I am a producer. I am constantly asked what it is I do. I'll tell you: Much the same way a comedian brings his/her material to life, I bring life to a show. To me, stand-up is about the experience for both performer and audience. It's about somebody who may or may not be familiar with the live comedy experience going to a show and walking out thinking, "That was fuckin' awesome." It's about a comedian getting booked and realizing why he/she decided to get into comedy in the first place. I feel that recently this ideology has gotten away from a lot of people.
The last thing comedy needs are new audiences getting turned off to stand-up based on a negative experience. Expensive admission. Shitty drinks. Disgruntled staff. It's not fair to the audience and it sure as hell isn't fair to the performer to feel as if they don't wanna be there. Conversely, I don't think it's fair to prop up an amp, plug in a mic, and announce to an unsuspecting bar that it's Comedy Night. This is as equally off-putting as the term "alternative comedy".
Related: If show producers told the truth, it'd sound like this...
When I request a spot on "MOTHAF*@%!N' COMEDY" do I have to get the censorship punctuation right?
Love, a writer for Bleep my Dad Says
Oh My goodness ! This producer chap is a bit of a pretentious douche .
You're not Diagaliev and the Ballet Russe it's just repeat after me a very small comedy night .THANKS !
I'm a pretentious douche because I have an opinion? Well first off, LONDONCALLING (if that is your real name) I take it you don't live in NYC because that's who this is addressed to. You would have a better understanding of where this is coming from if you did.
Second, I have principles when it comes to working my ass off on something. I stick to my mission statement unlike a lot of assholes in comedy. To you it might just be a very small comedy night because I'm sure the 3 friends you begged to come watch your shitty jokes in front of a pool table at 10 p.m. on Wednesday would see it that way. But not me. Comedy is not just a hobby for me. It's something I work hard on for the benefit of good results by way of an entertained crowd and a performer who just killed. If that makes me a pretentious douche then I'm cool with that.
I honestly cannot think of anything more pretentious than posting a reference to "Diagaliev and the Ballet Russe" on a comedy blog.
RG's piece was fantastically well-written and not pretentious at all. I really admire his desire and drive to create a show experience that will have audience members coming back to comedy. So many clubs (mostly in Times Square) don't care if they are giving the audience a fun night-- they want the ticket money and 2 drinks and hustle the person in and out. These clubs could care less about comedy or the experience. Nine times out of ten, the show sucks and that audience member is soured on standup forever.
So for RG to run shows where he is actively seeking to turn people onto standup and "convert" them to comedy fans, is a noble venture. And he's really good at it.
This is why comedians should be the ones who start comedy clubs. But I would add "millionaire" as an adjective and a following parenthetical (who want to put all their time into helping others get good and never want to perform again). I guess since comics don't have the resources or selflessness to launch clubs, I'll settle for comedy fans opening them. I read a recent article in a local paper when I was in Bloomington, IN that a young couple opened The Comedy Attic.
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