From Second City to IO, Chicago knows how to bring the laughs, and now it will show the rest of the world too during the Chicago Improv Festival running from April 25-May 1. The festival features 95 shows from 8 nations and 32 cities. So get your tickets to the 14th Annual Chicago Improv Fest and take note of the 5 must-see acts you won't want to miss.
USS Rock N Roll: Since the summer of 2007, USS Rock N Roll has performed on the main stage of iO West every week. Known for their "explosive" and "highly playful" performances, they explore themes, create grounded scene work, and have fun with the audience.
Friday, April 29, 8:30 pm, $15
Athenaeuum Theatre, Studio 2; 2936 N. Southport Ave., 2nd Floor
Face Off Unlimited: Prepare to go on a "non-stop comedy thrill ride" with Face Off Unlimited's reliance on physical comedy, live music, improvised poetry, and audience interaction. The New York Times called Face Off Unlimited "really funny," while New York City's Night-Life Exchange called them "nothing short of brilliant."
Saturday, April 30, 10:30 pm, $10
Chemically Imbalanced Comedy, 1420 W. Irving Park Road
Special Edge Series: Happy Karaoke Fun Time: If you're a fan of Lady Gaga or Journey, then Happy Karaoke Fun Time is not to be missed. However, don't expect the original version -- after all, this is improv. Instead of a traditional piano player/band to back up their performers, the DJ cues karaoke tracks with no vocals during scenes whenever it's time for a song.
Saturday, April 30, 11 pm, $10
The Second Stage Theatre, 3408 N. Sheffield
Baby LeRoy: Part of the CIF 2011 Apprentice Teams, Baby LeRoy kicks off the show as winner of the first annual Bailout Improv Tournament Spectacular held at Go Comedy! Improv Theatre in Michigan. The team not only won a cash prize, but a 12-week run at the theater.
Sunday, May 1, 1pm-3pm, $7
Gorilla Tango Theatre, 1919 N. Milwaukee Ave.
CIF Parties: Ok, so this isn't actually an act, but we think you'll want to know about the Chicago Improv Festival's free official parties. Plus, Wednesday through Sunday, Chicago's young and hip improv ensemble group, Octavarius, will be CIF's official party hosts. They'll have free raffles, a DJ, and activities planned throughout the night.