History of Improv Comedy

Timeline created by Mritv001
In History
  • Viola Spolin is Born

    Viola Spolin is Born
    An important innovator of the American theater in the 20th century. She created directorial techniques to help actors to be focused in the present moment and to find choices improvisationally, as if in real life.These exercises were later called "Theater Games" and formed the first body of work that enabled other directors and actors to create improvisational theater.
  • Del P. Close is Born

    Del P. Close is Born
    Del Close, who many Improv actors name as their inspiration, was born in Manhattan, Kensas.
  • Paul Sills founds Playwright's Theater Club in Chicago

    Paul Sills founds Playwright's Theater Club in Chicago
    Paul Sills, son of Viola Spolin, a student in the University of Chicago, starts a small theater company.
  • Paul Sills, Howard Alk, Bernie Sahlins meet.

    Paul Sills, Howard Alk, Bernie Sahlins meet.
    From 1955- 1959, the three partners pave their way into establishing The Second City. They are also the first directors of the theater.
  • The Second City Theater Opens

    The Second City Theater Opens
    The Second City Theater opens. Is the first on-going improvisational theater troupe in the United States. The company produces shows for Canada, as well, based in Chicago, originally, later on expanding to Los Angeles and Toronto. The Second City quickly became a platform for many of today's comedians and award-winning actors to start-out.
  • First Saturday Night Live episode airs

    First Saturday Night Live episode airs
    The American late-night live television sketch comedy and variety show, premiered on NBC on October 11, 1975, under the original title NBC's Saturday Night. The show's comedy sketches, which parody contemporary culture and politics, are performed by a large and varying cast of repertory and newer cast members. Each episode is hosted by a celebrity guest, who usually delivers an opening monologue and performs in sketches with the
  • Andrew Alexander Becomes Owner of Second City Chicago

    Andrew Alexander Becomes Owner of Second City Chicago
    Second City's Toronto location was failing. Alexander offered to assume the Toronto theatre's debts in exchange for the rights to operate The Second City in Canada. Bernie Sahlins agreed, and in 1974 Andrew Alexander took over The Second City Toronto. In 1985 Alexander becomes owner of Second City Chicago and has been managing it actively since.
  • MARK LONOW opens up "IMPROV" Comedy Clubs

    MARK LONOW opens up
    After twenty years of being a single standing dinner and show place, the Improv opens its branches in 7 US cities, expanding to a brand name status - going mainstream.
  • Gerald Ownes starts Laughing Gas

    Gerald Ownes starts Laughing Gas
    Laughing Gas begin its' journey. Well into 2011.
  • JUST THE FUNNY Theatre opens its doors

    JUST THE FUNNY Theatre opens its doors
    Just The Funny has been performing improv comedy in Miami since its creation in January 1999. The founders are a group of veteran improv performers with a vision of keeping the art of live improv comedy theatre flourishing in Miami.
  • THEY Improv - Todd Rice joins the game

    THEY Improv - Todd Rice joins the game
    They Improv, a baby of Todd Rice's imagination become a nationwide opertion.
  • Casey Casperson starts Sick Puppies Comedy

    Casey Casperson starts Sick Puppies Comedy
    Sick Puppies Comedy is South Florida’s newest improvisational comedy troupe, and we are proud to call Boca Raton our home. Read more here: http://events.miamiherald.com/boca_raton_fl/events/show/289798625-sick-puppies-comedy#storylink=cpy