Sunday, October 21, 2007



“Comedy Is Acting Out Optimism.” Robin Williams – Actor/Comedian

I went to the Kowloon Restaurant on Route One North, Saugus, Massachusetts for dinner and then upstairs to the "Comedy Connection" Club for some laughs Friday night. The performers were OK - I did laugh but kept thinking to myself how much I wish I could be doing that!! Stand-up is something I did try in the late 80’s early 90’s when I went to Emerson College and just after graduating. Some places I did open mic nights in Boston were Dad’s Dinner (now closed), Nick’s Comedy Stop, Stitches (now closed), and Dick Doherty’s Comedy Vault downstairs at Remington’s. For my last semester at Emerson College I attended the Emerson’s Los Angeles Program and worked as an intern at Entertainment Tonight. I stayed at the Oakwood Apartments where many entertainers also stayed. I along with the other students/friends hung hung out with the now well know actor, Jeremy Priven when he was just beginnin his acting career (I have a pix with him somewhere!). It was there that I joined a comedy support group and would perform my routines in front of other comics starting out then we would hit the dive clubs in LA.

I also took an improv comedy class at the Groundling Theatre in Hollywood, California where many famous comedians began. In fact, my instructor at the time was Comedian/Actress Kathy Griffin. A few constructive feedback comments that Kathy gave me were “DON’T STEAL THE SCENE!” and “DON’T DENY!”. Now to say to someone like me “DON’T STEAL THE SCENE!” is pretty comical in itself!!! But the reason you “DON’T DENY!” is because it cuts the action off and stops the scene from moving forward. If someone says something outrageous then you respond with a “yes I did and”… then add something else on.

In 2006, I took a stand-up comedy class at the Boston Center for Adult Education with for Stand-up Comic/Instructor, Dana Bean I really would like to start getting back out there and do more open mic nights. A dream of mine is to audition for AMERICA’S FUNNIEST MOMS”…

But to be honest it is really my soon-to-be ten-year-old (November 14th) daughter Sabrina who “MAKES ME LAUGH!” which is great for me because I am usually the one who makes everyone else laugh! I love how Sabrina imitates other people’s walks, talks, voices, looks, outfits by using various ways to convey their personalities. She is definitely an entertainer…hmmm I wonder where she gets that from – those of you who know me - already know!

One funny visual that Sabrina made-up one day was taking her long brown hair behind her back then dividing it in half, sticking it out from under each arm. Since her hair is soo long it protrudes out about two inches in the air. She will top this off with a wide smile and jokingly say; “I need to shave under my arm pits”. … “SHE MAKES ME LAUGH!” Another visual is when Sabrina imitates my sister, her Aunty Mary who is a smoker. Mary even smokes while she cooks (An aside - YUK – Sorry to you smokers but I am a non-smoker and the smoke irritates my eyes and my lungs). Sabrina puts her index and pointing fingers together and brings them up to her mouth very slowly – emulating she has a cigarette – then she’ll say “We’re having smoked turkey for dinner” as she pretends to take the cigarette from her mouth and then blows smoke onto the turkey” – hence “Smoked Turkey”. … “SHE MAKES ME LAUGH”!!



Here are some of my suggestions -

Try taking an Improve or Stand-Up Comedy Class (or both) at a local college or local theatre, go to an open mic nite and watch other newbies or even perform a five minute spot, join a comedy troupe, read some books by comedians that give great humor advice - like Judy Carter's The Comedy Bible/The Book, The New Comedy Writing - Step by Step by Gene Perret.

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