Note from archiver<at>cs.uu.nl:
This page is part of a big collection
of Usenet postings, archived here for your convenience.
For matters concerning the content of this page,
please contact its author(s); use the
source, if all else fails.
For matters concerning the archive as a whole, please refer to the
or contact the archiver.
Subject: Stand-Up Comedy FAQ - Faq.txt [01/01]
This article was archived around: Wed, 16 Dec 1998 18:42:23 GMT
The alt.comedy.standup Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) list
Send suggestions and info to: Steve Silberberg (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) for the alt.comedy.standup Newsgroup
1. Becoming a stand-up comedian.
2. Commonly asked questions
3. Comedy writing tips
4. Protecting your work
5. The Screen Actors Guild
6. List of comedy clubs by city.
7. Agents and promotional agencies.
8. Books about how to become a stand-up.
9. Comedy Periodicals
10. Comedy Software
1. Tips for getting started in stand-up comedy
1. Keep a notebook and write down everything that strikes you as funny.
(Only write down the stuff YOU think of!!!!)
2. Start by going to open mikes. Prepare a few minutes of material and
give it your best shot.
3. Audio tape or video tape yourself when possible.
4. Don't call your act unfunny; they'll believe you.
5. Don't say "This is serious" or "This is drama"; they'll believe you.
6. Don't tell the audience they're tired or they don't have to stick
around. They'll believe you.
7. Don't tell the audience they're supposed to laugh. They WON'T believe
8. Don't use "savers" (jokes about bombing) until at least 3 gags went
9. Don't do the "endless close" if your final bit ate it. It's not only
excruciating for the audience, it unfairly eats into the next comic's
10. Don't dump on an audience member who didn't ask for it.
11. Don't berate the small audiences for being small. They showed up.
They're the good guys.
12. Don't judge, criticize, or rip other people. Comedy is more political
than you may imagine. Alternatively, politics is more comical than you
13. DON'T STEAL MATERIAL! Is your ego so fragile that you can't risk your
own material not being funny?
14. Don't get discouraged if you don't do well. (Not easy!).
15. Bring everybody you know out to see you perform so that the next day,
they can lie to you about how well you did.
16. Learn how to take a joke. Most comedians can't.
2. Commonly asked questions:
Q. Is alt.comedy.standup for telling jokes?
A. Definitely not. Don't post them. Not only are jokes formulaic and
offensive to stand-ups, if you post them, you will be derided mercilessly
by the regulars. If you have an auto-erotic compulsion to tell jokes, or
want to steal jokes you can tell at the office to make people think you're
not the pathetic idiot you are, go to rec.humor and talk to those morons.
Q. Then what is it for?
A. It is mostly a place where stand-up comedians, agents, club owners,
bookers, comedy writers, comedy fans, and an occasional doorman, sound guy
or entertainment attorney hang out and discuss performing, the state of
comedy, and other issues pertaining to stand-up comedy. The comedians in
this group range from first time open miker to nationally famous
headliner. Alt.comedy.standup also serves as an informational venue for
people who want to find out about about shows, touring, comedy CD's and the
like. Please refrain from posting binaries.
Q. And what else, Dave?
A. To me, this newsgroup is like sitting at a big table in a restaurant
after a show. Some comics are ripping each other, some just stay for a
minute then come back later, some are trying to be funny, and some just
want to eat and want everyone else to shut up.
Q. But isn't stand-up comedy dead?
Q. What happened to all the comedy clubs from the 80s, BaldGuy?
A. At one point there were too many rooms and not enough headliners. So in
order to put more money in their pockets some rooms decided to start
headlining people who weren't headliners and that had 50 minutes of time
killing material. Instead of hiring comedians who can kick ass but demanded
The audiences noticed the drop in quality and recognizability of the
headliners and quit coming to these clubs. So, some ever smart clubowners
decided to "Paper" the rooms which is letting people in for free and living
off the drinks alone. This is called a saloon. Once they got rid of the
cover charges they CERTAINLY couldn't afford the better comedians. Hence
they dried up and died.
Q. What about comedy writers?
A. There is currently no Usenet group specifically for comedy writing.
Comedy writers are encouraged to use alt.comedy.standup for that purpose.
Since there is a huge overlap in the two venues (stand-ups usually write
their own material) comedy writing is often discussed in the newsgroup.
Q. This news group isn't funny.
A. Then shut your pie hole and post something funny.
You're either new to the group or not a comic. People who peruse the group
the first time often have no idea what's going on. Comedians are notorious
for remembering and calling back posts from days, months, or even years ago
and using them as ammunition to rip others. Many of the posts that seem
nonsensical at first usually turn out to be the funny ones if you've been
paying attention. The posts whose contents are most readily apparent to a
newcomer are the functional/informational posts, and those are generally
dull, especially to outsiders who really don't care what an opener in
In order to fully appreciate this group, it's helpful to know the
characters. Many of the regulars have been posting here for 2 years or
more. Comedians are notorious for their amazing ability to recall any
event, no matter how trivial, especially if it can disparage someone or
bring forth humor. Lurk for a few weeks. If it's still not funny to you, go
to rec.humor and talk to those morons.
Q. Just what is a stand-up comedian, Bob?
A. "Comedian: a breed of human being who, without benefit of a steady job,
adequete plane fare or a social life, traverses the globe attempting to
impart upon the masses his/her warped, intricate and often beguiled point
of view while living from brown paper bags, overnight cases and on stale
donuts and coffee."
Q. Why are you a stand-up, Billy?
A. I know when I was a kid, I mean little kid, if I could make the grownups
laugh, I felt like I was closer to them, or they were closer to me. I used
humour in school to avoid getting beaten up, to make friends, and to escape
the realities of homework (a humourous essay was quicker to write than a
real one, and I could get the teacher to laugh, I sometimes actually got a
good mark ).
Q. What differentiates comedians from other people?
A. Everyone experiences pain, of course. But a comedian has the ability to
use their anger and intelligence to refocus and reconstruct their pain into
entertainment. It's so obvious that it almost goes without saying, but
comedians are generally more intelligent and sensitive than the average
person. It's our undeniably superior (almost god-like) intelligence that
made life difficult for us when we were children. We could see through the
hypocracy and illogic of our parents and teachers, but because of our age
and size we couldn't do anything about it. The more we pointed out the
foolishness of our "superiors," the more they kept us down. But just as
pressure and heat transform coal into diamonds, it's that frustration,
social pressure and the heat of anger that transforms us into comedians.
Q. How many Open Mikes do I have to do to become a star, actual3?
A. It frequently amazes me how many people want - even expect - some kind
of instant stardom. As someone who frequents open mics, I think it's
important that people understand that the value you get out of them is not
some diamond lane to superstardom but the opportunity to try different
things in front of an audience and develop a comfort level that allows you
to get better.
Along the way, of course, you'll have the fun of getting out of the house,
away from the television and performing for people the way they used to do
it in the old days. It's a lot like entertaining people in your living
room, because the audience is mostly comprised of other performers. If you
go into an open mic situation expecting some kind of immediate result,
you're only going to be frustrated and get angry. And what's the point of
that? You don't get good feedback that way; nor do you give yourself a
chance to fail.
Q. What else can you tell me about these Open Mikes, actual3?
A. I consider open mics to be a hobby like fencing or building model
railroads or refinishing furniture. You put in time and effort, you achieve
a certain level of expertise, but the odds that you'll get back any of the
time or money you invest are very small. It becomes a matter of deciding
what you're going to do with your life.
So what am I going to do with the time I have left here on Earth? I can
entertain people who are as bored as I am. For a few hours, I can forget my
stupid money problems and help others forget, too. Open mics are great for
that. If it turns out that I have a chance to make a little money from it,
get a little recognition, and maybe hit it big, all the better. But when
I'm up on stage at an open mic I try to get as much emotional and
intellectual value out of those few moments as I can. If I didn't, I'd be
in real trouble. Because that might be all I ultimately get out of it.
Q. I'm pretty damn funny. How do I go about getting a gig, Tim?
A. Oh, sure, you may be pretty damn funny. But you'll need a hell of a lot
more than that to get one of your so-called "gigs." Bitterness, for one
thing. If you haven't failed miserably at nearly every legitimate job
you've ever tried to hold, then you might not have the necessary level of
choking bile to perform stand-up. You see, the best stand-ups are those who
are able to take their own sickening, pathetic obsessions and shortcomings,
and splatter them all over an audience like an Alien Autopsy. Only then
will you even begin to appreciate the masochistic delight you'll experience
offering your brilliant analogies and sparkling wit to a room full of
smoking drunks trying desperately to get laid by the other fattest person
in the room.
Q. I'm really freaking funny, Liam.
A. Every time someone tells you how funny they are, you know right away
that they're not, and the more they insist on the fact that they're funny,
the more you know they're an untalented douchebag.
Q. What should my act be about, Mark?
A. There are jokes and subjects that the individual comedian wants to tell
and explore and there are jokes and subjects the audience wants to explore.
There is a large intersection and it is the comedian's job to find that
Q. Are friends and family supportive of my decision to do comedy, Steve?
A. Friends and family will think you're nuts if you continue to pursue
stand-up for years, to the detriment of personal relationships, good health
and good credit reports, and they'll eventually tell you so to your face.
