Second City to open first NYC location in Brooklyn come 2023


After 63 years of making Chicago laugh, this midwestern sketch and improv institution is setting up shop in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. 

Second City, whose Chicago mainstage counts Alan Arkin and the late Gilda Radner as alums, is expanding to New York for the first time with an 11,900-square-foot entertainment complex featuring a theater, seven classrooms, and a full-service restaurant and bar. It’s set to open next summer, though the address is yet to be announced. 

“New York City is a renowned hub for talent and culture, and we could not be more thrilled to bring The Second City’s unique brand of improv-based entertainment and education to the city as we continue to foster the next generation of comedy,” Second City CEO Ed Wells said in a press release. “We launch at a time of tremendous momentum for the brand.”

The new Brooklyn location will hardly be the comedy company’s second location. In addition to its Chicago headquarters, its Canadian branch, Second City Toronto, will celebrate its 50th anniversary next year. An outpost in Hollywood is also still operational, while ones in Detroit and Las Vegas have closed, the New York Times reports.

Second City, the iconic Chicago improv comedy club that's produced a long list of famous comedians over the decades, will surely entertain its forthcoming visitors in Brooklyn.
Second City, the iconic Chicago improv comedy club that’s produced a long list of famous comedians over the decades, will surely entertain its forthcoming visitors in Brooklyn.
The Second City
The Second City opened in Chicago in 1959, and has had other locations in cities across North America.
The Second City opened in Chicago in 1959, and has had other locations in cities across North America.
The Second City

The decision to add a New York address to its roster was significantly inspired by the end of COVID-19, Wells — who was only announced as the new CEO last month — told the publication. 

“As we came out of the pandemic and saw the resurgence of our stages and our consumer demand and the fact that we’re selling out every night, it became more immediate for us to start thinking about expansion,” he explained, adding “New York just feels obvious.”

The release further noted that Second City plans to “elevate comedy while developing the talent that New York City attracts” from its Brooklyn perch. The company has a reputation for incubating talent, and counts other celebrities including Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Amy Poehler and Keegan-Michael Key among its many other alums. 



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