Chicago comedy group will bring its best back to Point
Chicago’s famous sketch comedy and improvisation group will be back in town for seconds on more laughs, more fun and more community connections this month.
The Second City returns to Stevens Point to stage “The Best of Second City” Saturday, April 9, at Sentry Theater@1800, 1800 North Point Drive, Stevens Point. Tickets for the 7:30 p.m. show are $35 for premium seats and $30 for standard. They can be purchased at the door or by calling Central Wisconsin Tickets at 715-498-2339 or online at cwtickets.com.
The show will feature the best sketches and songs from The Second City’s 55-year history, which featured actors like Bill Murray, Gilda Radner, Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell.
“Their shows are always funny,” said Greg Wright, executive director of the Arts Alliance of Portage County, which sponsors the show.
Wright lived in Chicago for six years a few blocks from The Second City, so it was a “go-to” any time friends and family visited, he said. It made such a good impression it made sense to bring them to Stevens Point when the alliance was looking to bring in a comedy act to replace its annual community show last year.
The group was so well received with its “Hits Home” performance focusing on localized humor that the Alliance decided to have the group come back.
“The Arts Alliance is always looking for opportunities to build community through the experiences we offer,” Wright said. “Nothing builds community better than gathering together for a night of laughter. That you can support the arts, culture and creativity in the process makes the experience even better.”
This performance is the Arts Alliance’s largest event fundraiser. Monies raised goes to cover general Arts Alliance expenses, staffing costs and work done to support a variety of Arts Alliance initiatives such as programming, public art projects and advocacy, Wright said. In the past, funds have gone toward events and projects like the sculpture park, the Central Wisconsin Film Festival, music festivals and ArtsWalk.
The Second City was well received last year, the first year the alliance brought in a professional group rather than performing its own community show, so Wright said it made sense to bring the group back.
Members of The Second City said they are happy to return.
“The people of Stevens Point must have liked us, which is great, that’s what we are going for,” said Maria Randazzo, a Second City group performer originally from Cleveland, Ohio. “We love performing in the Midwest – friendly, warm, down-to-earth people are great to perform for and meet.”
Each show is unique, Randazzo said, so those who attended the show last year will have a completely different one to take in this time around.
“We will cover many different topics: politics, relationships, family, technology and more,” she said. “Our goal is for an audience to relate to our show and enjoy The Second City’s satirical take on the various issues of modern day life.”
The group also will have done its homework on the area, researching again landmarks, popular hangouts and/or events, and any “quirky” nuggets they can find to engage the audience, she said. Attendees also are encouraged to get involved.
“There is improv in the show, and we will frequently ask the audience for suggestions to inspire us,” she said.
The Second City is a feeder for shows like “Saturday Night Live,” Wright said, and is intended for adults.
Sponsored by the Arts Alliance of Portage County, “The Best of The Second City” will raise funds to support the continued operations of the Arts Alliance and the further expansion of the Create Portage County Initiative.