The Second City is thrilled to announce the launch of its latest virtual comedy show as part of the ongoing “Improv House Party” series. Improv House Party: Helter Shelter premierds Thursday, May 14, at 7pm (CT) via Zoom. Delivering “comedy from the discomfort of your own home,” Helter Shelter unites cast members from Second City’s Chicago and Toronto resident stage ensembles in this live, satirical, and highly interactive comedy show. From hot takes on the week’s news to absurd characters to improvisation, anything can happen when this cast lets loose on a topic, theme, or shared human experience. Expect the unexpected as the audience gets into the action in exciting new ways every week.
“Across our stages in Chicago and Toronto, we have an incredible group of performers. It’s so exciting to have them work together--apart, of course--and give them a new place to play together. They’ve been sharpening their satirical claws at home, and they’re ready to get back to making you laugh your head off,” says one of Helter Shelter’s co-directors Anneliese Toft.
“Second City shows have always been shaped by the audience, and this is no exception,” says show co-director Anthony LeBlanc. “While Second City’s live Improv House Party shows have already broken ground in entertaining and involving audience participation from home, Helter Shelter will focus on written sketch comedy that brings audience involvement to a new level.”
Hosted by Second City alums Mary Catherine Curran, Nigel Downer, and Alan Linic, Helter Shelter’s 45-minute free weekly shows will feature a rotating cast including Adam Archer, Atra Asdou, Ali Barthwell, Tricia Black, Sarah Dell'Amico, Asia Martin, Natalie Metcalf, Jordan Savusa, Adam Schreck, and Chris Wilson with musical director Jesse Case and contributing musical artistry from Elise Wattman and Nicholas Gage. Anneliese Toft and Anthony LeBlanc are directors.
“Our cast is looking to push the limits of what experiential online comedy can be. Without giving any of our magic tricks away, I can say that we want our audiences saying, ‘I can’t believe Second City did that online,’” says Toft.
Improv House Party: Helter Shelter
- Premiered Thursday, May 14th at 7pm CT/8pm ET
- Shows recur weekly on Thursday evenings
- Cost: Free, but donations happily accepted to The Second City Alumni Fund
- To register, visit the Online Shows section at www.secondcity.com and click on Improv House Party
In addition to the new show Improv House Party: Helter Shelter on Tuesdays, The Second City features Improv House Party on Tuesdays and Saturday evenings, plus the family-friendly The Really Awesome Improv Show on Thursdays at 11am.
- On Tuesdays, the Improv House Party features Girls Night In, hosted by Carisa Barreca, and featuring a rotating cast members of She The People and special guests. Featuring classic Girls Night games and hilarious improv inspired by your suggestions, this is comedy by women...for everyone! Buckle up for what's bound to be the funniest ladies' night of your life! Each week, the cast will honor a fierce female doing amazing deeds during the pandemic.
- Each Saturday, director Anneliese Toft and Musical Director Jesse Case assemble host Cody Dove with performers Mark Campbell, E.J. Cameron, E.R. Fightmaster, Frank Caeti, Jaime Moyer.
- On Thursday mornings at 11am (CT), The Second City will live stream The Really Awesome Improv Show, a high energy improv show, is fun for all ages, and relies on audience suggestions and participation, very "Whose Line is it Anyway," and 100% family friendly. The host/emcee is Jessie Stegner and the cast includes: Jose Acain, Amie Enriquez, Ithamar Enriquez, Serenity Garcia, Piper Gillin, Carrie Weisberg and Grady Welch. The musical director is Jake Cassman and the director is Frank Caeti.
About The Second City
Since opening its doors 60 years ago, The Second City has grown to become the world’s premier comedy club, theater, and school of improvisation. Alumni of The Second City’s resident stages, touring companies, and theatrical divisions include some of the biggest names in entertainment. The Second City Training Center is the largest school of improvisation-based arts on the planet, with online programming offerings for every level. In 2016, the Harold Ramis Film launched, becoming the world’s only film school dedicated to comedy. Second City Works, the B2B side of Second City, has brought award-winning improvisation and audience-driven techniques to over 600 Fortune 1000 companies, challenging businesses seeking a more collaborative culture to innovate through development programs, original digital and video content, campaign consultation, and more. Second City Entertainment’s foray into television and media continues to produce new content and programming, including two-time Emmy winner SCTV, The Second City Presents: The Last Show Left on Earth for Topic, and the upcoming Martin Scorsese-helmed Netflix documentary exploring SCTV’s enduring legacy.