Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in Los Angeles

Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in Los Angeles (photo credit: http://www.ucbcomedy.com)

If you’ve seen any episode of “Saturday Night Live” in the past dozen or so years, it’s likely you’ve seen an alum of the Upright Citizens Brigade (UCB) in action. One of the comedy improv group’s founders, Amy Poehler, is no longer with the late-night TV comedy sketch show, but some of her peers are — Fred Armisen, Bobby Moynihan, Abby Elliott and Nasim Pedrad just to name a few (including a handful of “SNL” writers). The UCB’s team consisted only of Poehler, Matt Besser, Ian Roberts and Matt Walsh went it came to New York from Chicago in 1996. In 1998 the group landed their own show on Comedy Central for three seasons and on July 1, 2005, the improv artists officially opened the doors to their first UCB Theatre in Hollywood (after opening the NYC sister location in 2003). Here’s a quick guide to LA’s comedy home of improv, sketch and stand-up. — Nicola A. Menzie

Getting There:

Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre

5919 Franklin Avenue
Hollywood, CA 90028
(323) 908-8702
E-mail: la@ucbt.net
More Info

A word about the area from UCB: the theater is located at the foot of the Hollywood Hills across from the Scientology Celebrity Centre. The neighborhood is largely residential; please be quiet and courteous in the area and dispose of all trash properly.

Parking: UCB Theatre offers valet service at Franklin & Tamarind (in front of The Daily Planet & Bourgeois Pig) for a $5 fee.

See: Google Maps for driving directions and public transportation options | LA Metro Trip Planner

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Seeing A Show:

Several shows run nightly and some of them are free while the vast majority require a payment of $5, $8 or more (cash only). It’s recommended you make reservations well before the show as seats fill up quickly (it’s a 92-seat theater). You can try your luck with getting a seat the night of the show, but arrive early as standby seating is on a first-come, first-serve basis.

Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in Los Angeles

Players perform during a live sketch at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. (photo credit: UCB Comedy)

Although the UCB claims it is an “all ages” theater, many shows contain adult language and/or content. It is recommended you call or e-mail ahead of time to find out if a show is family-friendly (extremely rare). This also means the UCB Theatre is an alcohol-free venue (soda and water are available for a $1 purchase in theater lobby).

Audio and video recordings are prohibited, but non-flash photography is allowed.

Recommended nights to see a show: Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday

Popular Show: “ASSSSCAT” is free on Sundays (no reservations), $8 on Saturdays

See: the UCB Schedule

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Taking Classes

If you happen to walk away from a show thinking, “I could do that” or “I would love to do that,” then maybe you should sign up for classes at the UCB Training Center. The UCB is well known for churning out star comedic actors and writers for not only “SNL” but also for other popular TV programs like the “Colbert Report” and “30 Rock” to name a few. The classes are accredited, run for about two months and may turn out to be one of the best times of your life.

Sing up for an improv (about $350 per level) or sketch writing program (about $350-$375).

Contact School Manager Lindsay Hendrickson:
(323) 908–8702 (from 12 p.m. – 6 p.m. during the week)

See: FAQs about the UCB Training Center

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Staying Connected

UCB Touring Company
UCB Comedy — can’t make it to the show? Watch online.
UCB Theatre LA on Facebook & Twitter.

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What’s Nearby

The Museum Of Death
The Museum of Death in Los Angeles

The Museum of Death (photo credit: http://www.museumofdeath.net)

6031 Hollywood Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90028
(323) 466-8011

If, after the UCB Theatre show you feel as if you’ve laughed way too much and need to sober up a bit, then roll right over to the Museum of Death (about a 10-minute walk) where, for a $15 entrance fee, you can take in a macabre collection of occupied coffins, videos of autopsies, and so much more.

Sushi Ike

A piece of Bluefin Tuna (Maguro) sits on a sushi roll (photo credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

6051 Hollywood Boulevard, Suite 105
Los Angeles, CA 90028
(323) 856-9972

Whether you call it Sushi Ike or Ike Sushi, you’ll definitely be calling up your friends to tell them about this place after you’ve stuffed your face with some of the freshest and tastiest Japanese cuisine Ike has to offer. Expect to spend about $30-$40 — after all, it’s not exactly like the UCB Theatre shows break the bank. Right?

Blue Palms Brewhouse
Blue Palms Brewhouse in Los Angeles

Odell's Tap Room at the Blue Palms Brewhouse (photo credit: http://www.bluepalmsbrewhouse.com)

6124 Hollywood Boulevard
Los Angeles, CA 90028
(323) 464-2337

Maybe you need to get yourself in proper form for the UCB Theatre show by consuming some beer and sausages (for whatever reason)… or maybe just beer? Well the Blue Palms Brewhouse has two dozen brews (on tap and bottled) for you to choose from, like Craftsman Braggot (goblet, $6), Lost Abbey Red Barn (tulip, $6) and Moylans Dragoons (goblet, $6), for starters.

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