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Williamsville, New York
December 3, 2003
Second City Toronto has given rise to some of the best comedians of the past generation -- need a list? Ever heard of Mike Myers? John Candy? Martin Short? Dan Aykroyd? Gilda Radner? Eugene Levy? Rick Moranis? Ryan Stiles? Colin Mochrie? Or the television show SCTV for that matter? You have this club to thank!
When in Toronto, this is a fun way for adults to spend an evening. Although the comedy sketches are very funny, this is not TV and there are no censors so leave the kids under 18 at home. The shows always have witty, punny names (like Arma-Get-It-On! and Psychedelicatessen), which almost never have any bearing on the show itself. At it's best, the sketches are topical and biting slice-of-life observation, and the improv section is red hot. At it's worst, they are half-baked and go on far longer that they need to. And of course, they riff on Canadian life and politics, which can leave Americans scratching their heads. Regardless, the troupes (which change personnel yearly) are always revved up and giving it their all. The Saturday late show is great because they do a free show afterward of improv and sketches in development. If you can stay awake, take advantage! Sundays, their equally funning touring troupe is in residence for the evening.
The Theatre itself is a beautiful two story brick affair, with the gift shop and ticket booth downstairs, and the bar and entrance to the mainstage upstairs. Lining the stairs are pictures of troupes past, and you'll have fun spotting comedians past in the alumni mural at the top of the stairs.
Drink prices at the bar are a little high as you'd expect at club venue, but not exorbitant. Grab your favorite quaff while you wait, but know that there is table service for food and drink in the theatre itself.
The theatre itself is a tiered semicircle of about 10 rows around the stage. Most are just fine seats, except at the extreme edges. If you go as a couple, expect that you will be sitting with another couple around the small, cramped tables. This is not a place for comfort, put you'll all settle in once the laughs start coming!
They do not have an online ticketing system. You can request tickets via e-mail or at 1-800-263-4485.
Go on! Go buy your tickets, and get ready for a wild, funny night!
From journal Americans who LOVE Toronto!
May 16, 2002
The show itself, called Psychedelicatessen at this May 11 showing, was quite funny, though we felt kind of bad for the Canadians by the end. There were a number of jokes highlighting Canadian image problems in relation to its giant neighbor. All in all, though, the cast was very good, the skits were quite strange (but funny), and a good time was had at least by the two of us.
For tickets and information: http://www.secondcity.com/01_03.asp?pid=01_03_02
We did the dinner and show package, dining at Leoni's Italian Kitchen next door to the theater. The combo package cost CDN$55.29 each on a Saturday night for the 8:00 show. Prices without the family-style Italian dinner would have been CDN$26.75 each. If you buy online, you will be charged a hefty transaction fee. Our order actually got lost from online, but we had no problem buying tickets that night to get in for dinner and the show.
From journal Springtime in Toronto