Enjoy these early days, when those who love you will patronize you, and
encourage you to follow your dream to your face, secretly believing that
one day you'll take that Asst. Manager gig at Blockbuster Video.
Q. There are no Open Mikes in my area. How do I get stage time?
A. Well you could move, but consider starting your own Open Mike. Go to a
local bar, or club, or even shopping mall and pitch it to them. Tell them
you are going to run a comedy night once a week or so. If you don't have,
or can't afford equipment, a bar, or anyplace bands play are usually a good
venues. The point is, make things happen for yourself. If you depend upon
others for your success, you'll often end up getting screwed politically,
financially, or creatively, but seldom physically.
Q. How do I set up an Open Mike, Al?
A. Find a bar or coffeeshop that has a small performance area that's
separate from the main bar area.
Make sure you can perform without worrying about the juke box, the
television set or waiters carrying food.
Ask the owner for permission to have small open mikes there during a time
when it's slow anyway.
Send notices to your local newspapers and drama classes to advertise that
Open mikes that mix music, poetry, etc. with comedy tend to be more fun for
the audience members than those that just feature bad, open-mike-level
Make sure that the bar owner understands that most of the performers will
be really, really bad.
Try not to locate the acts any place where the performers will frighten
away the paying customers.
Charge a fee and give the some money to the bar owner.
Avoid setting up your open mike at a family restaurant or anywhere else
where many kids are present.
If you do end up somewhere need food or kids, make it clear to the
performers what the limits are.
Yes, censorship is bad, but there is nothing worse than a bad comic doing
stupid enema jokes while people are eating. Especially when it's the same
bad enema jokes you've hard 50 times before.
Q. Is gender a problem in stand-up, Cathe?
A. The problems I have found most in clubs is that there is a quota of how
many women will get booked because "They're just not popular." The worst
problem is the ability to break that wall of "woman = same old shtick" that
glazes over owners and managers eyes. No man has ever been passed over for
a gig because there was "already another man on the bill".
Q. What's a hack?
A. Stolen material. There's nothing lower or more reprehensible than
someone who steals your material - - especially if they do it better than
you. A hack also refers to material done to death, e.g. Cops in Donut
shops, 7-11 jokes, Clinton-Lewinski jokes, Viagra jokes, differences
between cats and dogs, airline food, etc. etc.
There is an entire FAQ, called the "Hack FAQ"
(http://rampages.onramp.net/~stevebo/hack.html) which gets posted
periodically to alt.comedy.standup and was originally written by Steven
Q. Who's a hack?
A. Sorry, FAQ's are limited to 64K.
Q. Why are there so many hacks?
A. In the case of stolen material, very few comedians maliciously hack
others (some do though!). Most comedians have an uncanny ability to
unconsciously store and catalog almost every bit they've ever heard. Often,
they'll write a bit, forgetting that they heard something similar 4 years
Sometimes, comics will write the same joke independently of each other. You
can usually both continue doing the bit. However, if this happens and the
other comic does the bit on TV, you're screwed and should abandon it.
Comics who use stock premises do it because it's easy. Furthermore, you can
connect with more audience members when pontificating about themes common
to everyone. If you really want to do comedy about stock premises, ask
yourself, "What can I bring to this topic that thousands of comics haven't
Q. Why would anyone ever resort to hack, Stu?
A. The crowd laughs at what the crowd laughs at. It's our JOB as
ENTERTAINERS, not as artists, but as ENTERTAINERS to entertain. I and many
others on this NG make our living making the Yahoos laugh. The amount of
work we get is often directly proporsional to the laughs we get, so in my
case, yes if I sense the audience isn't going understand my clever edgy
well written material (for whatever reason) I go right to the hacky crap I
keep in my back pocket and I clench my teeth as I do it. And sure it might
be Men V. Women or some assortment of dick jokes du juor, but A) they're my
dick jokes, and B)I'm not doing fart jokes. So I guess everyone has a line
in the sand that they won't cross.
Q. What's "the light"?
A. At some point while you're on stage, someone will shine a light in your
eyes. This is the owner's/manager's way of saying "Your time is over, wrap
it up." You then have about a minute to get off the stage. Generally, the
light is used to make sure a show runs smoothly and on time. However it can
also be used to tell you that your performance bites or that the person
with the light has a petty vendetta against you.
Q. What is "working blue"?
A. Working blue refers to using off-color, not suitable for TV material.
While four letter words certainly fall into this category, working blue is
not limited to expletives. For instance, describing various secretions in
great detail can also constitute working blue, despite the fact that you
may have used acceptable medical terminology only.
Q. Should I work blue?
A. The short answer is to get up on stage and speak your passion. If you
cannot possibly get your point across without using four letter words, then
use them. If your personality is such that you use four letter words as a
matter of course, then use them. But using them gratuitously is a crutch
that should be avoided at all costs, especially if you have TV aspirations.
It's not always desirable to change your personality for the audience.
Speak your truth. You can say what you think an audience wants to hear, and
they may think you're funny, but you won't pioneer anything new unless you
use that one thing that makes you different, your own personality.
So if your passion is to tell people that you think date rape is funny, why
censor yourself? I personally do an awful lot of religion jokes. Many
people hate it, but those are the types of things I want to tell people. I
have no burning desire to tell people what I think the difference between
cats and dogs are.
Q. Will studying other comedians help me do quality comedy?
A. There's no right or wrong answer. Some people feel studying others is a
must do, for some, it's a must don't.
Even those who feel that they really learn by studying others, have to be
vigilant about not copying them. Not the "I'm gonna rip that joke off"
copy, but the kind of thing where they recycle a joke or premise without
even realizing it.
For me, I'd rather fail with completely original thoughts and premises,
than be successful using bits and premises that were inadvertently lifted
Q. Should I pander to the audience?
A. Only to save yourself from stinking up a place. There are 2 types of
comedians. Ones that are in it just for the ego stroke they get from
audience laughter, and the other that wants to get a message across. It is
a rare individual that can do both well. Pandering to the audience will
help your ego, but won't help you develop as a professional.
Q. Do you ever buy your material?
A. Some comics perform comedy to transmit their point of view to the
audience and hopefully make people laugh. If they bought/stole/used someone
else's material, they'd be no more than a talking monkey on stage
regurgitating other people's thoughts. Of course, some people have frail
egos and find the only thing that matters is for people to laugh at them,
regardless of whether the material was theirs in the first place.
So, sure I buy material.
Q. I'm too freakin' lazy and vapid to write my own material. Where can I
buy material so that people laugh at me and stroke my ego?
* Comedy Writing Service (http://rob2e.doitnow.com/comedy)
Q. Is anything in comedy off limits, Aloo?
A. Any TOPIC is fair game for comedy. However, different circumstances
determine the topics that are appropriate. For instance, people who are
sensitive should see comedy that's billed as a clean/non-offensive show-
and the comics who agree to do that show should abide by those parameters.
Many corporate events/ private parties fit into that category and therefore
the comic's comments should reflect that.
There is also a difference between a comic discussing a particular topic in
general and picking on an audience member. A comic may do a joke that makes
handicapped people, black guys, homosexuals, ugly chicks, retards, aborted
fetuses etc., but when they apply it to a particular person in the
audience, the joke
changes from a general quip to a personal attack.. I've never been fond of
comics who harass audience members- especially if the person didn't
Q. What kind of material should I do, Tim?
A. You are perfectly free to collect and perform jokes such as those where
various improbable combinations of people and animals go into bars, or you
can muse philosophically about the rubbery skin on pudding, or you can ask
those thought-provoking questions about why men must dominate the remote
control... But why not get a real performance rush by letting your audience
know your most secret thoughts? Let the audience know who you are and what
you think. Talk about your own fears and faults.
By presenting what is most personal for yourself, you actually touch a
common chord among more people. You can illuminate what it means to be
human, and bring more humanity out of yourself and others. And that's what
great stand-up is all about ... or you could just do dick jokes.
Q. What's a dick joke?
A. See "Working Blue".
Q. What's alternative comedy, Eugene?
A. Alternative comedy is just another kind of outlet. The reason it exists
and the reason it survives is because some of it is incredible. People must
like alternative comedy to keep coming back every week or every other week.
A lot of the performers write new stuff for every show, and there is a
great deal of unpredictability. Alternative comedy should be a risk and is
based on surprise. A lot of people don't want to see a bunch of middle age
white men talk about how truly difficult it has become to find a date or
whether everyone has noticed how people blah blah blah.
Q. Are comedy classes useful?
A. No one can teach you how to be funny. However you can be taught to be
less nervous on stage. You can also be taught some body language, how to
handle the mike, and how to phrase jokes. Unfortunately, you can also be
taught a "formula" for jokes.
Comedy classes are useful for building confidence, and sometimes getting
showcases and gigs. However, if you're not funny, comedy classes won't make
you funny. And they can be expensive.
One of the selling points of a comedy class is that your class is a built
in support mechanism. Improv works on this concept. So do jockstraps.
So the answer is yes, comedy classes are useful, especially if you're the
teacher. If you're a student, it depends.
