Chicago’s Second City and TDF Partner to Make Famed Improv Theatre Accessible

Chicago News   Chicago’s Second City and TDF Partner to Make Famed Improv Theatre Accessible
Open-captioned performances for Deaf and hard-of-hearing theatregoers will take place throughout the 2018–2019 season.

Chicago’s Second City Improv Theatre, which has given rise to such comedic talents as Tina Fey, Catherine O’Hara, Amy Poehler, Martin Short, and Stephen Colbert, has partnered with TDF to expand its reach to Deaf and hard-of-hearing audience members.

Second City will present at least seven open-captioned performances during its 2018–2019 season, beginning with the September 13 performance of Gaslight District.

Open-captioned performances incorporate projections of the text on the side of the stage, which displays word-for-word what performers are saying in real time, as well as describing the corresponding music and sound effects.

Currently scheduled open-captioned performances include She the People (October 14); The Good, The Bad and The Ugly Sweater (December 11); Second City’s 107th Mainstage Revue (January 30, 2019); The Best of the Second City (March 18); Improv Comedy Hour (April 15); and The Second City’s 43rd e.t.c. Revue (May 19).

“Second City is adapting traditional technology in a new way to caption live improv and comedy, which is rare and thrilling. For the first time, guests who are deaf or hard of hearing are able to laugh along with the show at the very same time as everyone else in the audience,” says Second City Producer Jesse Swanson, who is also part of Second City’s Accessibility Committee.

For a complete listing of The Second City’s accessibility services in Chicago and the current open-captioned performance schedule and tickets, visit

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