February 1-3
McCormick Auditorium

March 1-3
Shanley Pavilion

Produced by Alex Schwartz
Directed by Devyn Johnson and Nabeel Muscatwalla

One-third improv, one-third sketch comedy, one-third rock 'n roll


2017-18 Cast

Featuring Maya Armstrong, Makaa Copeland, Jake Curtis, Jake Daniels, Devyn Johnson, Julianne Lang, Amara Leonard, Joey LiebermanNabeel Muscatwalla

Notable Alumni

  • Julia Louis-Dreyfus – 9-time Emmy award-winning actress/comedian: Saturday Night Live, Seinfeld, The New Adventures of Old Christine, Veep
  • Seth Meyers – Emmy award-winning writer/comedian/TV host: Saturday Night Live, Late Night with Seth Meyers
  • Dermot Mulroney – Actor: My Best Friend's Wedding, About Schmidt, Zodiac
  • John Cameron Mitchell – Golden Globe-nominated actor/writer/director: Hedwig and the Angry Inch
  • Ana Gasteyer – Actress/comedian: Saturday Night Live, Mean Girls
  • Kristen Schaal – Actress: 30 Rock, The Last Man on Earth, Bob's Burgers
  • Peter Grosz – Writer: The Colbert Report, Late Night with Seth Meyers; Actor: Veep, Sonic's "two guys" commercials
  • Spencer Krayden2-time Tony-nominated actress: Urinetown, Don't Dress for Dinner
  • Craig Bierko – Tony-nominated actor: The Music Man, UnREAL
  • Dan Patterson - Creator of Whose Line is it Anyway?
  • Pep Rosenfeld – Founder/artistic director of Boom Chicago


Founded at Northwestern in 1974 by producers Paul Warshauer ('76) and Josh Lazar ('75), the original Mee-Ow Show was the first performance in the newly constructed McCormick Auditorium in Norris University Center. Open to all students, the show was created in response to the "closed door policies" of the venerable Waa-Mu, NU's long running annual student-written musical. With a large cast and orchestra, Mee-Ow made for a long, cumbersome, and less than spectactular production, but set the stage for what would become one of the longest-running, student-created improvisational shows in history.

In 1976, due to poor reviews and a financial scandal, Mee-Ow was re-conceived by two of its cast members, Bill Nuss ('76) and Eugene "Dusty" Kay ('76), as an improv comedy show with a smaller cast, inspired by Chicago's Second City and Kentucky Fried Theatre. Kay and Nuss co-directed the '75 and '76 versions, which put the show back on the campus map. Since then, the show has been a staple of the Northwestern theatre and comedy scene. Its signature cat logo is a tribute to Northwestern's feline roots, mirroring the university's Wildcat mascot.

Mee-Ow alumni have gone on to perform and teach comedy at the country's top improv venues, including Chicago's Second City, Improv Olympic and the Annoyance Theater, New York's Magnet Theater, The P.I.T. and The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, and LA's Groundlings, iO WEST, and UCB West. Mee-Ow alumni also founded Boom Chicago in Amsterdam and created the popular television series Whose Line is it Anyway?

An extensive archive of the Mee-Ow Show, from its first show to the present, is maintained in the Northwestern Archives in the Deering Library in Evanston, IL. One of the original producers, Paul Warshauer, helps to maintain the archive. Cast members are encouraged to deposit their material for safekeeping in the archive which is open to the public.