On January 17, famed comedian and Second City graduate Michael Lehrer passed away due to ALS complications. He was 44 years old when he died. Chrissie Mayr, a comedian, paid tribute to him on Facebook by uploading two photos, the first of her standing with Lehrer and the second of a group photo on the set of Kill Tony. Chrissie stated:
“I am stunned by the death of Michael Lehrer. I met him in Los Angeles over three years ago, but what a brilliant light he is. Amazingly humorous, charming, cheerful and simply unforgettable. Rest in peace, friend.”
Angie McMahon, another comic, showed her grief by publishing a lengthy post depicting Lehrer, noting that they first met over dinner at Piper’s Alley and that Lehrer was performing ETC appearances at the time. McMahon said Lehrer used her theater for rehearsals and that she met his son Colin when Michael visited them in the summer. She went on to say:
“One night we were both playing solo acts at IO, and he wanted to go first so he could see me. We hopped around and paced the little green room for what seemed like an eternity, just performing bits and making each other laugh.
McMahon closed the play by hailing Lehrer as a gifted, witty, and odd person. She went on to say that she would always miss him. Despite having ALS, Lehrer continued to perform in a wheelchair for many years. To date, no arrangement has been made for a monument. A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to raise money for his son Colin, and it has already raised $15,900.
Twitter users pay tribute
Michael Lehrer has built a reputation over the years as a flawless comic. As news of his death spread, Twitter was flooded with tributes:
Michael Lehrer has accomplished and created what has never been done before and may never be again. We will feel his absence, but we are left with inspiration for what the human mind can do. We were all very lucky to have him. We love you forever Michael pic.twitter.com/puc4hndOfb
— #KILLTONY (@KILLTONY) January 19, 2023
“Where’s all that damn money for an ice bucket gone?”
RIP legend Michael Lehrer pic.twitter.com/88FLTxaAFW
— CaptainDoubleDown (@CaptDoubledown) January 19, 2023
Michael Lehrer was known for his performances on several occasions.
Michael was a member of The Second City, which also featured Chris Witaske and Tawny Newsome. His performance on the New Faces of Comedy program at the Just for Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal received critical acclaim from the audience. He created several sketch revues such as Sky’s The Limit and traveled with The Second City Touring Company. He later became a member of BTN’s Big Ten Tailgate and Sports Action Team. He also performed with the Brooklyn Brewery Comedy Tour, iO Chicago and Chicago Underground Comedy.
After being diagnosed with the degenerative condition in 2017, he continued to perform despite voice issues and was frequently featured on the Kill Tony podcast from 2019 to 2022. inspiring. Despite his difficulty speaking on stage, the audience praised him. Although extensive information about his educational history is not available, he graduated from Columbia College. He also took part in a few performances with his friend Seth Weitberg, and according to Weitberg, on most occasions, Michael appeared shirtless while cracking jokes.