Comedy Course Day 6: Audience want the ‘Comic’s Take’ on a story, not just the story

Only two sessions after this one and then we will be on our own. Released in to the wild to fend for ourselves!

This session was predominately about these 3min routines we each were preparing. To add a little more drama, we were split into groups of 3 and a Compere (one of the group who wasn’t doing their 3min routine, otherwise they would have to invite themselves on and off the stage, which we all thought might look slightly odd).

I had always had my eye on the role of Compere as a great way to gain additional stage time as well as being an actual Compere. I have also been thinking about setting up a Comedy Night in Notting Hill, allowing myself more flexibility at the same time as experience and maybe even some additional chump change.

As you hopefully have remembered I had decided to drop all my written material and take bullet points of a few ideas I had come up with over the last few months and see what happens.

It’s a funny experience hearing your name being called out and watching yourself walk onto the stage having no clue what is going to come out of your mouth.

I found myself starting with the fact that I had got married recently and started to chat about the massive bonuses of this in the way of cushions, hand wash and even toilet roll!

I then found myself suddenly going into the material I had written down. The material sounded relaxed, natural and nothing like the scripted crap I’d written. Maybe it was the fact that I already knew the story and assumed it would be boring, or just the fact that without an audience to respond to what your saying or doing, your inner-critic has room to chip away at your confidence.

Once we had all finished it was time to discuss. I realised that there were plenty of opportunities within the story to expand and add in afterthoughts, which would have enriched the story without sounding forced. I have plenty to work on and excited once again about the end of course show.

I have just realised that I might not have mentioned the final part of the course. Oops, maybe I should have said it at the beginning. Anyway, on the 9th Feb will be the show and also my first real stand-up performance!

The show will be at the Albany pub just off Portland St tube. So come along if you fancy it.

The Albany Pub. Great Portland St. Our new course location

The Albany Pub. Great Portland St. Our new course location

Right I’m getting distracted, back to the comedy course session at hand. I wanted to try out a bit of Compere duties, so stepped up to the plate to introduce the next group of 3 eager comic wannabes. It’s actually a lot harder than I was expecting, though it’s also more relaxed in a way, as it doesn’t seem to matter if a joke doesn’t really work, you can just point out that that was rather shit and it seems to get a laugh.

It’s a great way to practice material, so I am definitely going to push for as much Compere stuff as possible. If I set up my own comedy night then guess who will be Mr Compere?


Dan Tambling is a stand-up comedian, sketch comedy writer, actor and producer of ‘12 sketches in a London house’. This is his blog.


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