The Second City Mainstage

Comedy , Stand-up Old Town
  • 5 out of 5 stars
(3 user reviews)
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Chicago comedy clubs: The Second City has occupied its Wells Street address since 1967.

Even if you know nothing about improv, chances are you've heard of Second City. This is the place that put both sketch and improvised comedy on the map while launching the careers of many distinguished comics including Bill Murray, Tina Fey, Chris Farley, John Belushi, Joan Rivers, Stephen Colbert and Steve Carell. Mainstage revues are occasionally stodgy, but most shows are still top-notch.

Venue name: The Second City Mainstage
Address: 1616 N Wells St

Cross street: at North Ave
Transport: El stop: Brown, Purple (rush hrs) to Sedgwick. Bus: 11, 22, 36, 72, 156.
Price: Average price: $20–$30
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Average User Rating

4.7 / 5

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1 person listening
svandenack V

Went to see an improv show and it was by far the best live comedy show I've seen. They also offer a wide variety of shows for all kinds of tastes. Would love to come back here again.

Laura R

This is always at the top of my list of things I tell people to do when visiting Chicago for the first time. It can be expensive, but I've never, ever had a disappointing time at Second City. It's worth every penny. I usually laugh until my face hurts. And chances are, someone in the cast you see will go on to perform on SNL very soon (I saw Aidy Bryant there!). There's not a bad seat, either, as it's a pretty small theater. This is improv at its very best. 

Monica L

Of course visiting a Second City show was tops on my to do list for my first ever visit to Chicago. I worship at the altar of Amy Poehler and Tina Fey and had to make a pilgrimage to see where these two hilarious, intelligent women began. Most friends familiar with the city recommended Mainstage, but timing and tickets just did not work out. A friend and I watched the #DateMe: An OKCupid Experiment show at UP Comedy Club instead. The show was poignant and very funny, though it did end on a bit of a dark note. Overall great experience and I hope to get back for a more improv-based show one day!