I recall several members of SRK mentioning they dabble in standup, and a friend of mine [media=youtube]33QBTZU0hGM[/media] and was wondering if they’d be willing to help any others (such as myself) interested in getting into it.
How do you get into it?
How do you prepare?
What else do you need to do?
How do you deal with hecklers, and how often do you have to deal with em?
Meh, If you want to do it just go out and do it, finding an open mic probably isn’t that hard. The single biggest thing is making sure the distractions don’t get to you while you’re on stage, either through practiced repition or blocking them out.
still haven’t dealt with any actual hecklers, just drunk people.
It more than just being funny, it takes some patience and dedication and not taking yourself to seriously too.
Talk about stuff you think is funny, thats what everyone does, If someone is saying it on stage they probably at least think its funny, whether or not anyone else laughs.
As for flow try to start of with a good guaranteed laugh in the beginning is about all i can say, the longer into your time you go without somone laughing the harder it seems to get. Flow is completely dependent on your style of comedy.
Improv whenever you want theres no rules, but its probably not the best thing to try on your first time up, because you might get distracted and forget everything on stage, which i’ve seen happen.
This city has been horribly rainy for the last 7 days but I might go and try some new material out tonight, I have to figure cold wet people are alot less likely to be in a laughing mood which is part of why i snipped out on last week, Well that and a SF tournament.
For anyone considering trying it out just go for it, you couldn’t possibly be worse than half of the people trying comedy already, unless of course you’re completely unfunny and racist, in which case you’re probably only funnier than about than about 10% of the people already trying stand up.
i personally prepared for my 5 min set by just talking to myself and just remembering my jokes. i would be at work going over the joke in my head. but once your on stage be prepared for anything that could make you forget ie hecklers
Actually working on writing a set now. Been spending the last few days going over my comedy notes, reading reddit articles on writing comedy, etc… Kinda fucked that I started this thread back when I first joined. Had a half hour conversation with the dude who won Canada’s Top Comic (hosted by Sirius), last year, and it pretty much cemented the fact I wanna do this.
Still curious if any of you have given it a try, or currently are involved in open mic’s and standup comedy.
I thought about stealing some shit from Carlin and Hicks, then filling it up with my disgusting sex stories and go to an open mic.
Then I realized that that shit is rare in Germany and gave up.
This thread brought that shit back to mind though, guess I’m gonna write something down.
You should start by being funny. Most of your material is only going to be funny if you deliver it properly. The way you write things out on SRK don’t really lend themselves to laugh at what you wrote or how you presented it, its mostly funny because lol Sovi3t. So if you’re gonna draw from your life stories, you need to presenting them with a sense for punchlines and (in a ridiculously phrased statement) a way that honors their absurdity.
Let’s take the time you fucked a retard in the ass while on a trampoline. Now this may be that you just fucked a chick on a trampoline once or that you fucked a retard once, all I know is that there was fucking and there was a trampoline. It ends up with a chick shitting herself so you know that’s going to be gold. So do I go about presenting this in a way that is funny?
[details=Spoiler] You know I got into comedy to make money?
Well I got into comedy so I could drink for free. If I’m funny somebody will come along and say “Hey you were great, let me get you beer.” If I’m terrible somebody will come along and say “Hey you were terrible, have a beer before you kill yourself”. If I didn’t pay for it, that’s money in my pocket.
But fuck, that’s a bad way to look at things. Unfortunately after you drink so much, its the only way to look at things. Like the other night I fucked a retard.
Hey she started it. She was making eyes at me. I mean, she made an eye at me. The other one wasn’t sure where it was going. It was kind of like a chameleon’s eye looking for a juice box.
So here’s the situation. I’m at a house party. The time its around 3 beers and 2 shots o’clock. I know that once it gets to 5 beers and 6 shots o’clock I’m in danger o whiskey dick. So If I’m gonna fuck, it has to be know unless the somalian gets here with the cocaine. If he gets here then I’m good until 7 beers and 7 shots o’clock. That fucker is unreliable though, last time I asked him for the time he looked at the stars and told me the dog star just sat on the table.
