Every single person in my family loves comedy. Whether it’s stand-up or improv, on television or in person, we just love it.
That’s why, when the fine folks at ComedySportz offered us complimentary tickets (with no obligation to write about it, I might add), it was like Hanukkah around here. We caught the show last week, and it was a total riot.
Upon entering the building (ComedySportz is located at 929 W. Belmont), we were directed upstairs to the bar and waiting area, where we looked at a wall display detailing the history of ComedySportz Chicago and hung out for a bit before the house opened.
When it was time for the doors to open, we were ushered to our seats around a little table near the front. Even those in the back rows had a great view: the theater is intimate and there are truly no bad seats.
ComedySportz isn’t just a straight improv show: there are two teams (red and blue), a referee, and an announcer.
This combination of players and roles absolutely made the show completely hysterical. I hadn’t laughed that much in a long time. And they take the “Sportz” part of their name very seriously: we even had to stand and sing the National Anthem before the show! Once everything gets going, the teams compete in different games and earn points based on how loudly the audience applauds them. At the end, the winning team earns a trophy.
At our show, the announcer was witty and absolutely hilarious. I’m sure the show would’ve been funny had he not been there, but his presence (and random commentary) took the show to a whole other dimension. He also operated the television screens up front (giving hysterical sound effects to random slides showing cats and other animals), as well as the Applause-o-meter.
The show was very interactive, too: Ref Tim asked the audience for suggestions at game time, and we also helped him eliminate players when it was necessary.
Though the theater offers late-night shows that are much more bawdy, our showtime was completely family-friendly. In fact, there is a “Brown Bag Foul” issued when a player curses or is a little over-the-line (at our show, it was never used). If a player gets the Brown Bag Foul, he or she is forced to wear a brown bag on his or her head until the end of that game. The brown bag seems to keep the audience under control too, as Ref Tim told us that they don’t hesitate to use it on the audience when necessary.
All in all? SO MUCH FUN. Almost too much fun. We can’t wait to head back to catch another show!