Common mistake I think beginning comics make: Being a regular. Hitting the same rooms with the same people all the time. Too much comfort zone. Too much people laughing at you 'cuz you're all buddies. Mix it up instead. Getting in front of new people is the best way to stretch. Plus, you want to get seen by new people, right?
Stephen Colbert on Charlie Rose shows his improv background: "Be willing to surrender to your plan for the discovery of the moment. if you see a rabbit hole, jump in it. There are no mistakes, only discoveries."
Interesting technique for getting conversational and discovering stuff onstage: Keep speaking no matter what. Just start going and don't let silence happen. Forces you to turn to your subconscious and not overthink stuff. Surprise is funny and flowing is a great way to get it (if you're surprised by what you're saying, it's a lot more likely that other people will be too). Showalter does a good job of it in the video in this post.
The biz card for The Pit theater has a couple of quotes I like: "If you have fun, they'll have fun." And "Follow the fear, truly listen, then react."
Labels: about standup
Permalink | 4/24/2008