Behind the Laughs: Story of Stand-Up
Dave Chappelle. George Lopez. Jerry Seinfeld. Jay Leno. Ray Romano. Bill Cosby. Carlos Mencia. Tim Allen. Ellen DeGeneres. What do these hilarious household names have in common? They all kick-started their successful television careers with the help of stand-up comedy.
Before getting their “big break,” many soon-to-be TV and movie stars were at local comedy houses performing side-splitting stand-up gigs.
Stand-up is part art form, part informal theater -- and pure comedy. It can be perceived as a sort of onstage battle. Armed with just a microphone and an arsenal of quick-witted jokes & incredible anecdotes, the stand-up comic has to win over the crowd. And the formula for winning is pretty simple: if they laugh, the material’s good.
Today, stand-up is as popular as ever as new comics continue to push the creative comedic envelope. And judging by the success of the feature film The Original Kings of Comedy, as well as the award-winning cable TV programs on Comedy Central, the future of stand-up comedy is definitely looking bright as well.
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