What's it like being an improv student in Chicago? Let's spend a
week with a very busy (but still possible) fictional player/student.


Monday -

8am - 5pm - temp job down in the loop

5 - 6:30 - run home, eat, shower change, yell hello at

7- 9:45pm - do an improv show ("Flip Cup!") with some
friends at Mullens

10pm - share a cab with five other people to get to Second
City to see the Touring Company do their improv set

Midnight - sleep


Tuesday -

8am - 5pm - temp job down in the loop, lurk on the Chicago
Improv Network message board

7pm - meet with writing group. Share and get notes on

10pm - sleep!


Wednesday -

8am - 5pm - temp job, sneak into copy room, make fliers for
upcoming 5B show at iO

7- 10pm - Level 4 at the Second City Conservatory.

10 - 11:30pm - drinks with the class at Oldtowne Ale House

Midnight - sleep!!


Thursday -

8am - 5pm - temp job, snuck a nap during lunch in the supply

6 - 7:30pm - potluck dinner at my house with teammates from
Playground Theater team ("Hello Kitty Porn")

8pm - do improv show, and then stick around to play with the
Big Yellow Bus.

10pm - resist going over to Town Hall for a nightcap. Yes, a
nightcap. I am a 100 years old.


Friday -

8am - 5pm - temp job, hope to get new assignment for next

7 - Midnight - perform in back-to-back shows (8 and then
10:30) at ComedySportz

Midnight - walk from CSz to iO to play in the Improv Jam
with people from my iO class


Saturday -

12 - 3pm - improv workshop at Shiel Park

4- 6pm - nap

8 - 10pm - used iO student pass to see Whirled News Tonight
for free! Yay!

10pm - took 22 bus down Clark Street to Wells. Arrive at
Second City early, have delicious coffee at the giant Starbucks

1pm - watched the Mainstage Improv Set. Awesometown.


Sunday -

Nothing All Day! Finally. Tried to clean. Write e-mail to
Mom. Watched backed up shows on DVR.

7pm - 10pm - 5B shows at iO. My class/show is called "Chucklenomic

11:30pm - home.


Rinse. Lather. Repeat.


This is a pretty typical week for an improviser in Chicago.
As one graduates from each training center, the classes are replaced by
rehearsals for the teams and shows you join. It's a time (and money) consuming


Personally, I worked at a Blockbuster across the street from
Second City (anyone remember that place?) from 7am - 5pm, napped in the storage
room and then closed the Second City souvenir shop at 2am. Repeat. That was
about 4 or 5 days a week. Intersperse with classes at both SC and iO and then
later with shows at both iO and the Playground. I have no idea how I did all



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  • Oh look, you just wrote my life from a decade-ish ago. Gooood tiiiiimes!

    Also: I *totally* remember that Blockbuster.

  • Good grief. Obviously not a life for those of us with families. These days, just getting to WATCH a couple improv shows a year takes some finagling.
    Excited to see this blog up, so I can read about what I'm missing.

  • This person hasn't finished either the iO OR the Second City Training Centers yet they're doing back to back Friday night ComedySportz shows? You know, CSz doesn't just hire anyone off the street...

  • Of course not. This person simply trained at ComedySportz BEFORE taking the other classes!

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