Now one of two things are happening at this party: I’m either getting a woman to cover me in juices or I’m getting so drunk that I piss myself. Free is free, fucked is fucked and wet IS wet. I’m looking around the party at potential people. There’s a blonde surrounded by three guys, no good. There’s a brunnette with a nose ring and a 50’s dress. That’ll do it if it didn’t require 3 more beers to put up with the kind of issues she offers. But then out of the corner of my eye, who do I see? A beauty in a scooter and a pokemon shirt.
You may say “How did you know she was down to fuck?” Well I walked over, introduced myself, she licked her lips, drooled a little and pinched my left nipple. Had it been the right one, I would’ve walked away but its pinching the left one that lets you know its game. Now there’s only one problem: just where are we fucking? Its a two story house and stair + wheelchair is a bad combination. Can’t fuck in the living room because I don’t want to be rude. The kitchen is full of people trying to get drunk. Then I remembered that walking up to the house, I saw a trampoline in the back yard.
I’d do the rest but I’m kind of tired of writing. Either way that should give you an idea of what I’m talking about. You’ve definitely done enough wacky shit to fill a set. Right now you just have to work on your delivery which, from reading your posts, is gonna need work.
I practice jokes on my friends constantly. Even on SRK I’m trying shit out to see if it works or doesn’t. You have to start taking risks on jokes to see what works for you and what doesn’t. Easy way to practice material.
I’ve read your posts, you don’t know funny. You’re barely holding onto english.
I understand about delivery and such. I’ve spent like half a decade reading up on this and writing notes and researching. The way I write shit on SRK isn’t my A-game, and it’s the internet. Too easy to go the RockBogart route and just post gif’s you spent 4 seconds googling. And I’m usually drunk when I post here. Which is most of the time.
None of that is what happened, really. Her name was Trampy the Trampoline Whore. And that wouldn’t be a joke, that’s just a random story in the life of SoVi3t
I want to get into it because I love comedy, and I hate actual work, and I want to conquer my fear/hatred of other people.
It took me awhile to realize you were trying to be funny. A really long while.
I appreciate and understand the point. My issue right now is taking the notes I’ve accumulated, and sifting through the garbage, to find what works, and then taking that ‘what works’ shit and making it into actual jokes. Case in point, one of my notes is “I hate people who wear tapout shirts. You fat fucks should have tapped out of lasagna”. While it’s somewhat funny, it’s too short. So what do I do, do I lengthen it (and if so, how), do I use it as just a punchline in another joke, or what? I also have to look at some of the fucked up events of my life, and learn how to insert them, embellish them, and develop them into parts of my routine.
Same here, a lot of my shit comes across as hostile, which is kinda funny (to me at least). I have other forums I’ve been on longer where I’ve been up to the same horseshit. Plus I have all the stuff I’ve stolen off you fuckers.
But yeah, I am constantly writing shit down I say to friends and in public, I usually have a notepad or my cellphone to jot shit down.
I actually went and found my notes from when I first started taking notes, and I’m shocked at how fucking absolutely awful it is. Like maybe one good joke from several pages of awful.
I’m at a very weird phase in all of this. It doesn’t help that the years I spent in college have trained me to try to organize shit into categories, and I’m trying to do comedy with a somewhat mathematical approach.
I’ve been doing it in Malaysia for almost 3 years now. I’m not super popular or an expert or anything, but I’m good enough to support some of the local or international headliners, and can hold my own as a feature act.
Delivery is key, personality is key. If they buy your character, you win. You could half-ass the set, forget your material and still make it through 3 minutes (normal time allocation for newcomers at the open mics I’ve seen).
Don’t be too attached to what you say online or to your friends IRL. What’s funny at the coffee table or in written form may not translate well to the stage. Personally, I have a different comedy style compared to how I speak online and how I am on-stage and also how I am when just hanging with friends.
However! Taking notes is good, and even if the joke you make when with friends doesn’t cut it, the idea might be good so always try.
