The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

The student news site of Eastern Illinois University in Charleston, Illinois.

The Daily Eastern News

Comedian Rhapsody tour stops by Charleston

The well-renowned sketch comedy group Second City came to the Dvorak Concert Hall in the Doudna Fine Art Center on Friday, Sept. 22 to perform their Comedian Rhapsody revue from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Second City has been spreading the gift of joy and laughter for over 60 years. It is responsible for creating some of the biggest names in the comedy like Tina Fey, Steve Carell, Keegan-Michael Key, Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert, Joan Rivers and Bill Maury.

Second City debuted winter night in Chicago in the 1950’s. Since then, it has grown to be the most well-known improv comedy group to date.

“We began in 1959 as a small comedy cabaret and have grown to become the first name in improv and comedy, with theaters and training centers in Chicago, Toronto, and Hollywood,” the description on their website stated. “We’ve also taken improv off the stage, expanding our reach to include creative collaborations with a wide range of creative and corporate partners, wellness and education programs, and TV, film and digital productions.”

The group produces several different shows weekly that are done by smaller intermediate groups within Second City.

For its Comedian Rhapsody tour, a group within Second City made its third stop in Charleston Friday night and took over the stage.

The night began promptly as soon as the clock struck 7:30p.m.

The lights faded out to black and then faded back in shining the spotlight on two women on stage doing a skit about a doctor getting in trouble for sleeping with their patient just to find out the doctor happened to be a veterinarian.

Three skits later, the audience was introduced to the cast consisting of six members, Max, Chase, Dave, Annie, Cat and Felicia. After giving a brief introduction about themselves as individuals and as Second City they set up their first improv scene which they dubbed “three for the process of one.”

The group broke off into three groups. It then took audience suggestions about a phobia, profession and type of relationship for each group to improve. The catch was that during a scene if a group clapped, they would pick up the last line of dialogue that was said and use that as their first line to start or continue their scene.

The way the group transitioned flawlessly from skit to skit was captivating and kept the audience’s attention.

“My favorite part about tonight was just how the group flowed together,” said Alonna Baisden, the vice president of Eastern’s improv group Hello Dali! “It is like the scene from scene transition and people would be like swapped out with different partners and it wasn’t weird it was all-natural.”

The show had a variety of different sketches, creative and interactive songs and a game show.

The game show was called “your first date.” The group picked a couple from the audience, asked them a few questions, and then acted out the date.

The couple they found were two elementary teachers who had been together for 22 years. After asking them questions about their first date like where they went, what they saw in each other, and so on, a member of the group brought them a device that had a bell and a horn. Every time the group did something right that the couple did on the date, they would ring the bell and every time they did something wrong the couple would honk the horn.

The astrology song “What’s your sign” sung by the three female group members was another interactive skit that got the crowd going

The muses singing the song would find an audience member, ask them their zodiac sign, and then freestyle about them.

For example, an audience member named Roger happened to be a Gemini and after singing the hook of the song group member Annie began yelling at him about being dirty because all Gemini are dirty. It was all done in playful fun.

After a 15-minute intermission the show began to wind down with the biggest moment of all, the fake proposal.

In a skit that took place around the time of cowboys and spurs, four women were looking for a mate and one group member, Felicia, was chosen by the wealthy cowboy, Chase.

In the skit, there is a proposal scene but Chase breaks character and begins to talk to the crowd. He claimed that he and Felica met in Second City, they fell in love, and he loved being able to do what he loved with the one he loved. He ended his speech by claiming it was their 5-year anniversary and got down on one knee and proposed.

The audience was in awe, the group members were in shock and the applause could be heard outside the building. It was not until Felicia stormed off and came back to tell the crow they broke up four years ago, so there was no reason he should be proposing.

The show ended with a song called “Taste of Chicago” which was an ode to the city of Chicago and everything that comes from it whether it be deep dish pizza or the CTA bus.

When the lights faded out to black and back in for the last time Second City took a bow, thanked the audience and wished everyone a good night.

Although he came for work, usher Corbin Cox enjoyed the show.

“I’m not usually like a huge improv comedy fan,” Cox said. “So, I was like really surprisingly into that.”

Charleston residents Tim and Melissa Wheeler had a great night and enjoyed the show.

“I thought the improv was funny like that, they brought some of the local areas into their comedy,” Melissa said. “I thought that was fun.”


Alexis Moore-Jones can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].

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About the Contributors
Alexis Moore-Jones
Alexis Moore-Jones, Feature Reporter
Alexis Moore-Jones is a senior broadcast journalism major. This is her first year at The News.
Cam’ron Hardy
Cam’ron Hardy, News Editor
Cam'ron is a junior journalism major. He previously served news editor and campus editor at The News. 

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