What all can Go Wrong while organizing a Comedy Show?

What all can Go Wrong while organizing a Comedy Show_blog_by_engage4more

A holistic article capturing all angles including technical, viewers, and the artists

The world is nothing but a comedy of errors and it’s only better to live it while laughing it off!

A comedy show isn’t fictional, it’s as real as it can get and because of this, it can get a bit catastrophic at times. Stand-up comedy is all about practice, and with every comedy of errors, a comedian learns something that helps them get it right for the next performance and it’s only understandable that it takes a rare show to get all the things right. It’s very unusual that a show gets funnier while things get worse. While a comedian can make many mistakes on the stage, sometimes they’re not even responsible for creating such an environment. But it’s only fair for a comedian to make mistakes and learn from them after all we are only human and making mistakes is always better than faking perfection.

A wise person is someone who learns from the mistakes of others so we have covered a few things that can go wrong and turn the comedy into tragedy in no time.

Technical issues

These are some of the major issues that can arise from the end of the management or the organizers due to technical faults-

1. Nothing’s worse than a faulty mic

Even after proper checks and trials, sometimes the technical errors cannot be helped. Though it is not the comedian’s mistake that the mic suddenly stopped working, but it may lead to a waste of time and the comedian also might get nervous which can hamper the performance. It is always advised to have a proper drill before the comedian actually goes live in order to neglect any issues.

Nothing’s worse than a faulty mic

2. Double-check the venue

One of the most disaster-prone areas is the venue where the artist performs. So many things should be kept in mind while choosing the venue for your comedy gig, as the location should be ideal with no hope of nuisance in the surrounding areas. You might even want to pick a location that isn’t near the airport or railway station for it might create disturbances. Also, pick a location that doesn’t have a limited parking area if you don’t want any annoyed faces in the audience. Double-check all the required details with the venue administrator and don’t shy away from asking questions. Keep in mind every little detail about the stage, the seating arrangements, washrooms, and the additional services.

3. Scheduling is the key when a comedy show is a segment within a large event

Every comedian knows the importance of time since the crowd can get restless if time is not dealt with properly. For instance, some comedy shows keep a music event before the comedian’s performance for the crowd to get settled but sometimes it can stretch for a longer period and the crowd might get weary before the actual performance even starts. The timing should be discussed keeping the audience and the scenarios in mind, like if it’s a corporate event, you might want to finish off early if you don’t want your performance to clash with the bar opening timings. There should be a detailed event flow prepared considering how the respective elements build or kill the audience’s excitement.

What all can Go Wrong while organizing a Comedy Show_blog_by_engage4more

4. Multiple briefings end up confusing the comedian

It’s never a good idea to confuse the comedians by giving them various inputs since it can be hazardous to the performance. The comedian already has a lot on his mind and it’s only right to make it as lightheaded for him as possible. It’s always better if a person is in charge of enlightening the comedian with input about the show and his/her performance to dodge those blurred lines. The worst scenario is to bring in star-struck individuals in the briefing sessions as they usually get carried away during the briefing sessions.

5. The audience might be seated too far

There are cases where the mic’s volume had a certain reach or the audience was seated too far which created a distance broad enough for the audience to not comfortably enjoy the performance of the artist. The round table seating arrangement can make it difficult for the comedians to roast the audience or communicate properly with them. The theatre seating setup works the best in a comedy show since people are seated close to each other facing the stage. Lighting can also make a big difference, people prefer to laugh freely when no one is watching so a dark room with a spotlight over the comedian is the best setup for a comedy show. Lack of trained personnel or technical issues like the speakers might be placed wrongly or the mic doesn’t have the wavelength required in the particular room can be some issues that should be taken care of. This mistake can make the performance look off or not entertaining enough. This happens quite often at the corporate shows, where there is not enough time to prepare and run through the customized content, and because of the novelty of the venue, sometimes the team fails to make proper arrangements.

6. The Virtual Trend

Ever since the pandemic happened, people are getting comfortable with virtual reality, and with that entertainment business has also taken a swing and gone virtual, engaging people from the comfort of their homes. Stand-up comedians have also blessed the online world, making people laugh like they are a part of a live show. But a lot of things should be kept in mind to conduct a successful live comedy show online. The most basic being the wifi signal should be strong so that the flow doesn’t break because of the connection. The organizers should go through the script together with the comedian before the performance. The in-person chemistry between the audience and the comedian is essential and the organizers should keep in mind that every online need is being met for the comedian to give an over-the-top performance. 

7. Hospitality Experience given to the Artist

The hospitality experience given to the artist is perhaps where it all starts and ends and is the root of the whole show. If the artist is received and entertained by the team properly, the show will be as sleep as a sheik, and if not it might even get catastrophic. It starts from receiving the artist from the airport to making sure the artist is not late to the venue and all his needs are taken care of in a very efficient way. It’s always better to be well prepared than to counter any misadventures at the last minute.

8. Ain’t Nobody got time for repetitive content

It is very important to make sure that you don’t repeat the same comic for the same audience. Even if the organizers want to repeat the same comedian, it is always better to clarify it well in advance with him/her so that they can prepare and perform something else and the repetition doesn’t take place. People expect creativity and repetitive performance can leave a bad impression on the audience which can leave a mark.

From the Viewers’ point of view

We all have seen at least one example of a comedy show being disturbed because of the audience. While no one can stop those who mean harm, some mistakes can be prevented and we’re here to tell you the dos and don’ts when it comes to managing the content part.