Q. Tell me about tapes, Dave
A. Tapes should be from 5 to 15 minutes. From different shows, if possible.
Club owners that have to see a 30 minute tape are more concerned with
quantity than quality. YOU know whether you can do 30 minutes or not. The
owner of Guffaw's Pizza 'n' Comedy Castle may have a different perspective,
but too many clubs have comic's tapes as doorstops, coasters, etc. And see
if you know a headliner that works the club regularly. Maybe they can
recommend you OR bring you in as their middle. Better not suck, though, or
you'll lose a booking and a friend.
Q. Is it better to risk all and do a showcase at a new club or send tapes
until they decide they want you, KlownHuntr?
A. I've never NOT gotten booked from an audition set, never HAVE gotten
booked from a tape.
Q. What should I put on a bio, Dave?
A. Bios should be a list of clubs where you KNOW you've done well. Try not
to have too many Holiday Inn's listed. Include your current address and
phone number and an agent, if you're unlucky. Have some references of
headliners and club owners that think highly of you. You should ask them if
you can put them on your bio so someone doesn't call them up and catch them
Q. What's a head shot?
A. A head shot is a photo of you. You often need to send them to agents and
club owners before an upcoming performance. A goofy headshot will not get
you work. It will still be up at the club in 10 years and will make you
regret wearing those handcuffs and a hula skirt.
Q. What does a manager do? How about an agent? What's the difference?
A. A manager keeps your name in the loop. He guides your career and helps
you make choices that are difficult for a performer to make because he/she
can't step back and look at the whole picture. He keeps your name in the
mix, so when something comes up people already have you on their mind. An
agent just tries to sell you to anyone. The manager is (or should be) more
selective. If you are looking for a manager, look at his/her clients and
see what they are doing and if they are going to have long term careers,
etc. Alot of the so called " best " managers in comedy today are selling
their clients out so they can get ahead and look good.
Q. What do bookers do, Pepperskul?
A. Bookers schedule comedians, send photos and bios on the comedians to the
club, arrange radio interviews, send press releases out on new club
openings and special comics, and above all...get the comics the information
they need to get to their gigs.
Bookers who book mainly COMEDY CLUBS are hired because the club owner
simply has gotten fed up with trying to book the room. In all honesty, I've
talked to MANY comedy club owners that say that dealing with all the comics
is just a big fat pain in the ass. That's not to say that ALL comics are a
pain, it's just sometimes taking the calls from everyone looking for work
and dealing with schedule changes and whether or not you have pictures for
the ad becomes a gruesome task. If a club were to try and do this all
themselves, they might find it cost prohibitive because they can't route
dates together and they don't have enough contacts.
There are also many bookers out there who book special events for a variety
of other clients - not just clubs. People call bookers or agents all of the
time looking for talent for an event they are having. Without these
bookers, many road comics would not have the extra work that comes from
these sources simply because the availablity of sources for these "special
clients" would not be as accessible
Q. Where can I find bookers, Bret?
A. Comedy Bookers (http://members.aol.com/bookerlist/comlist.html)
Q. I'm about to go out on the road. Any tips, Lawrence/Steve??
* Get delivery menus to the nearest pizza place, chinese place or
* Have a calling card because most condos don't have phones you can dial
* Ask the desk clerk for a room on the top floor, away from the
housekeeping closet, vending machines, and elevators. That will be the
quietest room in the hotel.
* Carry a fan for "white noise" so it is easier to sleep if the hotel or
condo is loud.
* When the gig's in the hotel, and they try to stick you in a meeting
room with a murphey-bed, and they try to use the line "Sorry, but this
is what we assign as 'comp' rooms", try politely replying, "My room is
not comped, it's part of my compensation, just like my paycheck." 9
times out of 10, that will work.
* When you bring some chippie back to the hotel/condo for a one-night
stand, hide your jewelry and wallet while she's in the bathroom.
* On Saturdays The Instant Oil Change place is usually managed by a
young assistant manager. They will usually trade passes for an oil
* Eat at alot of happy hours.
* Become a AAA delux member. You may need the free 100 mile tow.
* You can pull the corner of carpet up in most hotel rooms and hide
money, it can easily be put back on the tack strip
* Tip the bartender or waitstaff that serves you.
* Bring your laptop to the show. No telling how many people have keys to
* Before you go buy smut, check under the mattress in your hotel room,
salesman buy mags, and don't want to take them home so they put them
under the nattress where the maid can't reach.
* Be polite to the staff at the club, not only is it the right thing to
do, but many club owners listen to them about the comics. If two
comics are of equal talent, one is a dick and one is a good guy, who
do you think is coming back?
* When a club offers you a fistful of free passes to give away to
promote the show, there are creative ways to distribute them. If you
are aware of how the barter system works, you can often trade free
passes to one of your shows for pizza, sandwiches, games of bowling,
old magazines, discounts in the mall and more.
* Write your name on the passes you distribute, and tell them they need
to use it this week. People are more likely to come out that week,
giving you a bigger crowd. And all those passes with your name on them
at the box office tends to impress the management.
Q. What does it mean when a club owner/bar manager says, "We don't have
enough cash to cash your check.", Kevin?
A. This often means it's going to bounce or be cancelled, so go to HIS bank
at opening time the VERY NEXT DAY and present the check. He will probably
sleep late and try to cancel it around noon, by which time you'll already
have the $$$. If it bounces at the bank, go see a local attorney. It's
illegal to bounce a check, and you can often recover triple the amount in
damages, however, it usually doesn't get that far. A letter from an
attorney usually does the trick.
Q. What can you tell me about corporate gigs, Laphboy?
A. Corporate gigs can range anywhere from a banquet hall in the Four
Seasons to an area cordoned off by an accordian pull-divider in the back of
a Shoney's. The one consistent element is that no one ever thinks you'll
need a microphone or lighting, because you're a professional. If there is a
mic, it's usually attached to a podium, leaving you delivering your act
like a White House Press Secretary at an official briefing.
You're generally stuck into the program immediately after a large meal has
been consumed, during what is traditionally the 'drinking and napping'
hour. If they aren't dining, you will follow a Senior Vice-President with
no sense of timing who would walk half the room, if they were allowed to go
You can do well at corporate gigs if you stick to your act (if it's not
overly offensive), but that they'll gladly carry you around the banquet
room on their shoulders if you slam The Boss. It's as simple as that.
Learn his name, and at some point in your act, use it where you would
normally say the word "asshole". NOTE: Don't use this tried and true
technique in conventions held by religious organizations.
In closing, corporate gigs do very little to enhance the edginess of your
act, but they pay anywhere from 2 to 10 times better than the average one
nighter, less 40% for the booker who answered the phone and then called
Q. Hey Stu, real comics should be spending their time working on their acts
instead of reading the newsgroup!
A. Most, if not all, of the comics here are not quite as busy or successful
as they would like to be. Most will take responsibility for their lives,
and are doing what they can to be as successful as they can be. They look
to the future, and the present is seen as a stepping stone.
There are some other whiners, however, who just get angry. They want to
blame everyone but themselves for whatever has gone wrong in their lives.
Instead of trying to make things better, they run around complaining that
things aren't better.
The first group are, to me, a joy to interact with, even when things are
not going well or I don't agree with them. Even at their lowest they have a
spark of optimism that can't be missed, a knowledge that where there's
life, there's hope.
