Making Laughs

Libby Hemphill, Assistant Professor of Communication and Information Studies at the Illinois Institute of Technology, will be presenting "Making Laughs: Exploring Social Networks from Second City, Saturday Night Live, and the Big Screen," on April 10.

The presentation is from 12:00 to 1:20 PM at the Harris School of Public Policy.

Chicago's Second City has a long history of producing comedy superstars, many of whom followed alums John Belushi, Dan Aykyrod, and Gilda Radner to NBC's Saturday Night Live (SNL). SNL alums, in turn, have also gone on to large screen success. Mike Myers, Tina Fey, and Steve Carrell are just a few of the recent Second City and SNL alums to enjoy such success. In this talk, I'll use the casts of the Second City Chicago and Saturday Night Live to examine the role of social networks in the production of comedy. Actors and their networks are often used to illustrate network phenomena such as "small worlds" or as fodder for party games such as "Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon". In this talk, we'll look specifically at comedy actors and explore whether their associations in one area (e.g., on stage) impact their associations or success in another (e.g., Hollywood).

For more information, visit the Cultural Policy Center page and their site.