Okay, when I said a chance to get on Conan, I didn’t actually mean get “on” Conan—I don’t know Conan personally, but from what I’ve heard, he’s a fairly private guy.
But you can get on his show… you know, the one on TBS…
Conan O’Brien and Ricky Gervais have teamed up to find the next comedy star!
That’s right! It’s an opportunity for you—and everyone else reading this blog—to record and submit 3 minutes of comedy.
See, Ricky has developed a new APP for the iPhone that allows you to say something into the phone and it tweets it automatically. He’s calling this app “Just sayin’.”
The contest is called the “Just Sayin’ Stand Up” contest and it’s happening right now; entries are open September 20th to October 21st with winners to be announced on November 7th. Wait—that’s my twins birthdays!
All you have to do is visit the contest site page, download the app to your iPhone and do your best 3 minutes.
Don’t have an iPhone—too bad!
No, wait! Come back! I was just kidding! If you don’t have an iPhone, you can still submit via a special portal on the Just Sayin’ website.
Are you still here? What are you waiting for?! Go get the app or submit via the portal and see if you can get your funny-ass on Conan!
Remember, it’s T.V. so it must be original, clean material and appropriate to air. No slanderous jokes, nothing that defames others… so, he’s taken all the fun out of it… it’s still a awesome opportunity!
So get over to the Just Sayin’ Comedy and submit your best three and best of luck!
Amateur Comedians Only!
Here’s something fun and it’s for amateurs only! That’s right. No professionals allowed to submit to this contest. This gives a beginning comedian an opportunity to get into a Nationally televised competition and get exposure completely free! But you have to get on it, because this deadline is quickly approaching! (July 12th, 2012).
So get your 2-minute video clip read and submit it to their comedy competition page. Be sure and read the rules and stuff to make sure you meet the requirements. It’s a typical contest for television. Here are the basics:
- Be clean
- All original material only
- Nothing controversial (judged by the network)
- Nothing offensive
- Nothing slanderous
- Nothing that defames others (Wow there goes my whole act!)
If you get selected, you get flown to New York City to be on the Today Show, which has around six million viewers! That’s a lot of exposure for one morning.
So get your set together and upload it to their site. Here’s the thing: you cannot submit a link to a video, you have to submit a file from your computer.
What Should I Submit?
It’s a two-minute contest so your material should get right to the point and have a laugh point every 18-20 seconds. It should have crystalized surprise so that the punch lines are tight and trigger laughs. Utilize some variation of a quick set up, punch and possibly an act-out. The submission doesn’t necessarily have to have a beginning, middle and end, but if you can make that happen in two minutes, go for it. These are just guidelines, of course so don’t let it stop you from submitting. I’ve seen some unexpected videos get chosen for these things. Just have fun!
So go submit to this comedy competition and Good luck!
I was wrong!
Many students have come up to me and asked, “Can I just put together a tape in my living room?” I’ve always said, “Absolutely not. You should never do that. Make sure shoot a tape that is in front of a live audience.”
Well comedian Jesse Popp proved me wrong. In this little quick interview, Jesse talks about doing comedy only three times before he shot a video of himself in his friend’s basement with three of his friends. “We set up a karaoke machine and a sheet against the wall, and one of my friends was holding a light up and at one point the lamp caught the sheet on fire and we had to do another take… I sent the tape into Comedy Central and it worked out I guess”
Jesse started in 2000 and since then, Jesse has appeared on several comedy shows including Conan, and Comedy Central’s “Half-Hour.”
The point is this: Even though it’s not recommended to send a tape out that you shot in your basement, never say “never.”
Sometimes the best choice is just to get it out there!
As part of my Comedy Classes series, I am including a post that was shared with me from another student. This is a segment from the BBC’s series on The Art of Stand Up (also available on YouTube and the BBC website). It features interviews with many popular comedians from the U.K. and the U.S.
One of the things I highly recommend is to listen to other successful comedians as much as possible. There’s so much to learn and their experiences can help us learn to avoid the mistakes they may have made and to be inspired by their commitment to the craft. I hope you enjoy this as much as I have.
My favorite quote from this video: “It actually is like being able to fly…” Awesome!
What’s your favorite comedy quote?
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Amy Gordon literally does her "no holes barred" approach to comedy. She’s a perfect example of how to be a funny woman. What makes this specific to a woman being funny? Well, the approach is all woman! If comedy is about surprise and shattering expectations, take a gander at how she approaches the mic with such a demure attitude, nicely dressed, carrying a purse, for crying out loud! But then… And if comedy is also about encountering obstacles as we try to accomplish something (Charlie Chaplin), she nails this in the most unexpected way. The reason she pulls this off is because there’s not a single time where she’s over-the-top. Everything is played as ‘real,’ from all of her expressions in the beginning to her trying (more obstacles) to hit the ‘high notes’ with the Kazoo. There are a few of reasons I posted this:
- To point out that when a comedian does an act-out like this the reactions have to be real. Comedy is about heighten REALITY, but it has to be real. If she went over-the-top with ‘mugging’ or was overtly sexy with the Kazoo ‘insertion’ (that just sounds weird doesn’t it?), then the piece would not play and the audience would be turned off. But she plays it just right, hitting all the beats on the way.
- The second reason I posted this is to show to those skeptical people out there that women CAN BE FUNNY, and this is a perfect example of how to be a funny woman.
- The third reason I’m posting this (and my original motivation for it), is to point out to the naysayers that just because she uses a prop doesn’t make it unfunny. One of my students was told by a "comedy teacher" not to do prop comedy. Let me put that bullshit to rest, there is nothing wrong with using a prop. But it’s like profanity; use it wisely. If you use a prop because you have no material, it will be viewed as just a distraction away from the fact that you don’t have any funny. Amy Gordon clearly has the audience "in love" with her and she’s using not one prop, but three, (four, if you include the purse).
You do have to be careful when you do prop comedy. Make sure the joke isn’t "punny," but solid. So take a look at this video. It’s 3:14 of solid laughs, right from the start and watch the way Amy uses every opportunity to trigger another laugh, while still keeping it real. This chick knows how to be a funny woman!
If you enjoy this video, please leave a comment. LET ME KNOW YOU’RE ALIVE!