Just for laughs
> Contrary to popular belief, jokes are more than a moment of brilliance
Have you had gigs where your audience didn’t understand or laugh at your jokes? It has happened before. I had a show where there were only five people, with three of them being my friends so they knew my joke, but the rest didn’t. Hence, I was doing 15 minutes of materials to no laughter – it was completely silent. That’s just part and parcel of being a comedian, though.
But how do you salvage these situations? You don’t because there’s nothing to salvage. When your audience doesn’t laugh, you still need to power through the show as if nothing happened. At some point in the career of a stand-up comedian, you have to learn not to care too much and to adapt to situations. If a joke doesn’t work out, then maybe it’s something that the audience doesn’t want to hear so you just move on.
A lot of offensive remarks are now being disguised as jokes. Where do you think we should draw the line between the two? To me, stand-up comedy is a platform that is different from anything else. Stand-up comedy is a sanctuary. As an audience, you need to know that all kinds of jokes will be made in standup comedy. Hence, if you made a conscious decision to go to such shows and yet get offended, the onus is on you. Follow his Twitter jokes at: Fictional alter ego: Recommended comedies: Star sign: Will sing along to: What about offensive ‘jokes’ made outside the context of standup comedy? I think stand-up comedy is the platform where you can talk about anything you want, as long as it’s funny. As I have mentioned, the crowd is only entitled to withhold their laughter. It is, however, a different scenario if it’s done on social media or face-to-face. People need to remember that although there’s freedom of speech, the listener maintains the right to feel offended.
Haikal Idris is a self-taught stand-up comedian. He looks up to Anthony Jeselnik, Dave Attell and Michael Kosta.