Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Make ?em laugh

The Second City comedy troupe returns to the Liberty

Express Staff Writer

Chicago?s famed ?The Second City? comedic tour troupe presents ?One Nation Under Blog? at the Liberty Theatre in Hailey.

Call it satire, improv or just plain straight-up jokes, "The Second City" presents it all, and for the sixth year will return to the Liberty Theatre in Hailey to present hilarious sketch comedy, including songs and audience participation to shed some satirical light about the world we live in. This year's traveling troupe brings "One Nation Under Blog" to the Wood River Valley for two nights Friday, Jan. 18, and Saturday, Jan. 19, at 7 p.m. Tickets are $25 for lower reserved seating and $20 for balcony reserved seating.

Besides the fact that "The Second City" is always a sellout, Company of Fools company member R.L. Rowsey said it's amazing the troupe includes Hailey on its national tour.

"For how well respected a company, which is based in Chicago, it plays all the major cities," Rowsey said. "We are a small hole for them."

"One Nation Under Blog" is the latest touring show from The Second City, which mines comedic gold from the day's headlines and the world of politics, entertainment, media and bloggers. The troupe is known for its social and political commentary, and nothing is sacred.

"They will ask about our local interests and hot spots," Rowsey said. "They integrate all this local stuff into the show from the day they arrive and add it in for that night."

"The Second City" was founded in Chicago in 1959 and is known as the training ground for many of comedy's biggest stars, especially for the television show "Saturday Night Live." Its illustrious alumni include Mike Nichols, Elaine May, Alan Arkin, Joan Rivers, Robert Klein, Peter Boyle, Harold Ramis, John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, George Wendt, Martin Short, John Candy, Bonnie Hunt, Tim Meadows, Chris Farley, Mike Myers, Tina Fey, Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Horatio Sanz, Ryan Stiles and countless others.

Cutting-edge improvisation done by the next generation of comedy stars in a live performance is entertainment at its best, and "One Nation Under Blog" is no exception. Looking at all sides of the human experience, the traveling show has a no-holds-barred approach, from the recent elections to giving audience members an American citizenship test.

The show is geared toward an adult audience and is great for a group night, which has become a tradition for several valley residents.

"There is something about being able to laugh with 250 people," Rowsey said. "It's good for your health."


The Second City workshop

Chicago's "The Second City" will conduct an improv comedy workshop at the Liberty Theatre in Hailey on Sunday, Jan. 20, from 2-4 p.m. The two-hour workshop is for ages 16 and over and the class is limited to 15 participants. Cost is $40. Registration for the class and a ticket for the show on either Friday, Jan. 18, or Saturday, Jan. 19, at 7 p.m. is $55. To reserve a space and more details, call 788-6520.

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