About nine years ago, a fellow comic Patsy B asked me if I would be in a documentary about stand-up comedy, so I said sure. She filmed, interviewed and had to go through eight film editors before it was completed, but it finally came out and I went to Gateway Film Center in Columbus to see the finished product on the big screen.
I actually am glad it took a while to finish, because I saw myself from eight years ago telling jokes at the Funny Bone. I was beardless, in better shape and appeared to have more hair (don’t tell my hair, I try not to provoke it more into falling out at my age). I also saw a version of a joke I tell now that went over well, but was way more unpolished. It was pretty interesting to me personally just to see what I thought at the time, although in all honesty, no one should listen to 32 year old single Chris. Bad idea.
Patsy did a really great job getting diverse opinions and advice from seasoned emcees, radio hosts, touring comics and even local veterans. I didn’t disagree with anything I saw in the movie and most of the advice was solid and necessary for anyone looking to start up in stand-up comedy. I will have to share when it becomes available to the public.
I would say my best tips for anyone looking to start doing stand-up are 1) be single and childless, 2) be crazy or dumb enough to try it, 3) record your sets, 4) don’t bother asking for advice until you do an open mic (personal pet peeve of mine – spending 35 minutes telling someone about timing and stage presence that will never actually get onstage) and 5) you’re not as funny as your friends (or you) think you are. Oh and lastly, don’t talk to me until you’ve done it for six months. That’s most important. I’m a big star in a documentary.
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