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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Now that’s funny! » » Amatuer night (comedy club) (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

God-glorified
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Hey guys, this is to all you with some suggestions (especially those who have worked in the comedy clubs)
Im starting to do magic in comedy clubs. Recently I was invited to do a headlining segment in Atlantic City's club.
Even though I know what I'll be doing there, I would like to go to New York City this summer and go around doing the amatuer nights, however, Im not sure what I could do in only 5 minutes to establish myself as comedian and magician.
Any suggestions?
(It doesn't really need to be a hilarious routine, since the comedy should come from me, Im just unsure of a 5 minute (or less) effect)
Thanks
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
C Christian
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If your being asked to do a headlining segment I think going up to New York for a 5 min. spot is taking a huge step back....Start calling those New York Comedians and see if you can open up for any of them durring the summer or envite them to see you and see if you can pair up.
Hope this helps....
Chris
Wade Live
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Kevin james bowling Ball production! Open with that! It will kill for that style of show....

Wade
God-glorified
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Thanks:
Christian, that thought never really crossed my mind as they may give consideration!!
Wade Live, GREAT idea, I doubt theyll have music respect for amateur night so I'll have to come up with comedy patter.
Any other suggestions?
(This is also helpful for the MC bits)
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
Mac_Stone
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Martin Lewis' routines sound like the kind of thing you are looking for.
God-glorified
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Martin lewis, Thanks mac I'll look into him.........do you personally like any of them in particular?
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
Carl Skenes
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God-glorified,

Excuse me if I mis-read your original post, but if you are currently performing in comedy clubs and are booked to headline in Atlantic City, why do you need an opener to your act? I would think that you already have that, as well as performance locations with which to break in any new material.

Just wondering.
Dannydoyle
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Be funny and magical!

Depends on your style my friend.

I believe there is more to the story and he was simply summing up rather than giving us the whole story. Time is of the essence!

I have never heard the term "headlining segment" and it confuses me and I believe everyone is confused. If your doing the headline spot, then everyone is correct. If it is a special night they have concocted to do as a one time thing or some such beast then it makes perfect sense to me.

So it also depends on the answer to the question which situation you are speaking of.

I will tell you these things though. 5 minutes does NOT go as fast as you may think. And it seems a heck of a lot longer when ya bomb.

Next you have 30 seconds to get their attention. PERIOD. Even if your doing the 50 minute headline spot. Lose them in the first 30 and you will have to fight to get them back. If you lose them during a 5 minute spot, well you have no time to get them back so make sure you don't do this. So announce your presance with authority.Big name headliners capture them with the name alone. Most of us don't have this luxury!

Do not do story magic. People in clubs with drinks get lost. Do fast visual magic.

Just my 2 cents.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Lee Darrow
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And be prepared to take flack from the other comedians on the bill as "prop comics" are considered to be using a crutch because they rely on their props and not their material.

Open strong, link with the audience, talk TO them, not AT them, have fun WITH them, not AT their expense. And, above all, do stuff that they have NOT seen. If you get up and do material that they have seen on the latest TV magic special, you will be the main course at dinner - and you were just served on their plates.

Lastly, know how to enter and, more importantly - how to close. Make sure that your finish IS a finish. Don't hit them with a mediocre gag that seems to leave an opening for something more to come down the pike and just say "Thank you and good night" and walk off. That's not strong.

You want to leave them wanting more, but not going, "but he didn't finish the joke!"

Hope this helps!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
http://www.leedarrow.com
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Mac_Stone
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Actually G-G, I've only just seen the demos on his site (www.magikraft.com) but from what I see and hear they're killer. Once I buy his videos I'll post a full review.
God-glorified
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Thanks guys, I have carefully read the post from Danny and Lee (thats sounds oddly familiar) and are without a doubt applying them. Thanks on your advice on timing and how to talk TO the audience. Mac, I will check that out write away!
Carl, my apologies for the confusion, Danny was write as there is more, but I don't like LONG questions as that may have people think too specific and turn away some.

By headlining segment I mean what danny says as a concoction of one or two comedy magic stand up nights. I have "done" an amateur night or performed in a comedy club, but every saturday downstairs from the comedy stop is a houdini theatre where I put on a few 45 min stand up comedy magic shows during the course of the day. This is where I got the connection to perform there as it is sort of a variety for them.

I said segment to say that I am not a "headliner" and have never had the 5 min slot for a magic performance. So Im not looking for an opener since I have that but not only is it longer than 5, it leads into the rest of my show.
Hope this helps, sorry again for the confusion if I was misleading
and thanks again!

Posted: May 14, 2006 2:25pm
Lee,
I noticed you mentioned the contention that goes on between comics and comic magicians, I have heard this before and was wondering if it REALLY is a big deal. I don't really care what the other comics think of me but will the owners and people that really count do the same even if I'm just as funny?
(I don't want to kill my chances of headlining, but then again, I don't really know how one gets a headlining segment in your average club.)
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
Lee Darrow
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If you make the people laugh, the owners will be happy. If you make the people laugh and applaud, te owners will be happier. If you make the people laugh, applaud and give you a standing ovation, the owners will be delighted... and the other comics will, at that point, either suck up to you, mug you in the parking lot or start stealing your material.

;)

The owners worry about their bottom line - how much money they make - and that's really the deciding point. If you do well, you will be asked back. If you develop a following, you will be asked back repeatedly and other clubs MAY become interested in you. MAYBE.

