I finally got to a part 2. Yeah. Just some thoughts for people trying to or just starting to do stand-up comedy. They may be a part 3 if this one makes a 100 million at the box office.
The easiest way to get gigs is to go to gigs.
Showing up meeting the promoter, hanging around getting to know other stand-ups.
The conveyor belt of comedy being what it is, there always be a bunch of new people starting around the same time as you do. You’ll stick together with these people because you’ll see each other all the time at the shitty gigs for new people (You’ll see me there too.) Having a group makes it easier especially if you shy (like me).
Not just to the promoter, or other comedies. I mean the audience. I see new acts do this all the time.
You may know who you are but the crowd doesn’t. I have seen people tear into stuff that might work if the crowd knew a bit more about the person. Imagine watching a sitcom where all the gags are based just knowing the history of the characters. (Pretty much every sitcom after season 3.)
Repeat, Repeat and Repeat.
I hear this all time from newer acts. About doing “new” sets all the time. After doing their material for a month or something. Unless you’re doing improv it’s completely ok to do the same material. Once it working of course. Comedy is a craft. It’s about doing it over and over again. Figuring out what is funny, how to say it, pauses etc. Focus on building a solid five minute. Then seven minutes and so on.
Your main goal is to get better of course but set little ones along the way to motivate yourself. Some of the mine when I started out:
To do 100 gigs in my first year. I knew the only way to get better was by doing gigs so I set myself the target of a 100. I made it to 83 in my first year.
To gig in another country. I did this fairly early on by doing one in Northern Ireland. Yeah I know it’s kinda cheating since it’s only up the road but it is another country you Fenian bastard.
Here a list of places you can go when starting off:
Battle of the Axe. The ha’penny bridge inn, 42 Wellington quay temple bar.
Tuesday & Thursday from 9.30 pm. Contact: email@example.com
There is a least a 3-month waiting list to get on. Mention your new and can bring a crowd of people it might help speed it up.
Cherry Comedy. Whelan’s Bar, Dublin. Monday nights from 9.00 pm.
Contact: via the Facebook page. The lads are pretty sound about getting new people on but of course, there is a waiting list.
Jesters. The Front Door, 15 Dame Street. Wednesday night from 8.00 pm.
Contact: via the Facebook page or sign up on the night. Jester is a bit different. You can sign up in advance or on the night (Space is limited do) and you have to stay for the whole show. Everyone gets 5 minutes but the audience is mostly made up of other stand-ups.
There are a few more places. Contact me on Twitter on @SlumberingJ if you want to know them.
Catch me September 13 at The International Bar, Wicklow Street, Co. Dublin.
For the Irish Comedian of the Year Competition. From 9.00 pm.