Influences of Past Comedians and Current Events on Modern Sketch Comedy

by Noel Hoffman
Theatre
Faculty advisor: Dr. Michael Whitlatch

Shows like Saturday Night Live and MadTV, among others, display today's sketch comedy themes and popular tendencies. As well as being extremely entertaining, sketch comedy today is largely influenced by the comedians of the past, yet driven by the events of today's society. My presentation will display research done this semester in conjunction with knowledge gained last semester in the Comedy Studies Program in Chicago at The Second City comedy improv theater. This research will display the dual presence of past comedians' works and influences of current news events that are present within today's sketch comedy.