Classes open for enrollment starting Tuesday!
Staggered registration for returning students opens this Tuesday. Here’s the schedule:
Level 2 opens at 12pm on Tuesday, December 3rd.
Level 3 opens at 12pm on Wednesday, December 4th.
Levels 4 and 4B open at 12pm on Thursday, December 5th.
Levels 5 and 5B open at 12pm on Friday December 6th.
If you’re new to our program, you can register for level one ANY time by clicking the link below or by calling our Training Center at 773-880-0199.
Los Angeles's Best Weekly Mag Gives Our Hollywood Theater Some Love
“The link between Hollywood’s iO West and Chicago’s Improv Olympic — one of American comedy’s great meccas — isn’t just in name only. Just try walking into the front bar any time the Cubs are playing; pitch after pitch, performers and bartenders will cheer the good and bemoan the bad, while the faces of luminary Chicago comedians hang from the walls. iO (pronounced “eye-oh”) has helped push the world of sketch and improv into the mainstream, mostly under the on-and-off guidance of improvisational guru Del Close. You can actually buy a t-shirt with his face on the front from the box office, or step through the black curtains to the theater in the back to see what the man is responsible for. Seven nights a week, iO plays host to long-running improv house teams, sketch comedy performers currently working through the curriculum levels, and old standby shows featuring the links of David Koechner, Bob Dassie and beyond. For students within the iO education stream, there are two black box theater spaces in the back, where a lot of the real experimentation goes down."
Three special show offerings!
iO is pleased to announce our lineup of incredible New Years Eve shows! One of the best holiday entertainment values in the city, these shows always sell out, and patrons are encouraged to reserve their seats immediately! This year’s lineup includes:
8:00 Del Close Theater • The Improvised Shakespeare Company
A special performance by the superlative ensemble that has captivated iO audiences for years! A cast of tremendously gifted performers improvise a complete two-act play using the styles, themes and language of William Shakespeare. A bonafide phenomenon! Tickets are only $25 and include party favors and a champagne toast!
10:30 Del Close Theater • Whirled News Tonight – The Year In Review
One of iO’s most loved shows, Whirled News Tonight is an improvised political satire, with scenes inspired by newspaper clippings as selected by the audience. The special year-in-review edition’s first act will draw from the top news events of 2013, while the second will feature the performers solving audience members’ problems. Tickets are only $65, and includes party favors, champagne toast and an open bar (wine, beer and well drinks.)
10:30 Cabaret Theater • iO’s Interactive New Years
An enduring audience favorite, select iO improvisers lead the audience in interactive game shows such as Guess The Married Couple (based on the Newlywed Game) and Ho’s and Bro’s. Tons of prizes and lots of hilarity in this rowdy game show. Tickets are only $65, and includes party favors, champagne toast and an open bar (wine, beer and well drinks.)
Tickets are on sale NOW online at www.ioimprov.com/chicago, and can also be reserved by calling our box office at 773-880-0199.
We're moving to Old Town in the Summer of 2014!
iO is thrilled to announce that we will be moving into a new space in the summer of 2014.
After months of grueling searching and negotiation, Charna Halpern closed on our new 33,000 square foot playspace at 1501 Kingsbury in Chicago’s Clybourne Corridor.
Our new home will boast FOUR cutting edge performance spaces, a massive expansion in classroom space, a beer garden, and more! We’ll post photos as the buildout gets underway, and are planning an insane grand opening celebration.
Although we’ll be sad to see the Wrigleyville location close, we couldn’t be more excited about what’s in store!
We’re excited to introduce you to the two newest additions to our Harold Team lineup!
Los Santos Claus
Peter Kim, TC Matherne, Brian Byrne, Brian Holden, Cristy von Rautenkranz, Nick Gertonson, Chris Woolsey, Jamie Burns, Willie Myers, and Shira Wilson
Tim Joyce, Mike Finn, Alex Bellisle, Patrick McDonald, Derek Cox, Damian White, Maura Foley, Elise Jordan, Michael Warner, and Matt Visconage
Flattering profile of latest iO alum to make it big on SNL
The New York Post has released a lovely profile of iO alum and rising SNL star Cecily Strong. Cecily was just announced as the new co-anchor of Weekend Update (alongside fellow iO alum Seth Meyers), and has rocketed to fame on the strength of her incredible stock of characters.
The article also describes how iO Artistic Director Charna Halpern helped get Cecily started on the path to superstardom:
But as she walked past the red glow of the ticket sign in the box office, she spotted Cecily Strong — and realized the 28-year-old had skipped out on the auditions.
“You didn’t audition for me,” Halpern said. “We’re getting ready for Lorne Michaels!”
“Yeah, I know,” Strong replied from behind the wooden half-door at the box-office counter, where she sold tickets for the twice-nightly improv shows.
“I have some ideas, but I wanted to make sure it was really a great audition before I did it.”
“That’s crazy,” Halpern countered. “You’re one of my best people. Let me see what you have.”
Joined by Beau Golwitzer and Tim Baltz
Former Saturday Night Live cast member and iO alumnus Paul Brittain returns to the iO stage for a special one-night only event titled Baltz GolBritzer. Paul will be joined by iO veterans Tim Baltz (Family Tree House Boat Accident, Second City) and Beau Goltwitzer (The Reckoning).
It all goes down this Saturday, November 30th at 8:00 PM in the Cabaret Theater. Tickets are $14 and also include an improvised musical set by our house team The Deltones. Be there!