comedy open mic: 9 things you will need.
- •30 New ComediansThirty is the ideal number. Any less and there is a threat of a crowd coming along and staying. Any more and you may not get home before the usual 3am. If possible, at least half of the new comedians should have recently watched a Bill Hicks youtube clip and the other half should be telling one liners about porn.
- •No audienceRemember, it is not an open mic if there is a crowd. There will be one or two 'bringers' amongst the comedians. A 'bringer' being someone that brings friends along. This doesn't count as audience as they will not laugh at anyone besides their friend. Bringers should be put on last. Mostly you should only be performing in front of other 'comedians' who know all your material.
- •No stageAnother key to the success of an open mic is the lack of a stage. At an open mic you should share the same floor as everybody else, there should be no distinction between the actual floor and the comedic space. Ideally, everyone watching should be on high bar stools looking down at you.
- •Tv on next to stageAnother must for any open mic is the T.V next to the stage at max volume. This is usually at the request of the venue manager for the entertainment of the customers. If you are lucky, there will be a good football game on too.
- •No mic standJust because you have a mic doesn't mean you need a stand to put it in. There are much better options anyway. One is to hand it directly back to the mc after your set. The other option is to bail on your 5 minute set after 3 minutes while the mc is still in the toilet taking a leak. Don't worry, just look around awkwardly while holding the mic near your hip for 30 seconds then place it gently on the ground and leave.
- •Malfunctioning micThe malfunctioning mic is comedy gold. Who needs to hear your stuttery prerehearsed material clearly anyway. The malfunctioning mic gives you access to some real comedy legends such as " can you hear me?" and the all time classic "is this thing on?". Also, it is probably the reason why your Schwarzenegger impersonation didn't work.
- •No lightingDoes the guy at the bar who paid $4 for fries ask for lighting? Then why should you get it? They say Arrogance is the enemy of comedy. All asking someone to light up that dark corner under the TV will do is shine a spotlight on your uncontrollable ego.
- •Drunk RegularsThey were there before you got there and they will be there long after you leave. They will watch the entire show but they aren't the audience. They aren't comedians either but funnily enough they have a lot of great advice and wisdom to share. So stick around and have a chat about what you were doing wrong and how you might improve.
- •HopeThis is all you really need and you are gonna need a LOT of it.