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  1. #1
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Xercies's Avatar
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    I did some Stand Up Last night

    I did my first Stand Up Comedy thing last night, I am one of those people that you or I would never think they would go up on a stage and try to make people laugh, but I wanted to go against my own view of myself and go Hey I can do something if I put my mind to it like I did last year with my film making.

    Anyway here is my story of how it went:

    So I felt confident before getting to the pub and I had it rehearsed but sitting there in the audience knowing my name would come up at some point was very very nerve wracking. I didn't like that.

    Being on stage was a fecking weird experience, to be honest with you it felt like a dream really and I still don't believe it actually happened. You have this bright light and you can't really see anyone except silhouettes. It felt to me, and I don't know why, people were scowling at me it was very horrible.

    I was awkward I felt I could feel myself shaking every time I was on I was like why am I doing this. My mind was blank but actually I got through the material fine, Pro Tip just rehearse a lot!

    The pleasing thing was that there were some jokes I thought I would get this kind of response and it did, there were some jokes I was surprised by the response and that was great when they were laughing. There were some jokes I was like hmm don't know if they are funny but I'll try them and yeah they weren't great.

    I was surprised that I could actually come out with off hand comments and they would be laughed out. Surprising in a bit of a disappointing way is my last joke didn't do well and I thought that could be my best joke. It was the starting ones that were just me that seemed to go down well. Another pro tip they always say about writing what you feel, yeah that is pretty true.

    Though an interesting thing with that last joke was that it felt that the people weren't getting it at first and then I heard this wave of laughter that kind of signaled that the crowd suddenly had gotten it, it was this beautiful moment of silence coming into laughter.

    I did think afterwards "Fucking hell never again" I really couldn't concentrate on the next acts I was kind of in this shock state of having just done it.

    I asked my friend afterwards how he thinks it went. I don't think he would of lied. Surprising me a lot after feeling awkward and nervous and feeling like I was saying the jokes to fast or missing things he said I was actually pretty confident and that he could hear a few people around him laughing.

    This stunned me, I was like really? Thats just completely different to what I felt and yet maybe not since there were laughs. It kind of made me think that yeah you may feel something and may think something but the audience sees something else completely differently then you. It kind of made me think of all the things I said about the jokes actually working. It made me think "Hmm ok maybe I should just do it again and just improve"

    So yeah I now think, actually I did want to do it again, tighten up the jokes that worked. Take out the jokes that didn't and add some more stuff that might be more personal since that seemed to go down well. I still have that fear that I will fear fearful again but you can only get used to that by going up more times.

  2. #2
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Heliocentric's Avatar
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    I always thought there was something funny about you.

  3. #3
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus L_No's Avatar
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    Glad to hear you did well! I don't do comedy, but how you experienced it all is very similar how I experience the musical performances I regularly do with my band. The nervousness before you start, the inability to concentrate on anything else than your performance - still, I enjoy it so much that I want to get back up on stage everytime the gig is over, even though I'll be nervous all over again the next time. Practice and experience definitely help in the long run.
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  4. #4
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Fumarole's Avatar
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    Woo hoo! A friend of mine did group improv for a while, so I know what you did takes some guts. Good on you.
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  5. #5
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    When I was in high school I was once supposed to play some Chopin piece on piano during graduation as a background to speech. I've started learning it like 4-5 days before the event. Seems like while you can memorize 1000-1200 notes in a few days, you can't really rely on your memory during stress without at least a few weeks of practice.
    After 2 or 3 bars I just walked away, hahaha.
    Good times.

  6. #6
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Xercies's Avatar
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    The nervousness before you start, the inability to concentrate on anything else than your performance - still, I enjoy it so much that I want to get back up on stage everytime the gig is over, even though I'll be nervous all over again the next time. Practice and experience definitely help in the long run.
    Yeah after doing it I've realized something about myself. I have this innate desire really to be the centre of attention and like it when people find me good in some way. I feel though I've been socialized in the world to be reserved and not peek out from the crowd because the first thing usually gets you bullied most of the time if your different in school. Its made me think that secondary school damaged me in an irreparable way and its taken me about 10 years to get over it and I'm totally not there all the time.

    I always thought there was something funny about you.
    Funnily enough I said I was going to do stand up to my mum and she just laughed he ass off. I would use it as a joke but unfortunately it would take a lifetime to explain

  7. #7
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Ethelred's Avatar
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    Props Xercies!

    i don't do stand up but I do a lot of presentations where I always factor jokes in and I am absolutely terrible with nerves beforehand. That sounds more David Brent than I am on all honesty!

    Once I am on stage though I usually relax a lot more, but it's practise in front of people that gives more confidence.

