The Conservatory is The Second City's professional training program, a deep and intense study of our cornerstone process of using improvisation to develop sketch comedy. This program creates artists who can find and create good ideas, develop them with an ensemble, and perform them with courage and commitment.
Our core Comedy Writing program is a yearlong course of study introducing students to the fundamentals of sketch comedy writing and culminating in a one-act sketch comedy show performed by top Training Center talent and produced by the writing students themselves.
Whether you want to get better at writing for yourself or for others, this program is for you!
Study the essential tools to get your own improv show or sketch revue on stage! Learn directing techniques, marketing strategies, and lighting design for your next production.
Discover your unique comedic voice in Second City’s Stand-Up and Storytelling courses. Stand-Up uses an improvisational approach to the creation and delivery of solo comic material. Craft your set, learn joke construction, and discover how to navigate your first open mic.
Storytelling courses help bring structure and craft to autobiographical stories in compelling ways. Many Stand-Up and Storytelling courses end with a casual showcase of student work.
The Acting Program empowers students with the necessary core skills to take responsibility for their own growth and learning as an actor. This program offers a unique method of acting that enables students to discover skills found in the physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual aspects of the human condition.
This program is great for beginners or actors who have been out of the classroom for a while.
The Second City Music Program is dedicated to helping students explore comedy’s unique relationship to music through voice, instruments, improvisation, and songwriting.
Discover what actors need to get started in the world of voiceover. Learn about mic technique, demos, the difference between narrator and character reads, rates, tips, tricks, and resources for building your career in the voiceover scene.
The Advanced Improv Program places more specific and specialized material in front of a more advanced student. These are great classes for the working actor. Offerings include improvisational acting, scene work, and long form.
Rules fall away and satirical points of view come to the forefront, preparing students for work at The Second City and beyond.
Whether you're a seasoned performer or new to improvisation, these acting lessons incorporate seamlessly into anyone’s base improv knowledge and experience. Students need only bring a willingness to explore the serious business of being funny while not taking themselves too serious in the process.
Unlike any other course of study in content, scope, or resources, Comedy Studies provides a unique opportunity to study full-time at The Second City for an entire semester. This program is developed and taught by the experts in comedy at The Second City Training Center in Chicago, with college credit provided by Columbia College Chicago.
The Harold Ramis Film School at The Second City is the first and only filmmaking program of its kind. Over the course of the year, students are exposed to comedy theory, the ins and outs of comedy film production, screenwriting, improv, and master seminars with A-list industry pros.
Who is the ideal student? Anyone who loves comedy and has a tireless need to create. Whether you’re just graduating from college or are looking to make a career leap, people of all experience levels and backgrounds are welcome here.