Just announced last night, The UCB4 (Amy Poehler, Matt Besser, Matt Walsh, and Ian Roberts) announced the closure and sale of the second LA based home of the Upright Citizens Brigade located near Thai Town on Sunset Blvd. The massive complex was bought and refurbished from an abandoned rehab center six years ago and represents a big step forward for UCB as a theater, institution, and company. There were three stories that housed a main stage, a training center, studios for film/video/podcast, cafe, lounge/second stage, and valet parking.
It was a big undertaking for UCB, but it was a bright, shiny, new home for one of the most recognizable brands for comedy in the country. The ever-enduring COVID-19 pandemic has forced a sale and subsequent closure of the theater since mortgage payments couldn’t be made with only so much revenue coming in from virtual classes (especially as it it’s still very murky as to when and how live venues will be allowed and have guidance to safely reopen).
Fortunately, UCB plans to keep their longstanding first location on Franklin Ave, the tiny black box theater that is just the main stage and nothing else, open as they also transition to a non-profit. If UCB Franklin does manage to reopen on the other side of COVID-19, it will be the Upright Citizens Brigade’s only physical location (down from 3 & 1/2 of them pre-pandemic).
While it had to go through its own shake-up and reckoning earlier this year to rid itself of toxic practices and institute true inclusion and diversity, UCB still represents a major pillar in comedy and we can only hope that it will keep getting to fulfill that role going into the future.
An update from the UCB4 pic.twitter.com/QN1lmjvHle
— UCB Theatre LA (@ucbtla) December 24, 2020