The second group, however, are a pain, and I would prefer to do without
Q. Any interesting Web pages?
* Alex's Comedy Page (http://www.hooked.net:80/alex/comedy.html)
* Cathe B. Alleger (http://home.pacbell.net/catheb)
* BBC Comedy Writing (http://www.bbc.co.uk/tventertainment/comedy.html)
* Rabbi Bob Alper (http://www.bobalper.com)
* Ask Mr. Hack (http://members.aol.com/IMPROVFOOL/AskMrHack.html)
* Australian Comedy Page (http://www.dasmac.com.au/#Comedy)
* Willie Barcena (http://www.jte.com/jte/willie.htm)
* Baxter's Comedy at Large (http://members.aol.com/baxipad/)
* Sandra Bernhard (http://www.netlink.co.uk/users/humornet/comind.html)
* Albert Brooks (http://members.aol.com/shmuggs/abrooks.html)
* Brother Theodore's Dark Humor
* Larry "Bubbles"
* Lenny Bruce (http://infoweb.magi.com/~mbein/lennyb.html )
* Lenny Bruce (http://central.iat.utexas.edu/~guillot/lbruce.html)
* Lenny Bruce (http://member.aol.com/dcspohr/lenny/lenny1.htm)
* Christopher Cannon (http://www.gshirts.com/gshirt/cannon.html)
* John Carfi (http://www.johncarfi.com)
* Jim Carrey(http://www.halcyon.com/browner/)
* Jim Carrey (http://www.en.com/users/bbulson/jim.html)
* Jim Carrey (http://www.iinet.net.au/~ventura/carrey)
* Rodney Carrington (http://www.rodneycarrington.com/rodney.htm)
* CBC Comics (http://www.tv.cbc.ca/comics/)
* Chicago Comedy Festival (http://www.comedytown.com)
* Chuckle Club (http://www.users.dircon.co.uk/~e-cheesy/)
* Club NEC (http://www.clubnec.com/events.htm)
* Ian Cognito (http://www.netvision.co.uk/cognito/)
* Columbus, OH Open-Mikes (http://members.aol.com/cruri/index.html)
* Comedian Web Ring (http://www.kinison.com/webring.html)
* The Comedy Bit Network of Australia (http://www.comedy.bit.net.au/)
* The Comedy Catch (http://bertha.chattanooga.net/comedy/)
* Comedy Central (http://www.comcentral.com/)
* Comedy Fest (NZ) (http://bitz.co.nz/comedyfest/ha/)
* Comedynet (http://www.comedynet.net/entry.html)
* Comedy on the Net (http://sonofspider56.lanminds.com/comedy.htm)
* Comedy on Radio 4 (http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio4/comedy/comedy.html)
* Comedy on the Web (www.comedybreak.com)
* Comedy-o-Rama (http://www.comedyorama.com)
* The Comedy Page (http://comedypage.com)
* The Comedy Store (UK) (http://www.londonmall.co.uk/comedy)
* Comedy Town (http://www.comedytown.com/menu.htm)
* Comedyzine (http://www.comedyzine.com/)
* The Comedy Zone (http://bcsdesign.com/comedyzone/)
* Billy Connolly
* Billy Connolly (http://dspace.dial.pipex.com/town/place/xaa93/)
* Bill Cosby (http://www.netwalk.com/~hammer)
* Bob Crawford (http://members.aol.com/Comic228/crawford.html)
* Steve Curtiss (http://www.geocities.com/hollywood/hills/8970)
* CyberYucks (http://www.wyldeproductions.com/cyber/cyber.htm)
* Rodney Dangerfield (http://www.rodney.com/)
* Tanyalee Davis (http://home.earthlink.net/~tanyalee)
* Doctor Demento (http://copper.ucs.indiana.edu/~jbmorris)
* Denmark Stand Up Comedy (http://www.stand-up.dk)
* Dennis D. Dinger (http://www.efws.com/~dddinger)
* Nick DiPaolo (http://www.nickdipaolo.com)
* Dona Ana Repertory Theater (http://www.barking.com/comedy)
* Will Durst (http://www.hooked.net/alex/auto/durst.html)
* Dame Edna (http://users.aol.com/dameedna2)
* Bill Engvall (http://members.aol.com/engvallhp/bill.html)
* e-zines (http://www.e-zines.com/)
* Glen Foster (http://www.pathcom.com/~comedy/glenweb.html)
* Ian Fraser (http://wwwpe.aztec.co.za/~ifraser/)
* FREE comedy web page (http://www.comedy.com/people2.asp)
* Darren Frost (http://www.netroute.net/~milhouse)
* Janeane Garofalo (http://www.blarg.net/~future/garofalo.html)
* Steve Gelder (http://members.aol.com/Laphboy/homepage.html)
* Wally Glenn (http://www.halcyon.com/gwally/www/wallpage2.html)
* Nancy Gold (http://www.e-zines.com:80/comics/nancy_gold/index.html)
* Allan Goodwin (http://exit1.com/al/)
* Linda Haggar (http://www.ozemail.com.au/~madstove2)
* Ha Ha Network (http://hotbands.net/haha)
* Johnny Hardwick (http://www.bga.com/~johnnyha/)
* Marc Hershon (http://www.dnai.com:80/~hershco/)
* Bill Hicks (http://www.electricfrog.co.uk/richardh)
* Bill Hicks (http://globall.com/j/comicgod.html)
* Bill Hicks (http://lispstat.alcd.soton.ac.uk/~sp/bill.html)
* Bill Hicks (http://monkey.hooked.net/monkey/m/chimp/hicks/hicks.html)
* Bill Hicks
* Bill Hicks Sound Archive
* Bill Hicks Video Archive
* Keith Hoffman (http://www.midlink.com/khoffman/)
* Hollywood Revue (http://home.earthlink.net/~hwoodrevue/)
* Bob Hope Young Comedians (http://www.ipac.net/bobhope/bobhope.html)
* Houston Comedy Listings
* Humornet (http://www.netlink.co.uk/users/humornet)
* The Illegitimate Comedian
* The Improv (http://www.aentv.com)
* Interactive Humor Database (http://humor.ncy.com)
* Eddie Izzard (http://www.uni-com.co.uk/~cdonovan)
* Jase's Comedy Page (http://webzone.ccacyber.com/www/hahaha/)
* Richard Jeni (http://www.richardjeni.com)
* The Amazing Jonathan (http://members.aol.com/amazj/index.html)
* Andy Kaufman (http://fly.HiWAAY.net/~bkm/akhome.htm)
* Andy Kaufman (http://andykaufman.jvlnet.com/)
* Sheila Kay (http://www.sheilakay.com/)
* Lauire Kilmartin (http://www.kilmartin.com/)
* Sam Kinison (http://www.kinison.com/)
* Bill Kirchenbauer (http://www.legendsofcomedy.com)
* Komickazi (http://www.komickazi.com/)
* Steve Kravitz (http://www.freeyellow.com/members2/sjk56/index.htm)
* LA Performance Venues
* The Laugh Dome (http://www.laugh.com)
* Laugh Traxx E-Zine (http://www.borg.com/~traxx/laugh/index.html)
* David Letterman (http://www.cen.uiuc.edu/~jl8287/letterman.html)
* Anita Liberty (http://www.hbo.com/liberty/)
* Wendy Liebman (http://www.wendy.thebestonline.com)
* Dave Little (http://www.audionet.com/dlittle.htm)
* Dino Londis (http://www.geocities.com/Broadway/Stage/1223)
* M2C Comedy Links (http://www.surfinglinks.com/comedy.htm)
* Norm MacDonald (http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Set/7591/norm.htm)
* Tommy Mack (http://members.aol.com/teenactor1/main.html)
* Kathleen Madigan (http://www.flylive.com/flylive/madigan.html)
* Steve McGrew (http://members.aol.com/stevmcgrew/mcgrew.html)
* Steve McGrew (http://www.steve-mcgrew.com/)
* Make Me Laugh (http://www.helpline.com/powerpak/catpak/9M.html)
* London Comedy Venues (http://www.cool-stuff.co.uk/cgi/Venues.pl)
* Steve Marmel (http://www.marmel.com)
* Steve Marmel, non-sanctioned
* Jackie the Joke Man Martling (http://www.interstar.com/jokeland.html)
* Tim McIntire (http://www.cris.com/~macadoo)
* Brian McKim (http://bmckim.home.mindspring.com/)
* Shane Michael (http://www.swiftsite.com/shayne-michael/index.htm)
* Dennis Miller (http://www.nd.edu/~jlaurie1/dmhome.html)
* John Moloney (http://www.cool-stuff.co.uk/Moloney/)
* Arthur F. Montmorency (http://virtuallyfunny.com/netcomic)
* New England Area Comics on the Web (http://www.neacow.com/)
* Bob Newhart (http://www.mindspring.com/~i20west/bob.htm)
* John O'Connell (http://www.concentric.net/~mrjohno)
* Open Casting
* Orlando Area Comedy Clubs
* Sue Paluh (http://www.eskimo.com/~comic/)
* Mike "Wheels" Parise (http://www.angelfire.com/ca2/wheelsp)
* PerformingLive (http://www.performinglive.com)
* Phalliqua (http://members.aol.com/PHALLIQUA/index.html)
* Prairienet British Comedy
* Premiere Radio Comedy (http://www.premrad.com/comedy/)
* Rick Presley (http://www.geocities.com/Broadway/Stage/5191/index.htm)
* Greg Proops (http://members.aol.com/VMansbridg/GProops.html)
* Ken & Lisa Reed (http://www.cris.com/~k2reed/comedy.htm)
* Daniel Rosen (http://members.aol.com/ucanjuggle/misc.html)
* Jeff Ross (http://www.i1.net/~tschoen/jeff.htm)
* Mort Sahl (http://www.geocities.com/TelevisionCity/3217/)
* Saturday Night Live (http://www.snlvideo.com)
* Adam Sandler ( http://www.dartmouth.edu/~onnen/sandler.html)
* Dan Savage (http://www.tiac.net:80/users/dans)
* Mark Scalia (http://members.aol.com/Msxprs/index.html)
* Richard Scott (http://home.earthlink.net/~limpet/)
* Seattle Comedy Page (http://www.uspan.com/u-laff)
* Jerry Seinfeld (http://www.ifi.uio.no/~rubens/seinfeld/)
* Seinfeld Sound Archive
* Todd Shilkin (http://www.iinet.net.au/~funnyguy/)
* Sitcom Format 101
* Traci Skene (http://bmckim.home.mindspring.com/)
* Bobby Slayton (http://www.hooked.net/alex/guests/slayton/slayton.html)
* Steve Smith (http://members.aol.com/IMPROVFOOL/index.html)
* Dana Snow (http://www.breakaway.org/openstudio/danasnow/)
* Cathy Sorbo (http://www.cyberspace.com/~ais/cathymain.html)
* Stand-Up Comedy Bingo (http://www.fadetoblack.com/bingo.htm)
* Stand-Up Norge As (Norway) (http://www.standup.no/)
* The Stand Up Show (http://www.comedyzone.beeb.com/standupshow/)
* Darrel Stern (http://members.gnn.com/StdUpComic/index.html)
* Ben Stiller Show (http://members.tripod.com/~stillershow/)
* SUCK (Stand-Up Comedy Klubben - - Sweden)
* Gary Thison (http://www.rust.net/~comedy)
* Gary Thison (http://www.misi.net/clients/whilde/comedy.htm)
* Three Stooges Audio (http://www.aros.net/~maniac)
* Ty's Humorous Domain
* UK Laughter Links
* UnCabaret Page! (http://www.uncabaret.com)
* Charlie Viracola (http://www.viracola.com/)
* We're Funny That Way (http://members.aol.com/werefunny/index.html)
* Mike Welch (http://members.tripod.com/~mwelch/index.html)
* Kevin Bloody Wilson (http://kevin.bloody.wilson.com.au)
* WLLD Comedy Server (http://www.wlld.com/wlld/comedy.htm)
* Steven Wright (http://meer.net/~mtoy/steven_wright.html)
* Bob Zany (http://www.bobzany.com/)
* Joel Zimmer (http://members.aol.com/JZKMEDN)
* Adrienne Zurub (http://www.funnybitch.com)
* This Page (http://rampages.onramp.net/~stevebo/faq.html)