But beware of the creature called the "predatory agent." This is a creature somewhere on the evolutionary scale between pond scum and al Qaeda terrorist, well below anything even remotely resembling human and is often found wearing sharkskin suits, that stupid single horn necklace, with a loud shirt, open almost to the navel and claiming to represent a number of "big name stars" most of whom are well on their way to being nobodies, if they ever were anybodies in the first place. They often look like they escaped from a disco in the late 70's and forgot to update their wardrobes. They are also sometimes found in the company of surgically-enhanced females with seemingly surgically-limited IQ's as well. Drugs, bank rolls that SEEM to be large (usually only the first three bills on the roll are real, the rest of the roll is toilet paper) and a slightly out-of-date flashy car complete the ensembles of these slime-trailing creatures.

Comedy clubs, especially on amateur nights, are their primary habitats. They are usually too loud, claim to "know everyone" and, when checked out, usually fail the "smell test" as to credibility, miserably.

This imitation of life will attempt to sign you to an exclusive contract so that he can "represent" you in any further bookings you will ever have in your life.

What this really means is that he will get anywhere from 15% to 50% of whateever you make on ANYTHING you book, no matter WHO books it, from then on!

In several states, this is illegal to do BUT, once signed, is enforcible (try figuring THAT one out - you will need LOTS of asprin!).

RUN, do not walk, away from ANYONE offering you such a program, at least at this stage of your career.

Hope this helps!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
http://www.leedarrow.com
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Dannydoyle
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Lee, your right and your wrong.

There is so much comedy work right now that the guys really don't resent magicians as much as they used too. The tide has shifted to hating those who simply are not funny. Which is good.

Understand one more thing guys. Your job as a comedy club anything is to keep people paying attention, while the owner sells them as many drinks as humanly possible. I have seen guys NOT too funny, who for some reason the people they draw, but tons of drinks. Who do you think gets the job?

One thing to consider also, is this. 5 minutes is tough as can be. Tough to get them on board. Tough to get them rolling and tough to close them! It helps to do this stuff, but don't be discouraged by it if it dosn't go so well.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Joey Evans
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I have to agree. Magicians aren't as hated as they once were. I heard that several times before my first few runs, so I was nervous. But it's simply not the case. As far as predatory agents, pretty much they all are. No one should do comedy clubs for the money, ecspecially starting off. You only make half way good money in the A rooms and even then it's a fraction of what you can make at corporate. The reason I still do it occasionally is, well, because it's pure. These people will laugh if you are funny, period. I've seen comedians such as Seinfeld bomb. It's all in how funny you are right then, TV credits aside.
Five minutes is a short time to get momentum. Momentum is your best friend, once you get them laughing, a simple face expression can send them into a frenzy. How ever come out at the beginning with that same expression, people will think you're insane. Be that as it may, if you're goal is a five minute routine. Keys are keep it slow, and just look comfortable on stage. This makes the audience comfortable and establishes your credibility. As far as routines, it's personal preferance, what is your funniest routine? But please leave the linking rings and your CD of Mozart in the car.
The Visual Comedy and Magic of Joey Evans

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The Impossible Has Never Been So Funny!
God-glorified
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HAHA thanks, theres a lot of truth and humor in what you are saying.
Joey, that's good because other than Whit Haydns comedy routine I stopped the rings (and I don't like mozart)
I am really doing the clubs because I feel that is a good place to START. If I want to book myself as the comedians magician at corporate events, I want something to easily tell them I am funny. (what comedy clubs Ive worked in will help) not to mention the experience factor, whereas, they will probably be the toughest joint to please.
My personal funniest routines would only be appropriate for if I had a larger amount of time as they are pieces. (and calls a spec. onstage which I don't want to do for amateur night)
Rcently I have been looking into John Archers material and thinking about putting some twists on his style of effects. (Tossed out deck, no spell book test)
AS a question: is it a fair environment there to do a tossed out deck? throwing the deck out having them stand up and such?
Thanks again for all the feedback
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
Joey Evans
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Tossing out a deck would work well. There's a lot of opportunity for comedy there. And it involves the audience, two sure fire winners. It'll take getting a knack, but you can get it.
Also, here is some other food for though, after reading your name and sig. Obviously, you won't play blue, or dirty, everyone else that does will have a MUCH easier time writing material than you. It's much easier if you can incorporate dirty language or shock value into your set. However, if you make a good solid routine without the blue material it will go a lot further. Some of the "best" headliners I work with are dirty as all get out, and never get corporate work. Their end game is there at the comedy club for $250 a night tops. So it'll take extra work, but it'll pay off in the end. Trust me!
The Visual Comedy and Magic of Joey Evans

http://www.Evansmagic.com/



The Impossible Has Never Been So Funny!
God-glorified
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Joey, thank you for your input and your encouragement (as well as everyone else again)
I do agree, it is a difficult journey sometimes making solid gold from solid clean material but I'm sure it can be done. Unfortunately sometimes it seems that when the comedian is REALLY clean (whether religious or just like playing that way) they are not always funny. But then again the same could be said for the opposite (the dirty).
If there is any more input feel free to write,
I will hopefully soon post what routine I will be doing when I work out the last touches.
Ephes. 2:8-9



For by GRACE are ye saved through faith; and that NOT OF YOURSELVES: it is the gift of God: NOT OF WORKS, lest any man should boast.
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