What is the Del Close Marathon?

The Del Close Marathon is the largest improv festival in the world, and was founded by the Upright Citizens Brigade in 1999. The first DCM had 36 shows in 30 hours at one venue. Over the past 20 years, DCM has expanded to 3 days, multiple venues, and hundreds of shows. DCM has slowly grown into a festival that not only celebrates the man responsible for turning improvisational comedy into its own art-form, but DCM is also an inclusive celebration that embraces and brings together voices from around the country and world all in one weekend through the use of the art form of comedic improvisation.

Who is Del Close?

Del Close is generally considered the father of Improv. He was the driving force behind improvisational comedy in Chicago for over 30 years, influencing Bill Murray, Tina Fey, Mike Myers, John Belushi, Chris Farley, and the Upright Citizens Brigade, to name a few. After Del's passing in 1999, the UCB started the Del Close Marathon to celebrate their mentor and keep alive his name and teachings for future generations.

UCB on Del Close

"He just challenged you to be better." - Matt Besser

"The best advice Del ever gave me was to be fairly close to yourself. Let your performance come through the rules so it was organic." - Ian Roberts

"He lived his life to make improv an art form unto itself," - Matt Walsh

"He was a comedy genius who had taught all of my heroes," - Amy Poehler

Why should I attend?

Because you love comedy. Because you are performing. Because it's the only place where you can see a high school improv team, a new team from Kansas, a reunited team from Chicago, a famous team from Los Angeles, and the hottest new team from Australia in one weekend. Because it will probably change your life. Because your roommate said so? If you’re interested in attending, we will have more info in Spring 2018!

AND these people also think it's cool.

"The DCM is the closest thing I've experienced to Woodstock" - Nick Kroll

"I feel like this is comedy comic con a little bit, but for me it's just a reunion. I get to see all my friends that I haven't seen in a while and that's the best." - Bobby Moynihan

"Three Days of Peace, Love, and Improv Mania" - Brooklyn Vegan

"DCM has become a glorious 56-hour improv binge where comedy celebs mingle with the little people, everyone laughs and nobody sleeps." - Huffington Post

"During DCM, dedicated comedy nerds stay up all night waiting for hours to see some of the funniest people in the world perform,' - Buzzfeed

How can I perform?

If you’re interested in submitting a show or team to perform, you can check dashboard.ucbcomedy.com for the most recent information. Submissions are not currently open. If you don’t already have an account, you can create one! Please do not create a new account if you already have one from a previous year.

Do you need volunteers?

If you’re interested in volunteering for the festival, we’ll have more info in Spring 2018!

Contact us

If you have issues with creating a dashboard account or the website: [email protected]

If you are a performer and have questions please email: [email protected]