Chicago Traveler Blog

Chicago Traveler Blog

Questing For Shangri-La: A New Show at Chicago's Annoyance Theatre

3/21/13 | by

The Annoyance Theatre is the Chicago destination for an evening that is guaranteed to be filled with humor and laughter. And guess what? They've got a new show coming out very soon!

Questing For Shangri-La

Anyone in need of a good laugh should check out Questing For Shangri-La, a new comedy show premiering at the Annoyance Theatre starting April 7, 2013. Tickets are $10 per person, and the show is scheduled to run until May 5, 2013.

Questing For Shangri-La is a one-man show written by and stars Scoop Skupien, a veteran of such hilarious Annoyance Theatre productions as “What Every Girl Should Know: An Ode to Judy Blume,” and “Co-Ed Prison Sluts;” the show is directed by Joe Canavale. Questing For Shangri-La is a retrospective on when Skupien and his wife boldly quit their jobs, sold their possessions and set out on what they hoped would be a fulfilling and enriching adventure of a lifetime.

As they travel to Thailand, the UK, South Africa, Brazil, Costa Rica and many other countries, it quickly becomes apparent to Skupien and the audience that this is not a typical travelogue. Fortunately for the audience, (and unfortunately for Skupien), this trip around the world is notable for the laugh-out loud encounters with locals and near-death experiences that occur.

Rather than a journey of self-discovery, the show is also filled with the extremely funny insights and observations the actor makes about himself, his marriage, Americans and foreigners. Eventually the couple returns full-circle by making their way back to Chicago, concluding this amusing show.

Playing now at the Annoyance Theatre:

My So-Called Afterlife is playing at the Annoyance Theatre from March 14th- April 18th, so if you're in town before Questing For Shangri-La starts, definitely check out this hilarious comedy about a boy who is transferred to Heaven after spending two decades in Hell.

About the Annoyance Theatre

The Annoyance Theatre came to prominence in Chicago 25 years ago when they originated their most famous show, Co-Ed Prison Sluts. This musical revue ran for 11 years straight, which is still to this day the longest running musical in Chicago. Co-Ed Prison Sluts featured many of the risque themes and language that quickly became the trademark of the Annoyance Theatre. The improv group relishes the lack of censorship imposed on their theater and material, and they are known for being the first improv group to create full-length plays and musicals from largely improvised material. Currently, they put on a series of zany shows that often feature satire, with titles like: Reality Recap Reunion, Skinprov, Kill Me I’m Irish, and My So-Called Afterlife.

Anyone looking to become better versed in improv should look to the Annoyance Theatre for instruction on improvisation. The classes range in skill-levels from beginner to advanced, and usually last for about 8 weeks. There are improv classes and more niche ones like Directing Directors and Directing Actors, so there is sure to be a class to appeal to every type of aspiring comedy performer out there.

The theatre itself is located on North Broadway Street in Uptown Chicago, and provides a small and intimate setting for all of their hilarious shows. Annoyance Theatre is also noteworthy for their fun bar, which has a relaxed vibe with some serious bargain drink specials. Patrons can listen to some music and play some board games at the bar while they wait for their show to start, or can even stop at the bar just to take advantage of the great prices without seeing a show. Whatever the reason for your trip to the Annoyance Theatre, a humor-filled good time is all but guaranteed.

What to Know:

You can find tickets to all shows at the Annoyance Theatre here.

All ages are welcome. This doesn't mean that all shows are uncensored and family-friendly, but you can decide for yourself if you want to treat your kids to this kind of comedy. Usually it's suggested that these productions are for kids ages 14 and up.

They've got some great drink specials at the bar, and $4 cocktails make every joke a lot more enjoyable.

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