Sunday, 15 August 2010

Your First Performance - Part 1

You've got your first five minute spot on stage, you've got the killer material and now you're ready to hit the stage and become a comedy sensation. But wait, there's still some preparation to do!

Getting YOUR audience

Sure, the gig promoter may have done some advertising and generated a buzz for the evening through posters, the internet and ineffectual flyering twenty minutes before the gig, but who knows if that crowd will appreciate your comedy.

Encourage a group of friends and family to come to your gig. Not only does this guarantee a good amount of the crowd will be laughing at everything you say, regardless of quality, it also means you can utilise them in other ways for your own benefit.

1) Alcohol - Ensure your crowd has had a few beforehand, this helps them lose their inhibitions and increases rowdiness, which will come in helpful for the following tips. Suggest that the gig is a "pre-drink" event before you all go out to a greasy nightclub to celebrate your crippling success on stage earlier.

2) Silence/Talking - Depending on what sort of appropriately obnoxious friends you've dragged along, it's best to get them to ignore the other comedians. If they sit there in complete attentive silence, it may unnerve the performer and he'll leave the stage early. If the performer can hear a slight droning in the background due to your friends talking throughout his act, he may become irritated and shout at the audience. Both benefit you.

3) Heckling - If you can make the other acts look bad, then you'll come out on top. Advise your friends that comedians appreciate heckles and it helps them along with their act. Drunken, lonely women who don't go out very often tend to work best here. Sporadic, one-word insults shouted at the comedian in the middle of a joke are quite effective also.

4) Leaving - The best way a crowd can work is if you can engineer it so that they arrive in large numbers shortly before you go on and then immediately leave after you're finished. Not only does this guarantee to kill the atmosphere, it shreds the next comedian's performance while loud, drunken people chat, finish their drinks and scrape chairs around the floor while exiting.

Pull the above off and you'll have promoters and comedians clamouring around you, giving you stage time and buying you drinks! Congratulations! You've made it!

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