This morning, The Second City Training Center announced a monthly one-day master class to be taught by The Defiant Thomas Brothers. The first class will be March 5. Paul and Seth Thomas, who are brothers in last name and comedy if not technically blood, currently have a prestigious and rare open run at Second City’s new Blackout Cabaret Theater every Friday night at 7:30 p.m. Their class will be open to all.
Their current sketch show began last September. The Chicago Tribune‘s Chris Jones said they rival Key and Peele and are “similarly formidable writers” and Second City improv icon Rachael Mason said of their new show, “This is fucking huge.” And it is.
If you were around the Chicago comedy scene at the Defiant Thomas Brothers’ inception early last decade, you know that they had an 80-week run which culminated in a smash hit win at the 2005 HBO U.S. Comedy Arts Festival in Aspen where they were named Best Sketch Group and were signed by the William Morris Agency. At the Chicago Improv Festival, they were named Artists of the Year. When they broke up the next year, the news was met with sadness and dismay and mystery. Why did they break up at the pinnacle of their success? No one knows.
But they’re back and killing it every Friday night at Second City and just this past weekend, appeared at the invitation-only North Carolina Comedy Arts Festival.
I compare them to Peter Sellers, Steve Martin, the best of SNL and Key & Peele, too, but really, their observations about society’s nuts and dolts are very much original and theirs alone. They have an uncanny and unerring ability to morph before your eyes into everyday recognizable characters bursting with the absurdities we usually will ourselves to keep inside, but are secretly relieved to see acknowledged.
Paul and Seth kindly spoke with me here and Paul, also, here. Their insights are inside-the-mind revelations. If you’ve ever watched and laughed and wondered how comic creations come about, the two were very generous in explaining to the extent the magic can be explained at all.
They are now making themselves available up close and personal to share what they know. Tuition, amazingly, is only $25 (there’s also a $15 new student fee if you’re not already a Second City student). Enroll here.
As I was looking for the enrollment page, I came across information that Second City students get additional perks like discounts at the Music Box, the Book Cellar and more. As if it’s not enough of a perk to get to study at Second City with their top artists! Wow. Check it out here.
Please enjoy the Defiant Thomas Brothers at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival during their original run:
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