Curbside Splendor Publishing and The Annoyance Theatre host “The Lit/Comedy Roundtable: Chicago Edition,” a moderated panel discussion exploring how (or if?) literature and comedy inform each other.
WHO: Leading lights of Chicago’s comedy, literary, and literary-humor scenes, including Mark Bazer, Kate James, Dave Reidy, Mike Thomas, and Claire Zulkey.
WHAT: Moderator Dave Reidy, author of two works of fiction that take the Chicago comedy scene as a backdrop, has assembled a panel of comedy people who appreciate books and book people who appreciate comedy to kick around questions that ask how literary writing and comedy influence each other. Panelist's books will be available for purchase & signing thanks to Unabridged Bookstore.
Bring a friend, have a drink, buy a book, and dive into a discussion of two of Chicago’s favorite art forms!
Moderator DAVE REIDY’s fiction has been published by Granta and other journals. His first book, Captive Audience, was named an Indie Next Notable Book by the American Booksellers Association. Comedian Keegan-Michael Key called Dave’s novel The Voiceover Artist “the most accurate depiction of the Chicago improv world that I’ve ever read.” Reidy lives in Chicago.
MARK BAZER is the host/creator of “The Interview Show,” a live talk show held monthly at The Hideout. He is also a contributing writer for Chicago magazine and the Editorial Director for Growth at Leo Burnett. Mark was the co-host of the recent WTTW series “My Chicago.” He has also written for the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Reader and others.
KATE JAMES is a Chicago based comedy writer and improviser. She has been writing and performing for various divisions of The Second City since 2006, including writing and performing at Lyric Opera Chicago and collaborating with Hubbart Street Dance. Kate is a founding member of the sketch comedy group Schadenfreude on WBEZ. The group also created IL-Informed, a political comedy television pilot that earned a Chicago Emmy nomination. Kate has appeared on Shameless, Playing House, and once made a video that went viral where she plays a very drunk Cubs fan.
MIKE THOMAS spent more than 14 years as an arts and entertainment staff writer at the Chicago Sun-Times. He is the author of You Might Remember Me: The Life and Times of Phil Hartman and The Second City Unscripted: Revolution and Revelation at the World-Famous Comedy Theater, and has written for Smithsonian, Esquire, Playboy, and others. A veteran chronicler of comedy, his numerous interview subjects include Louis C.K., George Carlin, Stephen Colbert, Phyllis Diller, Patton Oswalt, Joan Rivers, Jerry Seinfeld, Sarah Silverman, Jon Stewart, and many more.
CLAIRE ZULKEY runs the literary humor reading series Funny Ha-Ha and is the author of a few books for young people. She has written for publications like Fast Company, McSweeney's Internet Tendency, the AV Club, and the Wall Street Journal. She lives in Evanston with her family.