iO West is the Los Angeles branch of iO Chicago, the famous comedy theatre that opened in 1980 and was originally named Improv Olympics. iO acted as a starting point for more than 5,000 actors and comedians, with an alumni list that includes Mike Myers, Amy Poehler, Tina Fey and the late Chris Farley. Founders Charna Halpern and the late Del Close are considered pioneers in modern improvisation, an art form that is absolutely pivotal in today's comedy. This theater in the heart of Hollywood opened in 1997. In addition to having shows and serving drinks from a full bar in this theater, it offers a swath of classes on improvisation and comedy.