Last year, I took a little chance.
After joining ChicagoNow and being a part of Listen to your Mother, I was explaining to Mr. South of I-80 that I wanted to learn more about writing, specifically comedy writing. He looked at me and said, "Erin, we live in the same city where they train most of your comedy heroes." I had just finished reading Bossypants, and knew all about Tina Fey's experience at The Second City, but I assumed that there would be some elaborate process to getting in or participating. My only previous comedy experience was writing the occasional funny story, throwing out one liners, or having a good story to tell at a party.
My awesome husband helped me look into it some more, and I found out I didn't need any previous comedy experience, which is good. I had a lot to learn. So last March, this suburban wife and mother of three with some writing confidence issues became a student at The Second City.
I spent nearly every Sunday in the city. Sometimes, I wouldn't step off the train until almost 10:00 pm. Sometimes my blog writing suffered because I was focussed on sketch writing, or doing homework for class. I wrote and re-wrote and stayed up late to get something just right. I found my voice, learned how to generate ideas, gained confidence, and found that I am indeed funny and that my point of view is shared by others. I also learned that I love writing even more than I thought I did, and that taking chances isn't so scary.
Well, just like the old Virginia Slims ads say, "You've come a long way baby!"
After a year in the writing program, us students are ready to put up our first (hopefully of many) FOUR WEEK REVUE at Second City. With the help of our Director (and instructor) Anneliese Toft, my fellow writers and I have produced SWING FOR THE PICKET FENCES opening this SATURDAY at 10:30 pm and playing every Saturday night through JULY 19.
This is a one hour comedy show filled with sketches and songs (yes songs) talking about the trials of when you dream big, but fail bigger. This show is written by some talented and promising writers, and performed by actors that you will probably see on Second City's MainStage someday. For $13 you cannot beat it!
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