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Preview: TBS ‘Just for Laughs Chicago’ Kicks Off on June 11, 2013

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CHICAGO – The great city of Chicago can’t stop the funny this week. The TBS “Just for Laughs Chicago” comedy festival returns for another hilarious six days. Highlights include performances by Russell Brand, John Hodgman, Seth Meyers, Bill Maher and the legendary Chicagoan Bob Newhart.

But that’s not all. Every day through Sunday, June 16th, venues all over the city will be open for a variety of acts, in both types and sizes. HollywoodChicago.com has compiled the highlights of each day, with both the name acts and something more Chicago-centric to celebrate one of comedy’s funniest American cities. For a complete schedule, including ticket buying information, click here.

Russell Brand
Russell Brand at “Just for Laughs Chicago” 2013
Photo credit: TBS


Star”iO Theater Presents TJ & Dave”

The iconic Chicago improvisation duo – T.J. Jagodowski and David Pasquesi – now nationally known through their hilarious commercials for Sonic restaurants, gets a showcase on the first night of the festival. June 11, 7p, Stage 773 - The Box, 1225 W. Belmont Ave.

Star”Secret Big-Time Local Comedy Showcase”

After TJ & Dave, no need to move venues, as the best of Chicago stand-up comics take the stage. June 11, 9:30p, Stage 773 - The Box, 1225 W. Belmont Ave.

Susan Messing
Local Legend Susan Messing at “Just for Laughs Chicago” 2013
Photo credit: TBS


StarRussell Brand

The anarchistic Brand – most recently seen on his talk show “Brand X:” – brings his unique comic stylings to the Windy City. June 12, 7:30p, The Chicago Theater, 175 N. State St.

Star”The Whitest Kids U’ Know”

The cult sketch comedy troupe makes a live appearance, after finishing five seasons of their IFC Network show, and have just completed their first film, “The Civil War on Drugs.” June 12, 7:30p, UP Comedy Club, 230 W. North Ave.

Star”Messing with a Friend”

Improvisation goddess Susan Messing leaves her usual Annoyance Theater spot (every Thursday) to expand her conceptual vision. The “friend” that will get inside her improv sphere? “Saturday Night Live’s” Tim Meadows. June 12, 9:30p, Stage 773 - The Box, 1225 W. Belmont Ave.

David Cross
David Cross & His Super Duper Pals at “Just for Laughs Chicago” 2013
Photo credit: TBS


Star”David Cross & His Super Duper Pals”

The “Arrested Development” star brings some friends along, including Chicago favorite Brian Posehn, in a showcase on Thursday night. June 13, 7:30p, The Chicago Theater, 175 N. State St.

Star”John Hodgman”

Subtitled “Featuring as Celebrated Humorist Josh Hodgman in: JOHN HODGMAN TONIGHT!” The wry and witty “Daily Show” correspondent will explain it all to you at this not-to-be-missed spectacular (I just made five bucks from John).June 13, 7:30p, Park West, 322 W. Armitage Ave


Back to Chicago after their first season on “Saturday Night Live,” Tim Robinson, Cecily Strong and Aidy Bryant do five shows throughout the week. June 13 (10:30p only), June 14 & 15 - 8 & 11p, Park West, 322 W. Armitage Ave.


StarSeth Meyers

The “Saturday Night Live” head writer, Weekend Update anchor and soon-to-be star of “Late Night” on NBC hosts special guests Al Madrigal and Hannibal Buress in this comedy showcase. June 14, 7:30p, The Chicago Theater, 175 N. State St.

Star”The Sullivan & Son Comedy Tour”

The stars of the TBS hit show “Sullivan & Son” – including lead actor Steve Byrne – team up for a showcase at “Just for Laughs Chicago.” June 14, 10p, Park West, 322 W. Armitage Ave.

Star”Alone: Chicago Best Solo Acts”

The Playground, a Chicago improvisation club, hosts, for the fifth straight year, this show featuring the best solo performance acts in the Windy City. June 14 & 15, 7p, Stage 773 - The Box, 1225 W. Belmont Ave.

Bob Newhart
Bob Newhart at “Just for Laughs Chicago” 2013
Photo credit: TBS


Star”Bob Newhart Live”

Bob Newhart, a Chicago native son and a living history of late 20th Century comedy, in virtually all media, returns to the scene of his start in a rare stand-up event for “Just for Laughs Chicago.” June 15, 7p, The Chicago Theater, 175 N. State St.

Star”Artie Lange”

One of the true bad boys of comedy, from MAD TV and The Howard Stern Show, comes to the Chicago festival to no doubt lay it on the line. June 15, 9:30p & 11:59p, Park West, 322 W. Armitage Ave.

Star”Best of Chicago”

B. Cole hosts this array of Chicago stand-up talent at a popular southside comedy club. June 15, 10:30p, Jokes and Notes, 4641 S. King Drive

Bill Maher
Bill Maher at “Just for Laughs Chicago” 2013
Photo credit: TBS


StarBill Maher

The HBO “Real Time” host brings his political and observational comedy to the Chicago Theater stage, to close the “Just for Laughs Chicago,” 2013. June 16, 7:30p, Chicago Theater, 175 N. State St.

The TBS Network Presents “Just For Laughs Chicago” 2013, Tuesday, June 11th through Sunday, June 16th. Click here for FULL schedule and ticket information.

HollywoodChicago.com senior staff writer Patrick McDonald

Senior Staff Writer

© 2013 Patrick McDonald, HollywoodChicago.com

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