Take my advice... | 20 quotes from the Chortle comedy conference

Take my advice...

20 quotes from the Chortle comedy conference

Alex Petty, Laughing Horse: ‘Comedy looks easy to get into but it is a long slog.’

Pete Grahame, Downstairs at the King’s Head: ‘Just ask yourself if you're hungry enough for this. There's a whole strata for whom this is a hobby. It is a long schlep to paid work.’

Julia Chamberlain, Highlight and So You Think You’re Funny: ‘Don't go for the lowest common denominator. You wouldn't be doing comedy in the first place unless you thought you had something to say.’

James Woroniecki, 99 Club: ‘Courses are useful, but there are some dodgy ones run by failed comedians - avoid them. But Jo Caulfield's Things I’ve Learned As A Comedianblog and Stuart Goldsmith's Comedian's Comedian podcast are useful.’

Alex Petty, ‘Get stage time and also observe what other acts on the bill are doing, don't disappear after your five minutes.’

Julia Chamberlain: ‘Don't go for a reaction, go for a laugh.’

James Woroniecki: ‘If you are London-based you can get into the bad habit of performing only open mic nights to other open mic comics.

Julia Chamberlain: ‘If you're not getting any better, just please stop.’

Ryan Taylor, The Pleasance: ‘Edinburgh is such a good thing to do, it’s the biggest arts festival in the world. It's a great place to meet other comics and performing over 25 nights you just grow and grow and grow.’

Ben Farrell Objective Productions: ‘YouTube’s more important than Edinburgh. It's beamed directly into your office, and you can see what ideas have got a audience if they have hundreds of thousands of views.’

Ryan Taylor: ‘Edinburgh works because there is an audience who wants to see shows - you just have to get them into yours.’

Alison Vernon-Smith, executive producer of BBC radio comedy: ‘A lot of people send us scripts, most of which are absolutely awful - but we do read them all.

Mob Dar, Baby Cow: ‘Write what you want to write about, don't try to write things to order. ‘

Rachel Springett, Channel 4 commisioner: ‘At Channel 4, we don't take unsolicited scripts so align yourself with an indie [an independent production company]. But we do have a Blaps system - that's the online content that can come from anyone.’

Ben Farrell: ‘I get 20 to 30 [unsolicited] scripts in a week and I can't get to them all the time. So sometimes it can take a couple of years to get to a script.’

Mob Dar: ‘All this 360 degree programming bollocks? There's no substitute for a script with great storytelling, characters and dialogue. If a script is not making you laugh or intriguing you within ten pages, we stop.’

Variety act Mat Ricardo on promoting his own shows: ‘You have to wake up at 6am going, “Ticket sales!” If you don't, you're not putting enough into it.

Yianni Agisilaou, on trying to selling himself to club audiences: The idea is not to have 500 people a week just breeze past you after gigs.’

James Mullinger, who markets his own shows: ‘You often go to venues and they say they had an Roadshow comic or a Week Mocker in the other day and they only sold 20 seats. Yes they’re on TV, but what did they do to sell the show?’

Ben Walker, podcast producer: ‘If you’re putting something out, it’s going to be online for ever. Don't be relaxed about, make it as good as you can, great things can come of it.’

Published: 25 Jun 2013

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