Skip to primary navigation Skip to content Skip to footer

BOOM CHICAGO ALUMNI

SETH MEYERS, JORDAN PEELE AND MORE

Seth Meyers
SETH MEYERS

Seth Meyers began his career at Boom Chicago where his shows attracted the attention of Saturday Night Live scouts. After a 13 year stint at SNL, nine of which were head writer, he was given his own Emmy Award winning TV show Late Night with Seth Meyers. His A Closer Look segments are watched around the world and provide a smart, insightful and very funny take on US politics. Seth was named one of Time magazine’s 100 Most Influential People in 2014. Seth’s recent Netflix special, Lobby Baby, is one of the most watched comedy specials on that network in 2019.

Seth hosted the White House Correspondents Dinner in 2011 where many say his scathing takedown of Donald Trump caused him to run for president. Seth owes us all an apology for that.

Seth also executive produced and lent his voice to Hulu’s animated superhero show The Awesomes, which ran for three seasons. In addition, he joined forces with SNL alums Fred Armisen and Bill Hader to create the critically acclaimed docu-parody series Documentary Now which has its fourth season in 2020!

Jordan Peele bw
JORDAN PEELE

Jordan Peele met Keegan Michael Key at the 2002 Comedy Swap where Boom Chicago switched stages with Chicago’s legendary Second City. The two went on to create the very influential sketch comedy show Key and Peele on Comedy Central, where Boom alums Becky Drysdale and Colton Dunn were on the writing team.

Jordan went on to direct Get Out, one of the most influential films of 2017. His movie received four nominations at the 90th Academy Awards: Best Director, Best Picture, Best Original Screenplay and Best Actor. Peele won the Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay.

He received another Academy Award nomination for Best Picture for producing Spike Lee’s BlacKKKlansman in 2018. Jordan directed, wrote and produced the acclaimed horror film Us (which was also a great walk-through haunted house at Universal Studios). He is involved in too many projects to mention (a voice in Toy Story 4, producer of the new Twilight Zone, role in Fargo), but he returns to the big screen as a director in 2020’s Candyman.

Amber Ruffin 625×415 bw
AMBER RUFFIN

After Boom Chicago, Amber joined the writing staff of Late Night with Seth Meyers in 2014. When she joined the show, she became the first black woman to write for a late-night network talk show in the United States. Her ‘Amber Says What’ and ‘Jokes Seth Can’t Tell’ have made her a standout performer in her own right.

NBC agreed and she will launch her own talk show The Amber Ruffin Show on their streaming service Peacock in 2020.  

Ike Barinholtz bw
IKE BARINHOLTZ

Ike Barinholtz launched his career with a two year stint at Boom Chicago in 1999. He left for a five year run on the famous MAD TV (with fellow Boom actors Josh Meyers, Nicole Parker, and Jordan Peele).   

Since then, he acts, writes, produces and directs in films and TV series like Mindy Project, Suicide Squad, Bad Neighbors, Bad Neighbors 2, Sisters, Central Intelligence and Blockers. 

In 2019 the highly anticipated The Hunt, a political-social-action-comedy where blue state liberals are forced to hunt red state conservatives was not released due to tweets from President Trump. He is currently in discussions to reboot the Beverly Hills Cop franchise. 

Jason Sudeikis bw
JASON SUDEIKIS

After leaving Boom Chicago, Jason Sudeikis has gone on to an exciting career that included years on Saturday Night Live. Afterwards, he appeared in films and series like Downsizing, Horrible Bosses, We’re the Millers, Hall Pass, and Angry Birds Movie 2.

His next project is as the lead character in Ted Lasso, a 2020 Apple TV+ series about an American soccer coach who leads an English team. That show also features writing and acting by Boom alum Brendan Hunt and is directed by ex-Boomer Joe Kelly.

Michael OT comedy
MICHAEL ORTON-TOLIVER

After leaving Boom Chicago Michael Orton-Toliver started the Free Association, which has grown to become London’s premiere long form improvisation theater in London. In 2018, Boom Chicago partnered with the FA, to bring their famous training curriculum to Amsterdam.

Mike co-created and co-wrote the UK show Borderline which was a huge hit on BBC5 in 2016-7. He then created his own writing and production company in London which is working on various projects and formats in the US and UK. 

Kay-Cannon Boom Chicago
KAY CANNON

After her Boom days, Kay Cannon was a very in demand writer and producer working on seminal TV shows like 30 Rock, New Girl and Girlboss and the three Pitch Perfect films. The first two were great!

She then moved on to directing the groundbreaking and hysterical Blockers which changed the politics of teenage sex comedies to be more modern and female positive while still being raunchy and raw. Indeed, recent comedies like Booksmart seem to live in the social world created by Kay earlier in Blockers.

She is currently in London working on her next feature a reboot of Cinderella which is due in theaters in 2021.   

colton dunn
COLTON DUNN

Tami Sagher wrote and produced many famous TV shows like Inside Amy Schumer, 30 Rock, Orange is the New Black, Broad City, How I Met Your Mother and Girls and Broad City.

She appeared in shows like The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Russian Doll and the films Knocked Up and Don’t Think Twice (about the New York improv scene). 

Her latest project is as a writer on Marry Me, a film starring Jenifer Lopez, Owen Wilson and Sarah Silverman that opens in theaters in 2020.

Tami Sagher
TAMI SAGHER

Tami Sagher wrote and produced many famous TV shows like Inside Amy Schumer, 30 Rock, Orange is the New Black, Broad City, How I Met Your Mother and Girls and Broad City.

She appeared in shows like The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Russian Doll and the films Knocked Up and Don’t Think Twice (about the New York improv scene). 

Her latest project is as a writer on Marry Me, a film starring Jenifer Lopez, Owen Wilson and Sarah Silverman that opens in theaters in 2020.

JOE KELLY

After his time in Amsterdam, Joe Kelly went on to write and produce on shows like Saturday Night Live, How I Met Your Mother and the Detroiters. 

He recently directed Boom alums Jason Sudeikis and Brendan Hunt in Ted Lasso, a 2020 series for the Apple+ network.

Other successful writer-performers include Liz Cackowski and Heather Anne Campbell (SNL), Allison Silverman (Daily Show, Colbert Report), Pete Grosz (The President Show), and Matt Jones (Breaking Bad).

On Broadway, Nicole Parker starred with Martin Short in Fame Becomes Me and in Wicked. Josh Meyers (Red Oaks, The Awesomes) starred with Paul Rubens in Pee Wee’s Playhouse. Spencer Kayden co-created Urinetown and was nominated for a Tony award for Don’t Dress for Dinner.