Open mic Vs. Comedian “Showcase”

Lets just face it, the word “open-mic comedy” is just another word for “get paying customers to buy a 2 drink minimum and maybe 1 or 2 of the comedians friends.”  I’m not sure why I put quotation marks there, but I felt that they needed to be there.  I’m going to get into the true meaning of the word “open mic” and “showcase/bringer” in just a little bit.  First, I’d like to let everyone know that I decided to write this blog because you never know what can happen to a person (ME) career wise and this will act as sort of a testiment to my comedy “career.”  The reason I say career the way I do is because as much as I love comedy, it is not my career.  I would never ever be able to live off of the $50 a month I make doing stand-up.  Im sort of getting side tracked away from the topic; the reason I’m writing this blog.  I have a dilemma on my hands each Wednesday night.  Theres an open mic in the City called “Motel Wednesdays” which is run by a fine gentleman Steve Rosso.  The open mic show is based in a small Basement of a bar called The Village Lantern.  The reason why I enjoy this open mic over any other open mic is because the five bucks each comedian has to pay gets given back to 2 winners at the end of each show.  A good friend of mine Hassan Madry introduced me to this show a few years ago.  Hassan is a comedian from Staten Island who I booked on my 1st ever show in Staten Island.  He sort of showed me some of the ropes in the comedy world.  He, along with some of the other regulars at this open mic are a staple at the village lantern.  Some comedians who’s names pop out at me (mostly for a good reason) aside from Hassan are Ray Combs, Hillary Schwartz, Dan Curry, Luke Cunningham, Matt Maragno,Dan Shaki, Dan St. Germain,  AAlap patel, and Elon James.  Any comedian who is mentioned in another comedians’ blog should feel a small feeling of encouragement (I know I would).  Back to explaining the difference between a Real show and a bringer/showcase show.  A showcase is very similar to a “bringer” show without using the word “bringer.”  The owner of the club, or promoter expects the comedian to bring at least 4 or 5 paying customers to the club.   Showcase/bringer shows usually consist of 4,000 comedians who get 5-8 minutes of time.  Actually, most of these shows have about 8-12 comedians who are expected to bring about 4-5 paying customers.  If you dot the math we’re looking at about 60 paying customers who are paying $5 each to get in and then a 2 drink minimum.   So if we sat here and did some math, we’re looking at $300 in door money (which the promoter gets)  and approx $900.00 in drinks as per the 2 drink minimum.  I’m not knocking open mics or bringer shows because I’ve done and still DO them.  I just want fresh comedians to understand the difference between these terms.  Put it this way;  when you get  a call from a producer or promoter or club owner and they ask you if you are free to headline their show, then you’ve come to a point in your career where you can probably stop doing these types of show.  Until then, don’t let the word “bringer” discourage you.  You can Do bringer and open mics and still get productive feedback from other comedians and audience members after the show.  Dont get me wrong, but if your cousin comes up to you after the show and says you’re the best DONT believe him.  On the contrary, if an audience member approaches you and says they were scared to take a sip of they’re drink because you were constantly making them laugh….thats a good thing, but don’t get cocky because 1 person thinks your funny.  One day it will all just make sense and you’ll know the difference between FUNNY and HACKY.  Im not sure how much I stayed on the topic at hand but I hope I’ve helped someone out there reading this crap.

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2 Responses to “Open mic Vs. Comedian “Showcase””

  1. Mr operator Says:

    i always thought an “open mic’ was when the worm shares a deep secret in his heart

  2. Mr Operator Says:

    I thought ‘open mic’ was when big worm shares something from his heart

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