The National Comedy Center just announced that it will celebrate its grand opening with appearances by Amy Schumer, Lily Tomlin, Saturday Night Live original season alumni including Dan Aykroyd and more, coinciding with the annual Lucille Ball Comedy Festival, August 1-5 in Jamestown, New York.
As featured on the cover of this month’s InPark Magazine, the 37,000-square-foot National Comedy Center visitor experience includes more than 50 immersive and interactive exhibits that tell the story of comedy from its origins through the present. It is the first non-profit cultural institution and national-scale attraction dedicated to the art of comedy.
JRA is providing planning, exhibit design, graphic design, executive media production, art direction, and project management for this blockbuster attraction, with fabrication by Adirondack Studios, AV integration by Electrosonic, media production by Cortina Productions, and exhibit lighting design by Abernathy Lighting Design.
The opening celebration will feature more than 50 events and 40 artists that include the innovators, creators, and legends of comedy.
“Each of these artists has played a significant role in shaping and redefining comedy as we know it today. From sketch to stand-up to TV to film, the landscape has been forever changed due to the creativity and, frankly, bravery, of Lily Tomlin and Amy Schumer. Laraine Newman, Dan Aykroyd, Garrett Morris and Alan Zweibel challenged the nation’s sensibilities about comedy in what they brought to air in 1975, introducing what became one of very few cultural phenomena to endure more than four decades,” said National Comedy Center Executive Director Journey Gunderson.
“Offering four brilliant minds from the show that broke the late night television mold is not only a glimpse into the creation of Saturday Night Live but also a sampling of the National Comedy Center‘s core mission to share the story of comedy,” notes Malachi Livermore, Director of Operations and Programming for the National Comedy Center.
In a special press briefing at the site on Friday, March 30, United States Senator Charles Schumer announced his push for a congressional designation for the Center. The new designation would officially make the National Comedy Center the nation’s cultural institution dedicated to the art of comedy, recognizing it as the only institution of its kind with the mission of preserving, protecting, and showcasing the art of comedy and its role in our culture.
The National Comedy Center also operates the Lucille Ball Desi Arnaz Museum, and for the last 25 years has produced the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival with performers including Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno, Lewis Black, Trevor Noah, Joan Rivers, Ellen DeGeneres, Paula Poundstone, Nick Offerman, Ray Romano, Bob Newhart, The Smothers Brothers and more than 100 other comedic artists.
Located in Jamestown, a city in Chautauqua County and Western New York, the National Comedy Center is in the region of Buffalo, Niagara Falls, Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Toronto.