Q. Any Improv Web pages?
A. Who cares?
Q. No, really.
* Dizzy Squid (http://www.worldlink.ca/~dzsquid/welcome.htm)
* General Improv Page (ftp://ftp.crl.com/users/ro/zot/improv.html)
* The Improv Page (http://sunee.uwaterloo.ca/~broehl/improv/index.html)
* Fourclaps (ftp://ftp.crl.com/users/ro/zot/fourclaps.html)
* Laughing Matters (http://www.mindspring.com/users/bsack/lam.html)
* Part Time Theater Company (http://members.aol.com/QWikLaff/index.html)
* Second City (http://www.secondcity.com)
* The Toasted Marshmallows
Q. Any ancillary web sites of interest?
* Comic Press News (http://www.comicpress.com/)
* The World Wide Willie (http://www.WorldWideWillie.com/)
* You Can Juggle (http://members.aol.com/ucanjuggle/)
Q. Any related news groups?
Q. How about comedy chat?
A. Yes, there is a comedy chat line. To find out more, E-mail the founder,
Richard Scott (email@example.com) or the current host David Kelman
(firstname.lastname@example.org). The server is irc.superlink.net and the room is
#greenroom. Chat is regularly schedule for 9PM - midnight EST on Mondays.
3. Tips for comedy writers:
* Obtain the Comedy USA directory. Send material to comics listed in the
directory in advance of an appearance at a club or hotel. They may buy
* Agents generally prefer a project such as screen play, script or book
which is a moneymaker for them, however they may send material to
Letterman, Leno or a sketch show for you as well.
* People become staff writers after selling a few one-shot scripts to a
* People almost always get those jobs from pitch sessions after hearing
many, many times "We've already done that" or "We have that idea in
the works already."
* People get pitch sessions after a recognised, licensed agent -- a list
of them is available from the Writers' Guild of America West --
usually someone IN L.A. or Hollywood --- has sent out a sample script.
* You usually do a sample script for Series A to sell to series B.
* Usually "they" only buy pilots from people who have already been staff
writers for an existing series ("of Cheers" helps sell a series).
* Don't bother attempting to sell a premise or treatment: that game is
reserved for proven writers and that's because they have a track
record of delivering a tight, polished script.
* Agents must represent your WRITING, therefore they must see your
WRITING, like in a finished script, to sell your skills.
* Most of the time, that wonderful spec script idea will NOT be what you
sell (THELMA & LOUISE a notable exception that proves the rule) but
your writing skills will be what that agent will sell to most likely
get you an editing or rewriting job.
* Consider collaboration. Writing by yourself can be fun and you are
ultimate master of your work, but you tend to get tunnel vision. The
work can end up suffering.
* Two people can write a script together, but you tend to reach an
impasse rather quickly. e.g. One thinks the bystander should say
"Grape Nuts" and the other thinks the bystander should say "intestinal
* Three people shouldn't write a script together, however having three
people in a "riff" session can be optimal. Plus, there's always
someone to break the deadlock.
* 4 people is too many to get anything done.
* Always know who you are sending material to. Unsolicited material sent
to a general address shows the intended recipient that you're not
connected. Thus you can't touch them.
* If you write for T.V/Film - Writers Guild the stuff. (See address
* Write as often and as much as you can. Find a network of comics
(always know the names) and work with them. They may not be famous
now, but a couple of years. $$$. Trust me.
* Have a really dysfunctional background.
* Probably the single most important thing about collaborative writing
is LEAVE YOUR EGO AT THE DOOR.
4. Protecting your work:
1. How to copyright your work:
Copyright FAQ site:
Or, get a form TX (free from your local public library) and fill it
out. Send it, with $20 to:
The Register of Copyrights
Library of Congress: (http://lcweb.loc.gov/copyright/)
Washington, D.C. 20559
Send it certified mail.
2. Register it with the Writer's Guild. $20 per script for non-members.
Writer's Guild of America, East, Inc.
555 West 57th Street
NY, NY. 10019
Writer's Guild of America, West, Inc.
8955 Beverly Blvd.
West Hollywood, CA 90048
(310) 550-1000 Ext. 502
To register by mail, send an unbound loose leaf copy of your script
along with a cover letter requesting registration. Include your name,
Social Security Number, return address, and phone number. Send it
certified or registered mail to:
Writer's Guild of America, West, Inc.
7000 W. 3rd St.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
5. In order to appear in any major motion picture, you must have a Screen
Actors Guild (SAG) card. It's a catch-22 though. You can't appear on screen
until you get a card, and you can't get a card until you appear on screen.
Here's their number.
Screen Actors Guild
6. Here is a list of comedy clubs by city. Addresses, phone numbers, show
times, and open mike opportunities are listed if available.
Sandy Springs, GA
Open Mike Tuesdays @ 8PM.
Lottery drawing for spots. Call if you are from out of town.
Comedy House Theater
Call Paula Jones for booking and auditions.
A rite of passage. Open Mike Thursdays @ 10 pm. Call by 9 to sign up
Capitol City Comedy Club
Formerly know as The Laff Stop
Open Mike Mondays (sporadically). Call for details 512.467.2333
Cnr CAXTON & JUDGE STREETS
(07) 3369 0555
Sydney Comedy Store
Cnr Parramatta Rd
Crystal Street, Petersham
Open Mike on Wednesdays
Harold Park Hotel
Harold Park Racecourse, Glebe
Open Mike: Monday nights (call early)
The Star Dome
Open Mike on Thursday
Contact Tim Spinosi or Deena. (205) 444-0008
Showcases Sun-Wed. Hypnotist Thurs. Headliners Fri & Sat.
Hong Kong Restaurant
1236 Mass Ave
Open Mike Sundays @ 8:00
Dick Doherty's Comedy Vault at Remington's Restaurant
124 Boylston St., Boston, MA.
Showtimes: Thur, Fri and Sat 9:00pm Sunday Open Mike 9pm, $10 per person
The Hong Kong Restaurant
Cambridge, MA 02138
"Try the scorpion bowls"
Nick's Comedy Stop
Call Mike Clark.
Nick's Comedy Stop
Call Vinnie Favorito. 617-482-0930.
Showcases Wednesday night
Ramada Inn lounge
Showcase Fri @ 9. Call Jeff
The Vault at Remingtons (http://www.dickdoherty.com)
Open Mike on Sundays
Contact Dick Doherty. 617-729-2565. 800-401-2221.
Call on Wednesday, ask for Tom. Bring 2 or 3 people at $5 each for the
Le Chateau (Basement Bar)
Park St, Bristol, UK
Open shows every second Wednesday.
open mike nites on Thurs.
Open mikes on Thurs Nite. Call Sunday at midnight. The first five messages
left on the answering machine will get a spot.
Hiccups Comedy Club (http://www.rochesterny.com/mall/21b2.htm)
120 E Main St (in the Rochester Riverside Hotel)
Jester's Comedy Club
239- 10th Avenue SE
This independent club has open mike on Thursdays, is pretty supportive with
amateurs, usually allowing 5 minutes per open miker.
Yuk Yuk's Komedy Kabaret
5940 Blackfoot Trail SE
Open mike on Thursdays, but allots time to amateurs according to how well
the staff knows you. This is 2-3 minutes if you're new to them, and more if
they like you.
The Comedy Catch
For booking call (423) 629-2233 Steve Plemmons 423-855-1052 Open mike
Sunday nights. Local openers during the week.
The Subterranean Cafe & Cabaret 2011 W. North Avenue (Wicker Park)
Shows every Thursday @ 9:00. Guest sets available if you call.
Laff's Comedy Corner
1305 N Academy Blvd.
Colorado Springs CO 80909
Workshop Tuesdays 5:30-7:00. Open mike 8:00 Tuesdays, bring a VHS tape to
have your set recorded on house equipment.
1305 N. Academy Blvd.
Colo. Springs, CO 80909
2390 S. Hamilton Rd.
Mondays @ 10:PM
Clancy's Down Under
520 S. High St.
Treehouse Comedy Club
Longhorn Cafe, I-84 Exit 15
Southbury, CT 06488
Shows Saturday night @ 9:00. 203-264-4343. 203-794-1222
Backdoor Comedy Club
Don Carter's East, Skillman & NW Highway
Showcases Thu - Sat 9PM.
