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Just For Laughs Chicago – The Pet Projects Series

Comedy >

The Just For Laughs Group was founded in 1983 with a focus on comedy festivals, television productions, live shows and talent management. The Just For Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal is now the largest comedy event in the world and welcomes 2 million people every summer.

Brown Paper Tickets is proud to be ticketing this year’s Just For Laughs Chicago Festival‘s Pet Project Series at The Playground Theater from June 15 to June 17. The Pet Project Series is where some of Chicago’s finest comedians are given an hour to showcase their Pet Projects.

Here’s a list of this year’s Pet Projects:

Wednesday, June 15

Ginger Snaps How do you say yes, when the world has always said no? Two Gingers and One Oppressor… improv against all odds. Brendan Jennings, Brian Wilson and Emily Wilson Snap Back.


Cameron Esposito Local favorite Cameron Esposito presents Side Mullet Nation, featuring several short animated films, interspersed with live story-joke elements from this marvelous comedic storyteller. Get your mullets ready.

Tim Baltz Tim Baltz presents An Hour with Furd Nurbin. Furd Nurbin has been called many things: Essayist, Playwright, Ex-Boyfriend That Shoehorns References To Grilled Chicken Into Far Too Many Conversations. Please join him for staged readings of his latest essay, and a currently untitled one-act play, as he attempts to convince his father that a Master’s degree from Oberlin College is a worthy investment.

BriTANick Brian McElhaney and Nick Kocher are the sketch comedy duo BriTANick. They have been award-nominated by the 2011 inaugural Comedy Awards, tweeted about by Ashton Kutcher, reviewed by Roger Ebert and sexted by your mom. They kindly ask that you laugh loudly at their explosive mishmash of sketch and stand-up comedy.

Passes for the entire night available here.

Thursday, June 16

TOPAZ Topaz is Bill Boehler, Rex Graff and Saturday Night Live‘s Paul Brittain. TOPAZ was formed in 2004 to answer the question, “what if there was an improv group that was like Bob Seger punching you in the stomach during an argument in the bathroom?”

Steve Waltien Steve Waltien has had a bad year. Pretty much the worst. You’ve probably noticed. He’s so skinny. Come see him try and turn a corner his new one-man show ‘Scenes With Ghosts.’ Steve is a veteran of numerous shows at Second City and iO. He’s performed with groups like The Improvised Shakespeare Company and The Late Night Late Show, and is half of the duo Steve and Jordan whose 2008 show ‘Jordan and Steve are Steve and Jordan, Respectively’ was called “the best sketch show of the year” by the Chicago Tribune. Now he’s performing a solo show based on things he’s been thinking about this year. Storytelling meets characters meets Steve Waltien’s one-man show.


Teenager of the Year Teenager of the Year is the best in the world (especially Chicago and New York City). Better than everyone. Waaay better. In every category. Best comedy group, band, sports team, restaurant, car wash, etc., etc., etc., et cetera. Doesn’t matter, bro. They are the best EVERYTHING. They’ve totally blown minds at the San Francisco Sketchfest and the Traverse City Comedy Fest, had short films totally kill at SXSW, and totally defeated everyone in an comedy video competition of some sort. So, there. Also, who cares? The end. Teenager of the Year is Joe Avella and Tim Racine.

El Show Latino Featuring Comedians Joey Villagomez, Vince Acevedo, Elizardi Castro, Ricky Carmona, Joe Fernandez, Antonia Arcely, Alonzo Alcarez and the sketch comedy of Dominizuelan and The ESL Players.

ALONE, Chicago’s Best in Solo Sketch Comedy For the third year running, “Alone” unites the city’s best solo artists and puts them up in one place. Their rich character work and silly sensibilities unite for one hilarious evening, a taste of the great solo work happening all over the Windy City. The lineup includes Chris Witakse, Wendy Mateo, John Hartman, Pat Raynor, Wes Haney, Lauren Lapkus and MORE.

Passes for the entire night available here.