Campus News

View Year

Chicago City Limits Brings Comedy Without a Net to Juniata

(Posted September 10, 2007)

Chicago City Limits uses improvisation to entertain its audiences. They incorporate the audience into all their performances.

HUNTINGDON, Pa. -- Improvisation is essentially the ability to think on your feet, and the improv comedy of the troupe Chicago City Limits will keep the audience on its toes during its performance at Juniata College at 8:15 p.m., Saturday, Sept. 22 in Rosenberger Auditorium in the Halbritter Center for the Performing Arts on the Juniata campus. For information about the Juniata College Artist Series, please call (814) 641-3608. General admission tickets for single performances are $20, except where otherwise noted. Single-show tickets for seniors over age 65 and children age 18 and under are $12. Juniata College students are admitted free with a student ID. The audience will get a chance to participate in the performance by suggesting scenes to the actors. The group can take a shouted topic from the audience and turn it into a mini-musical or an impromptu game show. Chicago City Limits, despite its name, is based in New York City. The group was founded by actors participating in the workshop program at Chicago\'s Second City, an improvisational comedy theatre. The entire group relocated to New York and began to perform at comedy clubs such as Catch a Rising Star and The Improv. The group founded its own theatre in 1980 and continues to perform nightly at The Improv. Over the years the entire group has amassed an impressive set of credits, performing on \"The Today Show,\" the \"Joan Rivers Show\" and on the Comedy Central network. The group also had its own show, \"Reel News\" on the USA Network. The group also has a national touring company of performers: Pete Aguero (\"Cut To the Chase\"), Jason Fletcher (who has performed with the Upright Citizens Brigade), Sharon Fogerty (originally a dancer, she wrote the play \"Bride of Frankenstein: An Experiment in Intimacy\"), Canedy Knowles (who has appeared in the films \"Mona Lisa Smile\" and \"Spiderman\" as well as TV shows such as \"Sex and the City\" and \"Late Night with Conan O\'Brien\"), Jeff Scherer (who is also a playwright and screenwriter), Greg Triggs who has directed a variety of theatrical productions), Nelson Walters (who performed improv while a student at Haverford College) and Deb Rabbai (who has done voiceovers for more than 30 films). \"The results may not always be Shakespearean, Puccinian or Mel Brooksian, but given and audience armed with good-natured sadism, the experience offers a good mix of tension and humor,\" wrote Lawrence Van Gelder in a review in the New York Times. Typically, a Chicago City Limits performance is constructed from audience suggestions, such as asking the audience to call out a place name, an activity, an action and a characteristic, and creating a song on the spot. They also enjoy performing a \"Jeopardy\" game with questions called out from the audience. They have also been known to create an entire musical from a story told by a member of the audience. In addition, the finale of each performance is often called \"Torture the Actors.\" Cast members also will hold improvisation workshops, throughout Homecoming and family Weekend from Friday, Sept. 21 through Sunday, Sept. 23.

Contact John Wall at wallj@juniata.edu or (814) 641-3132 for more information.