Contact Jan or Linda. 214-601-2204
Comics on Tap
The Village Clubhouse
Contact Bill Cheek. 214-891-8267
Hyena's Entertainment Showcase
604 Main St.
Fort Worth, TX
Wed-Sun 8:00. 2nd show Fri & Sat 10:30
Sign up during the week for Wed & Thurs.
Improv Comedy Club
4980 Beltline #250
(214) 404-8501 (214) 404-0323
Shows every night 8:30. 2nd show Fri & Sat 10:30.
Best of Dallas on Wednesdays, call at noon to get a spot.
Tough to find stage time here. Easier if you're from out of town.
The Comedy Club
1226 15th St.
open mike every Tuesday
Joey's Comedy Club/ Kickers All American Grill
36071 Plymouth Rd.
Livonia, MI 48150
Friday nights @ 8:30 Call Wed. before show (941) 687-2678
Comedy House Theater
Tuesdays @ 8:30 Call that morning for spots.
3-5 CLEAN minutes. NOTE: This room is ALWAYS packed, including open mike
night.They seat 300,and usually turn people away due to overcrowding.
Love's Downtown Jazz and Comedy Club
610 S. Lee St.
P.O. Box 1541
Kingsland, GA 31548-1541
HOUSTON, TX (http://www.houston-press.com/1997/current/lcomedy.html)
The Comedy Showcase
The Comedy Club
Shows Fri & Sat 7:30 and 9:45. Second show Friday is Open Mic
Contact Darlene Jolley
Crackers Comedy Club
8702 Keystone Crossing
Indianapolis, IN 46240
One show nightly Tues. thru Thurs. & Sun., Fri. & Sat. 2 shows
Features and headliners are booked through TSM Artists, Inc., Box 4129,
Louisville KY, 40204
Manager: Sandy Diperna
Broad Ripple Comedy Club
6281 N. College Ave.
Indianapolis, IN 46220
One show Tues.-Thurs., 2 shows on Fri., 3 shows on Sat.
Indianapolis Comedy Connection
247 S. Meridian Street
Indianapolis, IN 46225
One show Tues.-Thurs., 2 shows on Fri., 3 shows on Sat.
Elaine from the Ice House makes most of the booking decisions for all
One Liners Comedy Club
50 Airport Parkway
Greenwood, IN 46142
Started by Dave "The King" Wilson. Dave used to work regularly at Crackers
as a headliner. When he opened this club, the other three clubs in town
refused to hire anyone who worked for him. Comics who don't work for him
can work at all three of the other clubs.
Coburg St., Cork
Tel/Fax: +353 21 501206
Contact Brian Coughlan
JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA
Hysterix Comedy Bar
Elk Point Rd.
Ask for Dick Clark. 702-588-3899
Just For Laughs
Shows 7 nights @ 8:30, plus Fri & Sat @ 10:30.
Open Mike on Sat.
Open Mike every other Thursday @ 9PM.
Sign up @ 8 PM. 5-10 min.
Open Mike on Sat.
Open Mike on Sat.
Melrose Bar and Grill
2327 S. Eastern Ave.
Fri. and Sat. nights, in between band sets 10 min.
They're Nobodys Comedy Club
Thu & Fri 8:30. 15-20 minute showcases
World Trade Center Casino
1067 Griffith Avenue
Tues. nights 7:00 sign up for 8:00 show 5-10 min. PG material preferred.
The Comedy Store
Alternative Comedy Show every Monday.
The Ice House
24 N. Mentor Ave
Open Mike 2nd and 4th Saturday of every month
LA Cabaret Comedy Club (http://www.la-cabaret.com)
17271 Ventura Boulevard
Encino, CA 91316
(818) 501-3737 Fax: (818) 501 3749
OPEN MICS: Call first, stop by, to check on their policy for comedy. Some
may require advance sign-up; some may only allow music.
The Basement Coffeehouse
Echo Park United Methodist Church
1226 Alvarado St.
Saturday open mic (comedy okay)
19221 Ventura Blvd.
(818) 342-3405 Sunday open mic 3-5 pm (comedy?)
9250 Reseda Blvd.
Thursday comedy open mic w/ Stacey Jill Jackin
10780 Jefferson Blvd.
Culver City, CA
Wednesday, Circus de Cafe, open mic (comedy?)
5th St. Dick's Coffee Co.
3347 1/2 w. 43rd Place
Leimert Park Village
Monday: comedy night (could be open mic)
Greens & Grounds
124 N. San Fernando Blvd.
You get 5-7 minutes. Not exclusively comics.
Grounds Zero Cafe
7554 Sunset Blvd.
Tuesday open mic comedy 7:30 sign-up
The Horseshoe Coffee House
14568 Ventura Blvd.
Sherman Oaks, CA
Every Wed "Wise Guys" Comedy Open Mic Sign up: 8:00 Show 9:00 p.m.
Hyperdisc music store and coffeehouse
2623 Main Street
Santa Monica, CA
Monday open mic night with Maureen Davis-Russak 6:30 sign-up (comedy?)
The Kindness of Strangers
4378 Lankershim Blvd.
Universal City, CA
Fri-Sat: Jeff Jam, open mic comedy Wed: open mic (comedy?)
Little Frida's Coffee House
8730 Santa Monica Blvd
West Hollywood, CA
Wednesday: Women with Balls comedy showcase (don't know if this is open or
not, don't know if this is lesbian club or not, but...)
Santa Monica, CA
Open Mike Sundays @ 7, sign up @ 6:30.
Petterson's Frish Rost
10019 Venice Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA
Tuesday comedy night (could be open mic)
399 West Sixth Street
San Pedro, CA
Wednesday open mic (comedy?)
San Gennaro Cafe
9543 Culver Blvd.,
Culver City CA
Sign up 6:30pm show at 7:00pm Tuesdays. Showcase night: Friday.
4019 Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA
Every Wed. Open Mic hosted by Pammy Sue Comics
(213) 661-3476 to pre-sign Show at 8:15 pm
Un-Urban Coffee House
3301 Pico Blvd.
Thursday: Comedy Crunch comedy open-mic
Barracuda Comedy Club
38 Hampstead High Street
The Comedy Store
No 1 Oxendon Street
Yuk Yuk's Komedy Klub
(519) 680-1090. (519)680-1091
Open Mic last Thursday of every month. Contact Gerry Blais.
502-459-5532 (ask for Sueann). 502-459-0022 (Bret)
Booked by: TSM artists p.o. box, 4129 Louisville, Ky 40219
The Laughter Lounge (http://www.personal.u-net.com/~zy/comedy.htm)
Steve Vernon on 0374 978634
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Open Mike on Tuesdays
Fort Lauderdale, FL
Open Mike on Tuesdays
The Comedy Corner
West Palm Beach, FL
The Comedy Zone
Miami Beach, FL
10 minute spots on Wednesdays.
One Night Stan's
Tuesdays 8:30 Just show up
Open Mike on Sundays. Call on Wednesday.
Knucklehead's Comedy Club
Located in the Mall of the Americas
Mostly major national acts.
Acme Comedy Co.
708 N. 1st Street
Mpls. Mn. 55414
National headliners and features Tue-Sat.
Open Mike / Showcase Monday nights, 6:30 - 7:00 signup, 8:00 showtime.
Performance comes down to a random drawing. Out-of-towners who want to
audition for a feature spot contact Greg Langer and ask for a guest set.
18th & Nicollet
Tuesday nights open mike. Show up around 7:30 and ask for Dave Basham.
Scott Hansen's Comedy Gallery
St. Paul, Minnesota.
(612) 331 5653
The Comedy Nest (http://www.iti.qc.ca/iti/users/sean/cn/cnhome.html)
THE LAUGHING LADY OPEN MIKE
516 Jersey Ave.
Jersey City, NJ
5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursdays. 201-332-9023
New Brunswick, NJ
(908) 545-HAHA. Open Mike Wednesdays. Call first.
425 Pleasant Valley Way
West Orange, New Jersey
(973) 736 - 2726
Open Mike on Mondays in warm weather.
Dona Ana Repertory Theater (http://www.barking.com/comedy)
PO BOX 8437
Las Cruces, NM 88006-8437
(505)525-0904. Contact Mark Kuker (email@example.com)
NEW YORK CITY
Boston Comedy Club
82 W. 3rd St.
Send material to Steve Po
PO Box 515
Millrift, PA 18340.
Please do not call the club.
Catch a Rising Star
1487 First Ave. near 77th Street.
(212) 794-1906. (212) GO-CATCH.
Shows: Sunday -Thursday 9pm, Friday 8:30pm and 11pm, Saturday 8pm and
Collective Unconscious (http://www.weird.org/)--Reverend Jen's Anti-Slam
145 Ludlow Street between Stanton and Rivington
Open Mic Wednesday nights 7:45-11:15, signup at 7:30
117 MacDougal Street between W. 3rd. and Bleecker.
The Comic Strip
1568 Second Ave. between 81st and 82nd St.
Shows: Monday - Thursday 9pm, Friday 8:30 and 10:45, Saturday 10:30pm and
Open mike on Mondays.
You have to wait in line every 3 months or so to get a number which
determines your night. Your night can be 4 months down the road.