    Good of luck for the next one!

  8. #8
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Skalpadda's Avatar
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    Yeah, respect to you. It takes guts to get up in front on a stage, especially when you're doing something personal.

    I've never done any real public speaking, much less comedy, but I definitely recognise that surreal feeling from doing recitals and concerts. Luckily for me mostly playing classical music you can get away with being a bit introverted and quiet (though I hate the side of classical music that takes itself so preposterously seriously. Especially pianists seem prone to dramatic over-acting for some reason. Pianists ruin everything). The small bits of talking I'd do always worried me more than playing, but playing stuff I'd written myself was both the scariest and most gratifying when it went over well.

    But yeah, big props, hope it goes even better next time, and practice will definitely make it easier to enjoy it while it's happening. :)

  9. #9
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Matt_W's Avatar
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    Just wanted to add my name to the chorus of props. Nice job! Really awesome that you had the guts to do that, and I hope you'll give it another try. I also really appreciate that you took the time to write down your thoughts about the experience of it; this kind of thing is both encouragement for me to try new scary things, and a reminder that everyone else doing it is nervous too.

  10. #10
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Xercies's Avatar
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    Thank you all!

    Just as an update I had it recorded and I was listening to it and my friend was right, it really surprised me how different it was to how I experienced it. There was some clapping in the middle and for the life of me I really don't remember clapping on the stage.

    I felt nervous and shaky, and apart from the first joke everything else seemed smoothly delivered from ehat I could hear on the recording. So yeah had a pretty bizzare moment of actually knowing I was better then I felt I was.

  11. #11
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus L_No's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xercies View Post
    I felt nervous and shaky, and apart from the first joke everything else seemed smoothly delivered from ehat I could hear on the recording. So yeah had a pretty bizzare moment of actually knowing I was better then I felt I was.
    You're always more susceptible to your own perceived errors than the crowd is. I've missed critical notes while playing guitar, my entire band has improvised music to cover for technical errors or musical errors, and the audience didn't even hear it.
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  12. #12
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus BillButNotBen's Avatar
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    I am in awe! Good for you.

  13. #13
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    If you have a fun on stage and you're not completely talentless, the audience will not care for a few mistakes at all.

  14. #14
    Lesser Hivemind Node Tevildo's Avatar
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    What a surprising post ! That's great Xercies !! Amazing to read something like this here ! You're right, whatever you need to do on the stage, you should reharse it so much it feels as natural as breathing (because even breathing becomes difficult on stage anyway). Also, it's when you have all your material secured in the back of your head that you can start to focus on the moment and give more attention to the audience's reaction, to your feelings, the time, and play with all that.

    I always wondered if telling jokes was the hardest thing ever to do on a stage. Actors always says it's easier to make an audience cry than laugh.

    From what you write it seems you should give it another try ! For you it might seem even more terrifying now I suppose but those kind of things are like swimming, the water seems always too cold until you're inside.

    Maybe you should invite RPS's people for your next show ! Personnally I would be glad to see somebody from a forum perform on stage. That would make it for all the time I read stuff like "I stay there all day long and criticize people who do things" and the other "me and wikipedia we know everything you need to know about life" you usually get on the internet.
    Last edited by Tevildo; Yesterday at 12:36 PM.

  15. #15
    Secondary Hivemind Nexus Xercies's Avatar
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    Maybe you should invite RPS's people for your next show ! Personnally I would be glad to see somebody from a forum perform on stage. That would make it for all the time I read stuff like "I stay there all day long and criticize people who do things" and the other "me and wikipedia we know everything you need to know about life" you usually get on the internet.
    Hey if you want to that would be cool, be interesting to meet some of you and see what you fept. My standup stuff was quite nerd based so I think you lot would definitely appreciate it.

    It's at The Cavendish Arms in London:

    http://www.thecavendisharmsstockwell.co.uk/comedy

    And I can say when I'm doing my next one which I don't want to leave it to soon. I need to have a look at some jokes and tweak them though.

  16. #16
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    Congrats on giving it a go! The most nerve-wracking time is that bit between deciding to do it and getting your first laugh. I dabbled in it about ten years ago but after a couple of years decided it wasn't for me. I still MC the shows I run but those are fewer and fewer these days.


    I found eventually the on-stage nerves vanish, but the pre-show nerves never did!


    I think one of the reasons people see it as one of the tougher performances is that you're on your own up there. No band, no instrument, no other people in the sketch group - nothing to hide behind, you're totally responsible for everything for the time you're up there.


    Good call on taping it - as you've realised, your perception of stuff on stage becomes skewed. And yes, the bits the audience like are often different to the bits you do. Cutting the jokes you love is a sad necessity!

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