Tickling the Funny Bone: That's the Magic of Comedy
Few things that all aspiring stand-up comedians must consider!
It’s a funny world that we live in. You know that. But if you are thinking about pursuing comedy with all your heart, you’d realize that comedy is something truly worth being taken seriously! However, before you grab your sarcastic feather and begin tickling those funny bones, here are a few things that you must know:
That Tube is no Tunnel: A majority of newcomers chase YouTube fame. Because it seems easily approachable and fairly popular. But the YouTube game is hard to master. Moreover, YouTube is just a means and not the end. And contrary to what a lot of people might say, it is also not the only means. You can make a sustainable comedy career without being a YouTube Star. Being one does not guarantee anything either.
Comedy and Social activism: Please try to be funny first before you aim to transform society. Likewise, just because you are funny doesn’t mean you are now capable of transforming the same. Social activism must only be done once you get subtle enough in your art. Some touchy topics can get a backlash from your audience and at times things might simply spiral out of control.
Getting Serious about Comedy: Remember the rules of life and business applicable to all art forms including the comic art. If you look closely you will notice that the comedy is much like marketing. You always have to identify and satisfy your target audience’s needs and be dynamic to stay relevant. Diversifying your revenue streams and identifying a niche will be very crucial for a stable professional journey.
Self-satisfaction: There is no space for complacency here. In the words of George Carlin, one of the greatest stand-up comedians of all time, “Most people work just hard enough not to get fired and get paid just enough money not to quit”. If you wish to reach anywhere near the great legend, keep in mind that you have never “made it”. Making it is a lifelong endeavour.
You’ll get better, eventually: There is no substitute for persistence or building the craft and no outcome is absolute forever. You will always think something that could have been done better. Whether you see that as an endless self-doubt or a relentless pursuit of excellence will define you as an artist, a professional, and, perhaps, to a great extent, as a person. After hitting the stage more than 1000 times, a lot of it simply becomes muscle memory.
Getting a gig: If you create the right proposition, you won't have to chase people for work. They will come to you. All you have to do is analyze them, their audience, and what will work for both of them.
Corporate Comedy: On Corporate Comedy, there have always been two schools of thought:
It is not appropriate in this environment
Corporate life is a comedy in itself
Your aim should always be creating good humour. Also, don’t get personal during corporate gigs. You might end up killing a golden goose.
Where do you make the grade? The primary sources of revenue for all stand-up comedians are corporate, college, public, and private shows. Now, each one of them has its own unique commercial value, audiences, and challenges. It is important to find where you fit in the best and make the cut.
Bring in Dynamism: The more intersecting circles you have in your life, the stronger is your positioning. It gives you a much broader experience which ultimately gives birth to more unique and higher quality content. And, like everywhere else, your content is ultimately the king. There are people with corporate experience, there are leadership trainers, and there are standup comedians, and so forth. But nobody has been combining the different aspects of life to make a unique offering.
All you need to do is work on these aspects before you hold the mike and completely dominate the stage. You’re in the right path and probably are going to the next big face within the industry. But polish your skills and maintain the perfect approach before you emerge as one. Godspeed!