What are the advantages of performing every single night? Yes, that gets a person lots of exposure and shows that s/he is in demand, but why is it better than just doing a few shows each week and spending the rest of the time developing new material or networking? Doesn't it get exhausting? When does the madness stop...where does it take you?
Mark Normand is always hustling to do spots all over town so I asked him to answer. His response:
The advantages are practice, practice, practice. The more you get up, the more experience you're getting. It's common sense. Plus, you never know what you will come up with on stage at any given moment. What are the advantages? You answered your own question in your question: "That gets a person lots of exposure and shows that s/he is in demand." What more do you want than that?
Also, you should be working on material also as well as getting up. Write before you go out. Face time is important too but not as important as being on stage. "When does the madness stop?" It never stops. If you really want to be a comic, then you'll be trying to get up every night for years to come.
Good answer. I think the "you never know what you will come up with on stage at any given moment" thing is a big part of it. Great comedy is a conversation with the audience. You can't have that conversation alone.
Sports analogy! Let's say you want to be a great tennis player. You need an opponent. You can't just hit a ball against a wall all day and become great.
And yes, it gets exhausting to constantly haul your ass to shows, watch bad comics, etc. But getting great at anything can be exhausting. You have to love it so much that it doesn't seem like work. Getting onstage should bring you enough joy to justify the effort. If it doesn't, it's gonna be tough to get very far.