evening of comedy,” (Centerstage Chicago) and “the music is fun, the comedy is fresh and the writing doesn’t pander…it’s like a gay SNL. Except that it’s actually funny, really funny. (Chicagoist). It was a pleasure to work with this talented group and help their 15th original revue make an impact.

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Instant Musical @ LOL

Back in October, I announced Laugh Out Loud Theater‘s debut of Instant Musical, the latest addition to their popular new Thursday night lineup.  The cast of some of the top improvisers in Chicago, with live piano accompaniment, creates songs on the spot based on audience suggestions, ranging from love ballads to blues numbers and rap. Then, they unite in the second half of the show to create a completely improvised Broadway-style musical.  This show has done so well that it’s still running every Thursday!  LOL is blowing suburbanites’ minds with fully-improvised musical hilarity!

This terrific production has earned some great reviews on Goldstar Events, where members can snag some discount tickets.  Here’s one I thought was notable:

A hilarious retreat into absurdity, talent, and audience fun. We had a blast.

If you [don’t live] very close to Chicago’s Second City, this is your next best bet, and in many regards this comedy troupe is superior.” – Jake Lawrence, Goldstar Member

There you have it.  Laugh Out Loud is superior to Second City, or in some ways a very close runner-up.  Not too shabby.

Experience this night of improv set to music for yourself!

Every Thursday @ 8:00pm
Laugh Out Loud Theater, The Streets of Woodfield, 601 N. Martingale Road, Schaumburg
$15 tickets can be purchased by calling 847.240.0386
Directions and more information can be found at LOLtheater.com

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Chicago SketchFest 2010

Then of course, the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival completely took over my life.  This January’s 9th annual SketchFest was a huge success and brought some incredible talent in massive quantities to Theatre Building Chicago for 2 whirlwind weekends of performances and fun.

Now and then I was able to sneak away from my media check-in table to see some absolutely amazing shows:
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FUCT from NYC had to be seen to be believed, offering the most violence, nudity and curtain dancing (is that what it’s called?) of any show in the Festival. Absolutely outrageous, absolutely fearless, and possibly deranged, these guys know how to put on a hell of a show.
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NYC’s New Exc!tement blew everyone’s minds with their insanely physical and wonderfully messy explosion of a performance.  Their lone female cast member, former-Chicagoan Mary Grill, was bold and hilarious in the midst of their no-holds-barred approach to slapstick.
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I loved Chicago’s own Aemilia & Ed in their latest revue, Common Problems and Recurrent Foibles, a comedy time machine to 1961. My kind of stuff. Damn smart and damn funny.
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The videos made by NYC’s BriTANick are exemplary and their live performance was no disappointment. A terrific show was topped off with a sneak preview of their new short film, “Eagles are Turning People into Horses,” which was an absurd masterstroke.
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I only caught the end of their show, but Last Call Cleveland killed me with their Cleveland tourism videos.  The 2nd of which has a line about their fair city looking “like a Scooby Doo ghost town” that had me in tears.
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Chicago’s The Cool Table was one of my favorites.  Dark, dark sketch comedy with live blues guitar covering the transitions.  Kyle More’s solo sketch “A Man Deciding Whether to Eat a Bowl of Cereal or Blow His Goddamn Brains Out” was one of the best things I have ever seen.

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On the media front, my second year as SketchFest PR Czar was definitely an exciting improvement and we achieved a ton of coverage.  Many press passes were given.  Much was written and recorded for posterity.  More on that later if/when I have time.

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the tim&micah project: CONTINUE

Following SketchFest, I took a nap for 3 weeks.  Afterward, I was thrilled to once again work with my friends the tim&micah project as they returned to Donny’s Skybox for their third revue (which had just debuted at SketchFest).  Far beyond a typical sketch comedy show, the tim&micah project: CONTINUE took you on a roller coaster of emotions and immersed you in a mind-bending non-stop theatrical experience.  Writer/performer duo Tim Soszko and Micah Philbrook once again demonstrated their “unbridled comic genius” (Centerstage Chicago) with an intelligent, original and meticulously-planned revue full of silliness, physical feats of wonder, and surprisingly real moments.  Doing away with the structural conventions of sketch comedy, their scenes morph into each other through dance and performance art transitions, weaving “a web of scenes straight out of a David Lynch fantasy” (Time Out Chicago). You never quite know what’s real, or what to expect as the tim&micah project continues to defy convention and push the boundaries of sketch comedy.

Or as Nina Metz of the Chicago Tribune put it in her 3 Star review…

It’s a nice change of pace when sketch comedians actually treat their audience members like smart human beings.”

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Or as Jason Heidemann of Time Out Chicago put it in his Critic’s Pick review…
Exciting and strange in all the right places, it’s a joy to both watch and take part in.”
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Or as Flavorpill put it…
Brilliant…a roller-coaster combination of physical, intellectual, and just plain absurd comedy.”
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the project never ceases to amaze and I already can’t wait for their next show. “FURTHERMORE?”  “NEXT?” We shall see…

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Hey You Millionaires in Hollywood

Most recently, I had the pleasure of working with critcially-acclaimed sketch trio Hey You Millionaires as they gathered in LA for a couple shows. Comprised of a nationally-produced playwright (James Asmus), a published humor author (Jim Fath), and a high school English teacher (John Bohan), HYM has been voted “Best Sketch Group in Chicago” in the Chicago Reader for two consecutive years and have taken their cerebral black humor all over the country.  This time they were in Hollywood to compete in the 2010 International Sketch Comedy Championship (hosted by Carlos Alazraqui!), and do a rare performance at iO West.  And HYM won the Championship!  Then didn’t!  After being crowned the winner, and as the host was saying goodnight, the producer jumped on stage to admit he had added wrong and then awkwardly announced a different winner!   I still think they were robbed and I have my lawyers looking into it.
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Comedy trivia:  The name Hey You Millionaires was taken from the first sketch of the first episode of the HBO show “Kids in the Hall.”  A couple of years ago, HYM actually got to meet and hang out with the cast of Kids in the Hall, thanks to the brilliance of journalist Steve Heisler.  They played Whirlyball.  Steve’s Time Out Chicago article about the encounter can be read here.  One of my favorite Chicago comedy stories.

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More writing in my web log to come soon…

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