21st St. between 5th & 6th Ave
1118 First Ave. bet. 61st and 62nd St.
Shows: Sunday - Thursday 8:45pm, Friday 9pm and 11:30pm, Saturday 8pm,
10:30pm, and 12:30am.
Down The Hatch
179 W. 4th St.
Gladys Comedy Room (In Hamburger Harry's)
145 West 45th
Open Mike on Wednesday @ 8:00.
Open Mike Tues & Thurs 4:30-7:30 PM.
Other shows Fri & Sat.
Call Club Manager, Chris.
Gotham Comedy Club
34 W. 22nd St. between 5th & 6th Ave.
Open Mic Tue & Thu 5PM- 7:30PM
358 W. 44th St. between Eigth and Ninth Ave.
Shows: Sunday - Thursday 9pm, Friday - Saturday 9pm and 11:15pm.
The New York Comedy Club (http://members.aol.com/nycomclub/index.html)
241 East 24th Street
Open Mic Mondays, 4PM. Ask for Steve or Al.
Two Drink Minimum. 1-800-32-FUNNY
8th Ave & 16th St.
Open Mike Mondays 7-midnight. Sign up 6:45.
NOTE: This open mike is NOT the famous Rebar show
Open Mike Monday @ 9PM.
12 Avenue A
Contact Bill Sherman (firstname.lastname@example.org)
236 West 78th Street, near Broadway.
Surf Reality--Faceboy's Open Mike Night
172 Allen Street between Stanton and Rivington
Open Mic Sunday nights, signup at 7:45. Show runs until 4 AM.
Talk of the Village
Bleecker St. between Thompson & Sullivan
Contact Jim McCue
West End Gate
Broadway between 113th & 114th
Open Mike Tue & Wed 4-8PM
Tough room. Easiest room to get time in.
229 E. Sheridan
Oklahoma City, OK
Free Comedy workshop every Sunday at One O'Clock. Laff It Off Showcase,
first Tuesday of the month
The Funny Bone
Address: Pleasure Island at Disney Lake Buena Vista
Phone: (407) 934-7781.
Seven shows nightly from 8:15 p.m., stage shows and comedic characters.
Address: 120 N. Orange Ave. (in Court Yard Cafe), downtown Orlando
Phone: (407) 629-2665
Shows at 8 and 10 p.m. and midnight Fri. & Sat., Showcase night at 8p.m. &
10 p.m. Wed.
COCONUTS COMEDY CLUB
Cappuccino's Restaurant Address: 927 W. State Road 436, Altamonte Springs
Phone: (407) 682-0071.
Hours: 8:30 p.m. Fri. & Sat.
THE COMEDY ZONE
Holiday Inn Address: 6515 International Drive, Orlando
Phone: (407) 351-3500
Hours: shows at 8:30 and 10:30 p.m. Fri & Sat., 8:30 p.m. Wed. and Thu.
THE COMEDY ZONE
Holiday Inn Address: 626 Lee Road, Winter Park
Phone: (407) 645-5233 Hours: shows at 8 and 10:15 p.m. Fri. and Sat. , 8
CARROLL VALLEY COMEDY CLUB
Call Sheree (email@example.com)
The Comedy Cabaret
Roosevelt Blvd (Rte 1)
Open Mike Wednesday at 8:30. Be there before 8:15 to get on the list.
The Star Theater
Ask for Louis
PORTLAND, ME (Sorry, nothing in Smyrna)
The Comedy Connection
Harvey's Comedy Club
436 NW 6th
The owner is Barry Kolin. Or call David Tribble, he has a bunch of one
niters around the area (360) 693-2613
Charlie Goodnight's Restaurant-club
861 W. Morgan St., Raleigh, NC
919-828-5233. 919-833-8356. Frank King 919-834-4765
Duffy's Back Side Comedy Club
Falls of the Neuse Road, Raleigh, NC
SAN FRANCISCO, CA
Black Thorn Tavern
Irving Street (between 9th & 10th Avenues)
San Francisco, CA
9 PM 1st & 3rd Thursday of the month. M.C. Gary Cannon
Showcases Monday Nites. Must be clean.
Haight and Fillmore
Open Mike, Wednesdays @ 8:00 PM
108 Cabrillo Hwy. N.
Half Moon Bay
Open Mike, Thursdays @7:30 PM
Talk to Aury - 415-726-1304 or 415-726-5705
Cobb's Comedy Club (http://www.webcom.com/shownet/cobbs/)
2801 Leavenworth (at The Cannery)
San Francisco, CA
(415) 928-4320. (415) 928-4445
Curtain Call (may be closed)
Emery Bar and Grill
5800 Shellmond Street
8-10 PM Monday Nights M.C. Deborah Douglas
1466 High Street
Open Mike Tues @ 9:00 PM
Geoffrey's Inner Circle
410 14th St.
Open Mike Wed @ 8:30 PM
Java On Ocean
1700 Ocean Ave and Faxon
San Francisco, CA
Open Mike Sat. 7:00 PM - Talk to Malcolm 415-587-3126
Java N' More
Open Mike on Saturday @ 7:30 PM
Church St. & Clipper St.
Jean Armstrong 415-824-6601
Clement and 5th Ave
San Francisco, CA
Open Mike, Tues & Sat. 9:00 PM
Josie's Cabaret and Juice Joint
3583 16th St, San Francisco
Gay/Lesbian/Bi Open Mic every Monday @ 8:00PM. Sign up 2 weeks in advance
Open Mike on Tuesdays @ 7PM
1007 Market St.
The Marsh’s Mock Cafe (http://www.saber.net/~mearth/MockCafe.htm)
1074 Valencia Street
SF, CA 94110
(415) 826-5750 #2
Contact Lisa Bodecker (415) 332-9595 work 2-6pm. (415) 681-5850
Open Mic 9-10 pm every Saturday (sign up as early as 7 pm) followed by
“Late Night Laughs” with featured stand-up comics, 10 p.m. $5-7.
One World Cafe
1799 McAllister St.
Open Mike on Friday @ 7:30 PM
444 Battery St. SFCA
Open Mike on Sundays @ 9:00.
Ask for Hutch 415-397-4337
Tyrone's on Broadway
Open Mike Wed @ 8:00 PM
talk to Tony Sparks
San Jose, CA
Upfront Comedy Classics
Fridays and Saturdays at 11:30PM. Contact Cash Landy.
Belltown Theatre Center
Open Mike 1st & 3rd Friday of the month, 11 PM
Open Mike Thursday
3405 Fremont N
Open Mike Sunday, 9 PM
Giggles Comedy Nite Club
53rd & Roosevelt
Open Mike Sundays, 8 PM
Swannie's Comedy Underground (www.comedyunderground.com)
222 S. Main
Open Mike Monday and Tuesday 8:30
University Sports Bar & Grill
5260 University Way NE
Open Mike Wednesday, 8:30
McCurdy's Comedy Club
Contact Les McCurdy
Rooster T Feathers Comedy Club
157 W. El Camino Real
Open Mike Mon @ 8:00 PM
Talk to Jessica (408)736-0921
Connextions Comedy Club
(419) 867-9040 (recording)
(419) 867-9041 (person)
Amateur Showcase Wednesday Nights Be one of the first 3 callers that Monday
The Ben Wick's Pub
24 Parliament St.
Alternative Comedy Thursdays at 9PM. An open stage to any and all
Red Spot Lounge & Bar
459 Church St.
Contact David MacLean (firstname.lastname@example.org)
800 Steeles Ave. W. Unit 11B
Thornhill, ONT L4J7L2 Canada
Contact Boris Chernak
Yuk Yuk's Komedy Kabaret - Superclub Toronto
2335 Yonge Street
(416) 967-6431 ext. #228
Sink or Swim Mondays. Call 10:00 AM Monday morning to be one of 14
comedians that night.
Open Mike Tuesdays at 8:00. Call Dave (?) Tues. afternoon to get on list.
Tulsa Comedy Club
71st & Sheridan
Open Mike most Tuesdays 8pm, no call ahead needed
The Comedy Circuit
Johnny B's Comedy Club
177 West 300 South
Provo, UT 84601
Showtimes: Thurs 9, Fri & Sat 8 & 10.
Contacat Johnny Biscuit (owner), Terry Taylor
TV clean comedy in the heart of Mormon country. Open Mike Thursday only.
Once a month showcase primarily for local talent.
2324 S. Redwood Road
Salt Lake City, UT 84119
Call Carmen @ (801) 972- 9688 or (801) 531-8280 for showcase or booking.
Corner of Columbia @ 4th
7. Agents and Promotional Agencies
UNITED KINGDOM AVALON
25 Litchfield Street, London. WC2H 9NJ.
Tel: 0171 497 2656 Fax: 0171 379 0325
Avalon is one of Britain`s leading comedy management and promotions agency.
Avalon is credited with the National Comedy Network, Britain's largest
network of regional comedy clubs.
Mezzanine floor, 235 Regent Street, London. W1R 8AX.
Tel: 0171 439 8401 / 0171 872 0089 Fax: 0171 409 2070
Established in the entertainment biz for 50 years.
OFF THE KERB PRODUCTIONS
The Old Bakery, 6a Philip Walk, London. SE15 3NH.
Tel: 0171 732 4018/1473 Fax: 0171 639 7021
Off the Kerb Productions has been providing the best alternative comedy
since 1993. It programmes comedy for a variety of festivals including
Glasgow Mayfest, Reading, Phoenix and Manchester.
