Second City

Rockford Education Foundation searches for “Funniest Person in Rockford”

November 24, 2011 // 0 Comments

Winner to perform live with The Second City!  Think you’re funny? Here’s your chance to prove it! If your comedy routines kill at the water cooler or leave your family in stitches, you might just be the funniest person in town. Here’s your chance to prove your comedic skills as the Rockford Education Foundation (REF) and The Corner Bar launch a search for the “Funniest Person in Rockford.” The winner will perform live with famed comedy troupe “The Second City” during its performances for REF January 20 and 21, 2012, plus receive two VIP tickets to the show. While billed as the search for the “Funniest Person in Rockford,” the competition is open to anyone in West Michigan. Now through November 30, REF is accepting 1-3 minute video submissions at its web site ( On December 5, 20 videos will be posted to REF’s Facebook Page ( where fans will vote for their favorite videos through December 31. On January 2, 10 finalists will be named based on “likes” at the REF Facebook page. Those comedians will perform live at The Corner Bar on January 12 and a panel of judges will select the winner who will perform with Second City on January 21 and 22. Entrants must be age 18 or older and fill out an application and submit their video at video content must be family-friendly and comedy routines appropriate for all audiences. Tickets for The Second City are $35 and are available by calling REF at 616/863-6317 or through REF’s web site Event sponsorship opportunities are also available. The Rockford Education Foundation (REF) was established in 1991 to provide resources for increased educational opportunities for people of all ages in the Rockford Community. The REF is an independent, non-profit corporation, governed by a volunteer Board of Trustees from the community. Teachers, students, and community members with innovative ideas have received grants for wide-ranging, educational purposes. Grants are awarded twice yearly based on the merit of the request and its ability to promote educational excellence. For more information or ticket purchases, contact: Sue Arend, REF Administrator at 616-863-6317 or visit REF returns Second City for encore performances By CLIFF AND NANCY HILL When Chicago’s legendary comedy troupe, The Second City, last […]

REF returns Second City for encore performances

November 24, 2011 // 0 Comments

Keep Your Laughter Local  by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL When Chicago’s legendary comedy troupe, The Second City, last appeared in Rockford in January of 2010 it was a sell-out from the “git-go”. Appearing then to headline the Rockford Education Foundation’s (REF) annual benefit concert, Second City returns again for 2 evening performances of their “Laugh Out Loud Tour” on January 20 & 21, 2012. “Second City was a sell-out when they last performed in 2010,” said Beth Dornan, REF Trustee. “Bringing them back for not 1 but 2 shows along with the added twist of allowing a local comedian the opportunity to perform with them is sure to mean another hit for the REF and even more money raised for educational grants for Rockford.” Let’s embrace a “think local” attitude here. Instead of taking our monies outside of the Rockford community to attend LaughFest 2012 in Grand Rapids in March, why not support the good works of the REF and laugh your sides out right here at home in the cozy confines of the Rockford High School (RHS) Auditorium. “During the 2-day January stay, as an added plus, the Second City troupe is doing two 2-hour workshops with RHS performing arts students. One workshop of 15 beginning level students and other of 15 intermediate level students all who will experience a good time participating in the creation of comedic skits along with touching on such topics as improvisational techniques, comedic timing, and the ability to harness creativity,” said Sue Arend, REF Administrator, adding, “This is a win-win for everyone involved, both students and teachers alike, and the entire Rockford community as well.” When Second City last appeared in Rockford, your reporters warned of a possible sell-out and sure enough it happened. Yes, there will be two performances during the upcoming January appearances but that doesn’t guarantee ticket availability. Ticket sales thus far have been brisk and we’d suggest placing your ticket orders sooner rather than later. Smiley faces are much preferable to sad faces, right? As we advised in 2010, Second City performance tickets would make GREAT Christmas gifts for that person who has everything, is hard to please, or is just a plain old Grump who needs a bit of hilarity in their life […]

REF concert tickets a great Christmas gift

November 18, 2009 // 0 Comments

A CAST FROM AN EARLIER SECOND CITY TIME—do you recognize anyone? Photo courtesy of DK/NY by CLIFF AND NANCY HILL Rockford Education Foundation (REF) Administrator Sue Arend and the gang at REF have gone outside the box and done themselves one better. In annually producing a mid-winter fundraising show, which featured mostly musical acts, this season REF has instead decided to bring a touring ensemble cast of Second City to Rockford. On Saturday, Jan. 23, Second City will star at the REF’s 14th Annual Benefit Performance. The iconic Second City bills itself as “a comedy powerhouse” and in celebration of 50 years of being recognized as America’s greatest comedy theater, they have taken their act on the road. Second City had its beginnings in 1959 in a small cabaret theater on the corner of North Avenue and Well Street on Chicago’s north side. It has since grown to become a comedy empire with resident theaters and training facilities in Chicago, Los Angeles and Toronto, currently enrolling over 3,000 students. Over the years, the cream of the crop have gone on to stardom on television and the big screen. Honing their comedic craft in Second City methodologies, recognizable superstars such as Alan Arkin, Joan Rivers, Gildna Radner, John Belushi, Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Martin Short, John Candy, Bonnie Hunt, and more recently Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Mike Myers, Steve Carell, Stephen Colbert, Tina Fey and many, many more have become household names. Over the years, the popular late-night NBC program “Saturday Night Live” could not have survived without a steady stream of Second City graduates. “Attendees at the Rockford show will see stars in the making as they perform a comedy review that satirizes politics, culture and news of the day,” said Arend. Speaking for himself, the male half of the reporting team recalls attending Second City performances in Chicago during the ‘60s that were “side-splitting and hilarious comedy.” Remember the performance will be held in late January, and who isn’t looking for an evening of laughter to escape, if just for a couple of hours, from another bleak Michigan winter?! Christmas is coming and if you are looking for a gift for someone who has everything or who is hard to please, why not surprise them—or indulge […]