Today we welcome Anne Libera and Kelly Leonard on the show for an especially fun and playful look at the world of improv comedy! Anne and Kelly are world class improv instructors and ambassadors who have a long history at The Second City, the world’s first ever on-going improvisational theatre troupe. The Second City has turned out notable performers like Tina fey, Stephen Colbert and Seth Meyers. Topics revolve around improv as it relates to mindfulness, creativity, cognitive reframing, authenticity and more. We also learned a lot from this interview about how improv can be used in everyday life, and we still get a kick out of the story we improvised involving the destruction of Purple Popsicle Man! We thank those listeners who take a moment to leave an honest iTunes review – it helps us hone our craft!
“Kelly Leonard is the Executive Vice President of The Second City and The President of Second City Theatricals. He has worked at The Second City since 1988 and has overseen productions with such notable performers as Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey, Steve Carell, Adam McKay, Seth Meyers, Rachel Dratch, Amy Poehler, Jason Sudeikis, Keegan Michael Key, Rachel Dratch, Amy Sedaris and a host of others. Mr. Leonard co-founded Second City Theatricals, the division of the company that develops an eclectic array of live entertainment all over the world. Recent productions include “The Second City’s A Christmas Carol: Twist My Dickens” with Center Theatre Group in Los Angeles and “The Second City Guide to the Opera” featuring Renee Fleming and Patrick Stewart with Lyric Opera Chicago. Mr. Leonard also brokered the deal that brought The Second City to the high seas where the company maintains full time ensembles aboard six Norwegian Cruise Line Ships. Mr. Leonard lives in Chicago with his wife Anne Libera and their children Nick and Nora.” Blurb taken from secondcity.com
“Anne Libera has worked with The Second City since 1986 and has taught in The Training Center since 1991. Her book, The Second City Almanac of Improvisation, is published by Northwestern University Press. For The Second City, she directed The Madness of Curious George and Computer Chips and Salsa, the Theatre on the Lake productions The Second City Goes to War and The Second City Looks at The Windy City, as well as touring company productions that have appeared all over the United States, in Edinburgh, Scotland and Vienna, Austria. Outside of Second City, her directing credits include Bunny, Bunny for Illinois Theatre Center and Stephen Colbert’s one man show Describing a Circle at Live Bait. She has been an artistic consultant to Chicago’s Museum of Science and Industry and is on the part-time faculty of Columbia College. She has reviewed theater on WGN radio and written for the NPR news quiz show Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me. Anne serves on the governing board for Gilda’s Club Chicago.” Blurb taken from secondcity.com