Kelsie Huff is one of Chicago’s hottest comedians. She has studied at iO Chicago and Second City and she teaches the popular Feminine Comique, which is a stand-up class geared towards woman. Jimmy talked to her at this year’s Chicago Women’s Funny Festival about how she uses improv in her stand-up, how to make the transition from storytelling to stand-up, and how she has been able to transform pain into comedy.
Nia Vardalos is an actress, screenwriter and director; best known for her critically acclaimed films My Big Fat Greek Wedding I and II.
Ed Furman is a writer, actor and improviser who has performed in three Second City revues and co-written Chicago’s longest running musical Co-ed Prison Sluts at The Annoyance Theater. He’s also written a sketch project for NBC, two children’s plays and a best selling book. Jimmy sat down with Ed and talked to him about starting out at the Annoyance, how he developed his unique comedic voice, and not worrying about getting the laughs when he improvises.
Kate Flannery is best known for playing Meredith on the NBC series “The Office.” Flannery is also part of the comedy lounge act The Lampshades and was a member of The Second City Touring Company and The Annoyance Theater in Chicago. Jimmy talked to Kate about what is like to be on a hit sitcom, her days in Chicago and why she still keeps a costume change in her car.
Tim Kazurinsky is an actor who was on Saturday Night Live from 1980-84 and is best remembered as Carl Sweetchuck in the Police Academy films. He is also a screenwriter who co-wrote About Last Night. Jimmy sat down with Tim to talk about why he started taking improv classes at The Second City, how he got on SNL and making his Broadway debut last year in An Act of God with Jim Parsons.
Kristy and Jethro Nolan are the co-founders of The Arcade Comedy Theater in Pittsburgh. They are incredibly accomplished improvisers and teachers who have performed at iO-Chicago and Boom Chicago in Amsterdam and taught at the Second City. Jimmy talks to then how they met in improv, why they moved from LA to Pittsburgh, and how they have adjusted to teaching improv in a smaller market.
The Defiant Thomas Brothers (Paul Thomas and Seth Thomas) is a brilliant two-person sketch group out of Chicago. After splitting up 9 years ago, they have gotten back together and now have an open run at The Second City Training Center. Jimmy sat down with The Defiant Thomas Brothers at this year’s Chicago’s Skectchfest and talked to them about getting back together, how audiences have changed, and race in comedy. You are going to love this episode!
Geoffrey Baer is a popular host, producer and writer at Chicago’s public television station, WTTW. In this interview, Jimmy talks to Geoffrey Baer about his theater background, teaching improvisation at the Players Workshop of the Second City, and his grandmother’s prediction for his career.
Anne Libera is the director of The Comedy Studies program of Columbia College at The Second City in Chicago. She is a well-respected teacher and director who was the Executive Artistic Director of The Second City Training Center for eight years. Jimmy sat down and talked to Anne Libera about going from actor to director, becoming friends with Stephen Colbert at Northwestern University and the importance of working with people you like.
Anthony LeBlanc is an actor, teacher and director who recently directed the current Second City etc. show “Soul Brother, Where Art Thou?” Anthony LeBlanc was also a cast member of the Second Mainstage, where he put up two revues. Jimmy talks to Anthony about how the death of his brother has inspired him, why his dream job was to work for NASA and his insight about race in comedy today.