While I’m a fan of dark/hostile material, I find it’s hard to win crowds over without a certain amount of “goodwill.” They have to like you before they go, “Yeah, that’s fucked up, but it’s okay to laugh at that.” If I don’t “win” the crowd early, I avoid the fucked up jokes.
The alternate, which I’ve seen but not pulled off successfully myself, is going full blown I AM A FUCKED UP PERSON. My favourite Singaporean comedian looks a little deranged with blank eyes on-stage. He comes on, looks at the crowd, and goes, “Some people call me a ladykiller…those people are the police.” Boom. In that one sentence, he gets to evaluate if he can even more fucked up or go to more general stuff.
You say you’ve accumulated a lot of material but how optimised is it? More often than not, I find myself writing a bit that lasts for maybe say…10 minutes in full during first inception. By the time it’s trimmed down to the best bits, it’s lucky to be 3 minutes long. And it takes a lot of sets and repetition to find this balance.
If you can, do open mics as much as possible. Best way to try out material. Try for twice a week, preferably with a day in between to reset and properly evaluate and review. Once you know something works, you want to try it again in a different venue. Once it’s killed in every regular venue, you can safely put it away as your solid material.
If you have a story that’s good but long winded, you have two options to optimise it:
Shorten the story, cut out anything that doesn’t move the story along.
Add more jokes in between.
Also, if you’re wondering where the story ends, it’s the part with the biggest laugh. Ideally, you want to get a massive laugh and then leave like a bawse. If the story doesn’t end naturally there, try to get an even bigger laugh for the ending.
Don’t worry too much about being a “mathematician” when it comes to comedy. Some people are natural writers, some are natural storytellers, so you might just be a bit more analytical. Use it to your advantage, track that shit. Record your sets. Do video, and also do audio-only. Video is performance as a whole, but the audio will help you with your voice. Maybe your pauses are too long, or too short. Maybe you missed a beat or two.
The above is written based on performing in Malaysia. I’ve done some foreigners/expat only crowds, but I haven’t tried venturing overseas yet. Sorry if it’s messy up but there was a lot to take in and I was trying to cover in broad strokes.
EDIT: Quick advice for going on stage especially for newbies:
Try to get to the venue early and just test the mic. You want to know how you sound like at the venue.
If you don’t use the mic stand, take it and move it out of the way before you start the set. It’s very distracting. I like to keep my head down when I come on-stage, put the mic stand away and grab the mic, and then only do I look up and address the audience, and then only they see my face, and my hair, which is where my first joke comes from.
If the audience roars with laughter, let them laugh. Drop your hands, drop your mic, don’t interrupt unless the joke requires it. I’ve seen newbies do a good joke and then rush and then the audience is like, “Oh was that not the funny part?”
EDIT #2: I missed this bit.
First, there’s nothing wrong with one liners. They’re great because you can slot them in anywhere, or when you need a joke in a pinch if you mess up or don’t get a good response.
Second, don’t worry too much about expanding or not. If you don’t seem to have an idea to expand, just do it as is and see if it works.
Third, I’ll tell you I had to look up what Tapout was (WWE’s sportswear line right?) and I assume a lot of people wear them? Anyway, here is an example of a way to expand it:
I hate people who wear Tapout shirts. You know Tapout? WWE’s sportswear clothes? The wrestling company? Don’t they lose when they tap out? Is it a shirt for losers? Which I guess makes sense, because the only people I see wearing them are those that tap out everyday…tap out of their DIET! These fat fucks tap out of that and tap into the power of lasagna, spaghetti, etc etc. In fact, they tap out so much, they bring a new name to WWE - Waddle Waddle Everywhere.
It’s a rough draft, but you get the idea right? It’s based on how I present, think and write though, so maybe the idea won’t resonate with you. Just giving you options.
I also dabble on stand up comedy from time to time, i have to say that it usually goes well enough for me, getting a lot of laughs from the public.
The problem is that is not a legit way to get money here on central america
In my particular case, i preffer to have an idea of the theme and let the rest be improvisation. I have noticed that it goes better for me when i improvise on stage rather to trying to stick to a script, but that is my case.