RBM Garden Studios
11/15 Betterton Street, London. WC2H 9BP.
Tel: 0171 379 0344 Fax: 0171 379 0801
Multi-award winning agency - one Perrier winner, four Perrier nominees,
three Time Out winners - RBM has presented a varied and stimulating number
of acts over the last seven years.
RICHARD STONE PARTNERSHIP
25 Whitehall, London. SW1A 2BS.
Tel: 0171 839 6421 Fax: 0171 839 5002
RSP represents performers, writers and producers.
8. Books about being a stand-up comedian.
Be a Stand-Up Comic, or Just Look Like One. A Comedy Career Guide.
Bob Stobener, R. Scott Edwards.
Laughs Unlimited. 1989 ISBN 0-9624792-0-9
Decent how-to book. Small book 120 p.
Comedy Writing Step By Step
How to Write and Sell Your Sense of Humor
Distributed by Samuel French Trade
This book is full of useful tips from a veteran comic writer. Makes a good
addition to the comic's reference bookshelf.
Comic Lives - Inside the World of American Stand-Up Comedy.
By Betsy Borns, Simon & Schuster, 1987.
Great inside look at what it was like in the clubs and on the road for over
50 headline comics like Jerry Seinfeld, Steven Wright and Paul Reiser.
The Comic Toolbox
Ha Bloody Ha
By William Cook. Fourth Estate, 1994 ISBN 1-85702-180-0
Interviews with successful stand-up comedians, mostly British. The bulk of
the book is thirty comics talking about their life, experiences and art.
By Andrew Llessat (Brad Tassell) (email@example.com)
527 N Greenriver Rd.
Evansville, IN 47715
Send $10 to get a signed copy.
Hell Gig is one mans journey through the business of stand up comedy.
Working on the road fifty weeks a year. It's funny, poignent and has been
called required reading for anyone interested in how much it takes for a
comedian to get his act to the stage, and more.
How to be a Stand-up Comic
Richard Belzer, Larry Charles, and Rick Newman.
Carol Publishing Citadel Book. 1988 ISBN 0-8065-1319-5.
Not a bad book. More entertaining then enlightening.
How To Be Funny. Discovering the Comic in You
Steve Allen with Jane Wollman
Prometheus Books. 1992 ISBN 0-87975-792-2
Good book about the stand-up as an art form. How it works, what not to do,
etc. Good to tap into his experience (which is vast). The Laugh-Makers.
How to Make 'Em Laugh 'Til it Hurts
Gerald Wolfe (firstname.lastname@example.org)
2514 34th St.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
This book details the secrets of 20 great comedians.
Make 'Em Laugh
Prometheus Books. 1993 ISBN 0-87975-837-6
Good book written in a conversational style. As if you visited with Steve
and he talked about comedy. Lots of history and anecdotes.
The Penguin Book of Women's Humor
Talks about the differnce between male and female humor.
Slapstick: An Illustrated History
By Tony Staveacre
Stand-Up Comedy as Art, Business, and Life Style.
McGill-Queen's University Press. 1990
High-brow analysis by interview of many comics about the comedy business in
Canada. Kind of stuffy reading, but some good content and statistical
information about the business.
Stand-Up Comedy, The Book
Dell Trade Paperback. 1989 ISBN 0-440-50243-8
Excellent book derived from her experience teaching a comedy workshop.
Highly recommended by some.
Successful Stand-Up Comedy Advice from a Comic Writer.
Samuel French Trade. 1993 ISBN 0-573-69916-X
Great book from one of Bob Hope's writers. Great insight into the inner
workings of stand-up.
Wake Me When It's Funny
A good book worth reading, half of which deals with sitcoms.
9. Comedy Periodicals
The Comedy USA Guide (A must for any comedian working the road)
I'm not sure which address is correct.
The Talent Directory: $45.95 (In The U.S.)
The Trade Directory: $35.95 (In The U.S.)
Or get both books together for only: $68.95 (In The U.S.)
COMEDY USA (old?)
2107 Van Ness Avenue, Suite 306
San Francisco, CA 94109
COMEDY USA (new?)
PO Box 69-252
Los Angeles, CA 90069
The Comic Bible. $10 per issue, $55 for six months.
Primarily focuses on New York City, but useful for all comics.
Just For Laughs (Comedy newpaper published quartely)
22 Miller Ave. Suite G
Mill Valley, CA 94941
Gene Perret's Round Table Newsletter
30941 W. Agoura Rd. #228
Westlake Village CA 91361
Gene Perret's Round Table And Comedy Services
2135 Huntington Drive, # 205
San Marino, CA 91108
LA Standup Directory
*Standup Comedy* (http://www.realpages.com/standup)
Newsletter Online and In Print
Contact: Craig Ralls 1-800-807-3828
1370 W Sixth St, Suite 305
Cleveland OH 44113
10. Comedy Software
8413 Stillwood Lane
Austin, Texas 78757
Milton Berle's Comedy Software
Beverly Hills, CA
Improv Maker Software (http://village.ios.com/~kassj/improv.html)
By James Kass (email@example.com)
Comedy Generator Software
By Vince Constantino
Comedy Writer Software (http://members.aol.com/ideascapes/comedy.htm)
By Vince Constantino
ScriptWright - Script Writing Software (http://www.columbia.edu/~gg2/)
Compuserve ShowBiz forum, Lib 14
Bill Hicks' Mailing List
Sacred Cow Productions
Fossil Creek Studio
PO Box 26231
Austin, TX 78755
THE COMEDY COACH (http://www.comedycoach.com/)
480 9th Avenue Suite A San Francisco, CA 94118
Phone (800) LAUGH-OK (415) 668-7955
Contact Neil Leiberman (Comedy@comedycoach.com)
Comedy Connections BBS 941-925-8585
For more info, firstname.lastname@example.org
Comic Relief (http://www.comicrelief.org.uk/menu.html)
Jay Leno's FAX line
First, you have to have a contract with Big Dog Entertainment. You can get
paid from 1-50 dollars, but the going rate is 10 dollars a line, more for a
Judy Carter's Stand-Up Comedy Workshops
2112 Walnut Ave.
Just For Laughs
Montreal Comedy Festival
51 Sherbrooke Street East
Montreal, Quebec H2X 1X2
Andy Nulman (email@example.com) or Andre Gloutenay
(514) 845-3155. (514) 845-4140 fax.
Humber Comedy Workshop (http://admin.humberc.on.ca:80/~comedy/)
NewsJoke Inc. (http://www.newsjoke.com)
Seems to be a fax/e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org) service for morning DJ's and
Al Rae's Online Comedy Workshop (email@example.com)
Greg Dean's (firstname.lastname@example.org) College of Comedy
310-285-3799 (outside Southern California)
800-3STANDUP (inside Southern California)
Contact Greg Dean (email@example.com)
ON-LINE HUMOR course (http://www.dialnsa.edu)
(212)229-5880 info & free bulletin.
FAX (212) 989-2928
Prof. Elliot Tiber (firstname.lastname@example.org)
The Sitcom Writer's Workshop
Thanks go to:
* Bernard Aboba (legalese)
* Cathe Alleger (CatheB@aol.com)
* Alooohaha (Alooohaha@aol.com)
* Dave Anthony
* Mary Armstrong (email@example.com)
* BaldGuy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Rick Barnes
* Allison Bell (email@example.com)
* Stuart O. Bronstein (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Kevin Burke (email@example.com)
* Bob Crawford (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Mark Farrell (email@example.com)
* Steve Gelder (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Nancy Gold (email@example.com)
* Marc Hershon (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Paul "Peekay" Hooper
* Chris Kania (email@example.com)
* David Kelman (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Fred Kerr (email@example.com)
* Jennifer Laurie (firstname.lastname@example.org
* Karen Lee (email@example.com)
* Dave Little (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Sue Lyon (email@example.com)
* Steve Marmel (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Liam McEneaney (email@example.com)
* Kim Millwater (LobstrLady@aol.com)
* Eugene Mirman (ebmF92@hamp.hampshire.edu)
* Billy Mitchell (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Pepperskul (email@example.com)
* Brent Piaskoski (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Tim "Swordfish" Mitchell(email@example.com)
* John O'Connell (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* James O'Connor
* JustStu (JustStu@aol.com)
* Sue Paluh (email@example.com)
* Erik Passoja (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Robin Pike
* Jim Robinson (email@example.com)
* Mark Saldanha (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Dan Savage (email@example.com)
* Tim "" Shell (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Siggy (email@example.com)
* Dana Snow (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Lawrence Thomas (email@example.com)
* Mike Welch (firstname.lastname@example.org)
* Jim Wright
Author's Home Page (http://rampages.onramp.net/~stevebo/)
This FAQ is Copyright 1995-1998 by Steven J. Silberberg, and is made
available as a service to the Internet community. It may not be sold in any
medium, including electronic, CD-ROM, or database, packaged with any
commercial product, or published in print, without the explicit, written
permission of Steve Silberberg
Copyright (C) 1995-1998 Steven J. Silberberg
Steve Silberberg (mailto:email@example.com)
Visit the Air Sickness Bag Museum at:
FACT: Buff Babes Dig Cut Dudes!