Top Twenty Rules in Stand Up Comedy

Stand-up comedy is an art form. Here are the rules of performing as set out by the preposterous participants in comedy.

By Bryan Oliver

  1. When asking for a gig - appear humble. No-one likes confidence. I mean, who the fuck do you think you are?
  1. Do not speak to professional comedians on social media. Only ‘like’ and retweet everything they say.
  1. Appear to like and share the same interest in superheroes, comics, geeky sci-fi stuff and awful music.
  1. Kiss as many promoters, open spots and comedians‘ asses as possible. Nothing makes progression happen more than being a pandering asshole.
  1. Be dreadfully shit. But not that shit that you don’t get talked about for other gigs.
  1. Have a car. You can be the worst but if you have a car you’ll be thrown a bone of five minutes.
  1. Learn to take abuse from promoters with bigger egos than IQs.
  1. Do not expect to make friends in the industry. Comedians are not people. They are bastards with personality disorders.
  1. Do not accept paid work until you’ve been doing gigs for twelve years (at least) - unpaid. Talent is arrogance.
  1. When the gig is over, inform everyone else on the bill they were brilliant and that the crowd were at fault. Drink two beers with them and expect numerous texts of insecurity from them afterwards.
  1. Do not remind them you could punch their faces in. Comedians are not human.
  1. If a comedian has acted like a bit of a moron do not call them on it unless two-hundred people on social media have done it first.
  1. Do not keep yourself to yourself. This is seen as being arrogant.
  1. Do not have talent.
  1. Leave your morals in the house. You won’t need them again.
  1. Sit and listen to the partners of professional comedians tell you how the industry has changed and how the festivals in the 90’s was what comedy really was.
  1. Adore every headliner.
  1. Do not stand up for yourself if a comedian says something about or against you.
  1. Organize a charity gig - nothing says “I can’t get any bookings” more than putting your own charity night on.
  1. Don’t be a comedian. Get a real job. Take the Star Wars and Superman pyjamas off and grow up.



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