Choose Chicago® is the official destination marketing organization for Chicago, Illinois. When you’re in Chicago, you’re home. With the countless experiences there are to have here, you're absolutely welcome to do any and all of them.
Founded in 1959, The Second City has become the most influential and prolific comedy theatre in the world.
No trip to Chicago would be complete without a visit to The Second City, the world-famous comedy club and full-time training ground for Saturday Night Live and just about every show on TV that makes you laugh. Second City opened their doors in 1959 with names like Mike Nichols, Elaine May, Alan Arkin and Ed Asner. During the 1970s, John Belushi, Dan Akroyd, Bill Murray and Gilda Radner were performing skits on Wells Street. Then came John Candy, Martin Short, Catherine O'Hara and Eugene Levy with perhaps the funniest comedy series ever, SCTV.
What was once a fledgling company grew into a home for the finest comedic voices of each and every generation. The Second City continuously churned out famous comedians throughout its legendary history and to this day, continues to do so. Some modern day alums include big name entertainers like Mike Myers, Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert and Tina Fey.
No theatre in the world has produced as many famous comedians or can claim to be the birthplace of improv. So come see the next wave of comedic genius here in the heart of Old Town.