Broken hearts and funny bones add up to humor in The Second City's comedy show coming to Fargo

The cast of Second City's "It's Not You, It's Me." Timothy M. Schmidt / Special to The Forum
The cast of Second City's "It's Not You, It's Me." Timothy M. Schmidt / Special to The ForumTimothy M. Schmidt / Special to The Forum

FARGO — What’s the best way to get over a broken heart? Laugh it off.

“There’s an old saying that comedy equals tragedy plus time. I’ve found that to be very true,” says Lilliana Winkworth, a comedian with the Chicago-based comedy outfit The Second City. “If you have a broken heart, give it two hours and a glass of wine or six weeks and you’ll remember that one specific detail about your ex that was just hilarious. There’s humor everywhere.”

Winkworth and her Windy City comrades bring the laughs to the Fargo Theatre on Sunday night, Feb. 10, for a show that aims to tickle Cupid’s funny bone, “It’s Not You, It’s Me.”

Winkworth says the program is 70 percent scripted sketches and 30 percent improv, but all about falling in and out and maybe back into love again.

The show has only been running for about a month, but her touring team has been together for a year, creating a tight-knit group that knows how each other act and respond on stage.

Since 1960, The Second City has developed comedians like Alan Arkin, John Belushi, John Candy, Dan Aykroyd, Bill Murray, Tina Fey, Steve Carell and Stephen Colbert, among others.

Given the nature of her job is to make laughs happen, she thinks comedians and other creative types may be better equipped to handle something as disruptive as a breakup.

“I think any artist or anyone with a creative outlet has a nice way of getting through any kind of sadness because we can always put it into our writing, put it into our acting, put it into our comedy or just write a song about it,” she says.

While a lot of romantic comedies focus on the beginning or end of a relationship, Winkworth says even a long, strong relationship has some moments for laughs.

“I think there’s humor there in a couple that have been married and loves each other for 10 years but there’s still that one quirk about your husband or wife that just drives you crazy,” she says.

The cast of Second City's "It's Not You, It's Me." Timothy M. Schmidt / Special to The Forum
The cast of Second City's "It's Not You, It's Me." Timothy M. Schmidt / Special to The ForumTimothy M. Schmidt / Special to The Forum

A big fan of Nancy Meyers, the filmmaker behind romantic comedies like “The Holiday” and “It’s Complicated,” Winkworth is unabashed of her fondness for chick flicks.

“I think every comedy I love has an element of romance to it because I’m a romantic,” she says. “Hallmark movies are always good for a bad movie night.”

Finding humor in the dating scene is a bigger part of the process now with all of the matchmaking apps and sites, too, she says.

“You get to meet a bigger variety of people than you would without them,” Winkworth says. “Even if you don’t go out on a date, you get to look at that person’s profile and check that out.”

One thing that’s not quite as funny about dating in the modern age is looking for love in a time of significant political differences in the country.

“We all have trouble finding the humor in some things that are completely humorless when it comes to, you know, general human rights,” she says. “I think you get a lot deeper quicker. You get into those political conversations more on the first date that maybe you would’ve saved for later because everyone is so divided.”

That said, Winkworth is looking forward to meeting new people at the Fargo show. Her mother, Jill Selbo, is from Fargo and is coming back to meet family and friends at the show.

“People I’ve never met with very Norwegian names are coming, so that will be nice,” Winkworth says.

If you go

What: “It’s Not You, It’s Me” by The Second City

When: 8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 10

Where: The Fargo Theatre, 314 Broadway N.

Info: Tickets for this mature-audiences show are $31.50; https://jadepresents.com or 866-300-8300