One of the biggest problems new comedians face is producing stand-up comedy material that will actually generate noteworthy laughs when they deliver it on stage.
So let’s talk about just a few of the issues that hold new comedians back.
Dependency upon “writing” stand-up comedy material in a literary sense.
Many new comedians are under the impression that the real “key” to getting big laughs on stage is directly related to their “writing” ability.
The problem with that approach is that audiences don’t read stand-up comedy material.
In other words…
Stand-up comedy audiences could care less how well stand-up comedy material “reads” from a piece of paper.
Lack of knowledge about what a punchline that works really is.
If you subscribe to the “traditional” methods usually taught in stand-up comedy books and courses, then you probably assume that punchlines are somehow magically produced from “writing” them out of thin air.
The problem with this approach is:
While some punchlines will “read” funny by their very nature, most stand-up punchlines simply won’t “read” funny from a piece of paper because specific and important delivery elements are missing from working with mere words on paper.
Hint: Most of your ability to generate laughs on stage or off stage does NOT revolve around the literal words you use when you talk.
If you don’t know what a punchline is relative to you and your unique sense of humor, you will struggle to produce stand-up comedy material that actually works.
New comedians don’t know how to structure a stand-up comedy routine for maximum laughter impact.
There are only 60 seconds in a minute. When a comedian is on stage, they are either talking or the audience is responding with laughter (or not).
In order to deliver a noteworthy stand-up comedy routine, comedians must generate 4-6+ laughs each performing minute.
Comedians who can only generate 1-2 laughs per minute are bombing – which is what happens when a comedian doesn’t know how to effectively structure their stand-up comedy material.
Here’s the bottom line:
Being able to develop and deliver a high level stand-up comedy routine is not about just one thing (ie: writing).
It’s about a combination of factors that work in harmony to generate the laughs a comedian wants on stage.
With that said, here are some questions you need to be able to answer for yourself if you want to develop and deliver a stand-up comedy act that will actually generate big laughs:
- Do you know what makes you funny off stage so you can use that comedy talent on stage?
- Do you know what a punchline really is relative to you, your sense humor and already developed comedy talent?
- Do you know how to structure your stand-up comedy material to get at least 4 laughs every performing minute?
If you can’t answer these basic questions with confidence, I can pretty much guarantee that you will struggle to produce stand-up comedy material that will work for you in any reasonable amount of time.