1. Keep that ringer off!

It is advised to keep the phone ringer off since it can get in between the performance of the comedian. While it can be a disaster if the phone turns out to be that of the comedian, in a situation when the audience is seated not too far from the stage, someone’s phone can create distress for the comedian who might get nervous and forget his/her lines and honestly, even if there’s no one to blame for such a fiasco, apart from the device, the entertainment is screwed-up for everyone. So keep the phones shut!

2. Being offended by a joke has become the new trend

We all have seen or heard of at least one comedian who has offended a person, a group, or a certain section of society. Today in the world of the internet and in the name of wokeism, people take everything seriously even when it comes to jokes and comedy. The cancel culture has led our comedians to run their scripts with lawyers so that they do not become the victims of a controversy. We can’t forget the history that was created on the stage of the 2022 Oscars when Will Smith got offended by a joke and went on the stage to slap the famous comedian Chris Rock. Just like that, many incidents can happen where people who take offense can use violence to make a point. Indian comedian Munawar Faruqui was also given many warnings like these because of which he had to cancel more than 10 shows. Some of the Indian stand-up comedians who have been in the headlines because of this reason are Vir Das and Agrima Joshua. Comedians might upset people but to settle things, when was violence ever an option?

3. Roasting someone can ignite a war of words

We see a lot of roasts of different celebrities and personalities every day. While many people take the jokes as a good sport, it sometimes doesn’t sit well with some. While it only gets entertaining to see the comedians and YouTubers roasting your favorites, it sometimes hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons. YouTuber CarryMinati and stand-up comedian Kunal Kamra’s war of roast is well known by people who follow these two Internet sensations. Just like them, there are many examples who take the jokes too seriously. 

4. Comedy with no laughs

Comedians perform all over the world, they perform sponsored shows by different companies and brands for their employees, colleges, students, or even marriages and concerts. The comedians are professionals who stick to a script that is particularly customized based on the audience’s profiles. But as they say, mistakes can be made in every situation and sometimes their content just does not matches the profile which can get a bit catastrophic and worse- not funny. It’s not entertaining when the comedian performs with a script pertaining to the corporate sector at a college festival or vice versa. So it’s always better while running through the script to also go through the audience’s profile. The organizers should research well which comic suits the audience according to the event and also discuss the overall boundaries broadly pertaining to the script and the event. 

5. Mischievous Audience

While the comedy show is meant for laughs and everything funny, we might come across some troublesome people, who might not mean any harm but can come off as rude or prankish. Some people purposely try to laugh or make different noises to disturb the comedian. Some people might unnecessarily engage themselves in conversations that can upset the ones sitting beside them. Though there is no way to stop such behavior, for, in the end, it all comes down to what good are we up to individually.

6. Pre-Show Bar Antics

When the Bar Counter opens its boozy gates just moments before my stand-up comedy performance, chaos descends like a tipsy tornado. The allure of liquid courage seduces the crowd, stealing the spotlight from the artist’s carefully constructed punchlines. It’s a perilous dance between comedy and cocktails, where jokes stumble and slur, battling for attention amidst clinking glasses and raucous laughter. The alcohol, like a mischievous thief, steals the spotlight, turning the audience’s focus away from comedian.

Source: Dr. Jagdish Chaturvedi / Linkedin

From the Artists’ point of view

We are not leaving the one who plays the key role in a comedy show: the artist. While the artists work really hard for their performances. Some mistakes can happen nonetheless, after all, we’re all human. Here are all the errors that can be averted which are made from the comedian’s end.

1. The biggest tragedy: A Bad script

For a comedian, the most important part apart from being funny is to have a good script. Even though the comedian has a great comic personality, but in the long run, it all comes down to creativity and scriptwriting. If you can’t create laughter in the most mundane and relatable situations, it can get a little harder to survive in this growing comedy club. So a good script is a must for a professional comedian.

2. Like Dissing the audience? Congratulations! now they hate you

The audience pays to be at the show, so it’s not really advisable to disrespect them in any way. The damage can be done in seconds if you’re not smart enough to think of your audience as a subject to your vulgar or hurtful jokes. While you think you can simply laugh it off, your audience probably hates you. It’s always better to maintain a healthy pitch to have them as your lifelong fans and partners since it’s really important to be likable in order to make people laugh and be a great comedian!

3. Nothing can beat the blues you get when you forget those lines

This mistake is something that can happen to anyone and it’s only natural. While most of the time the new comedians who have just started their stand-up comedy career, forget their lines, it can happen to the ones who have been in the business for a long time. It’s best to improvise at such times and not take the mistake too hard on oneself since it’s a very human thing and know that practice makes perfect and brings success.

4. Stop trying to stick to a voice that’s not even funny

Many times the comedians stick to a voice to make it sound funnier. But instead of expecting laughter from their audiences, all they get is silence, for it just doesn’t suit them or sound funny. It’s always better to keep it real and only be natural to yourself. It’s always better to try different things even if it takes years, be it one-liners, high low energy, storytelling, or exaggeration, and find your voice.

We have been learning about the art of producing a comedy show over the years with our own share of mistakes and humble learnings. We have seen top-class comedians shaping up their careers while dabbling with scenarios like those mentioned above.

When it comes to booking top-class comedians of India, you can book it via team engage4more’s passionate team. We have working relations with over 500 talented artists of India and assure you best-suited artist suggestions for your event with pacy booking at great prices. Also, enjoy our value adds like complimentary quizzing for your events along with free publicity by our post-event coverage via our social media handles!

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