Margaret Hicks Discusses Chicago Comedy: A Fairly Serious History

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Margaret Hicks discussed her book Chicago Comedy: A Fairly Serious History (History Press) at Quimby's Bookstore on 5/28/11.

Chicago has developed an international reputation for split sides and slapped knees. The “Chicago Style of Comedy” evolved from nineteenth-century vaudeville, through the rebellious comics of the 50’s, and into the improvisation and sketch as well as stand-up that is ushering in a new millennium. Drawing on material both hilarious and profound, Chicago Comedy: A Fairly Serious History touches on what makes Chicago different from other cities and how that difference produced some of the greatest minds comedy will ever know: Amos and Andy, Jack Benny, Lenny Bruce, Del Close, John Belushi, Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert and so many, many more.

Margaret Hicks is a professional tour guide in Chicago, who has been giving walking tours in the loop (like her tour of Old Town offered through the famous Second City Comedy Club) since she completed the Chicago Architecture Foundation’s docent program in 2004. She maintains her own website at and has had years of experience in the Chicago comedy scene working at improv theaters and stand-up clubs.

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