Being a comedian is not simply about telling jokes. If it was there would be more comedians than audiences. A successful or popular comedian achieves that status in the same way most people achieve success, with pure grit, and commitment. Below are five tips on how to be a successful comedian.
Before you can consider a career in comedy, you have to actually be able to tell an original funny joke. Comedy is an art. The skills to perform it are not gifted to everybody. This is the basis of your successful comedy career. You should there determine if you are funny, to begin with. Then, you can move on from there. Every other quality you need to be successful will be supportive of this main one.
Be a performer
When you become a successful and popular comedian, you will perform in front of large crowds. Some of the greats like Kevin Hart and Trevor Noah sell out stadia. This is the kind of success you should aspire to surpass. You should be able to maintain the energy to hold the attention of such mammoth crowds. A good performer uses all the tools on the stage to set the scene for the audience. You might consider taking some acting classes. This will help with anxiety and nervousness.
Read the room
This is a very important aspect of performing especially in comedy. You have to be able to tell if the room is liking your performance. You should be able to create an electric atmosphere. Make sure to tailor your jokes and performance to the audience. Your performance and caliber of jokes in a small dingy comedy club would not be the same as those in, say, Carnegie Hall. This tip will be especially useful when you go on tours.
A good lesson in life when making career decisions is to learn before you earn. Always take the time to learn the ropes. Find out how the industry works. This is where a mentor comes in. A mentor will help you develop goals and strategies to attain them. You have to have a set trajectory for your comedy career. Learn the business side of a successful comedy career. Sure, you will have a manager but you have to manage your own self first.
Most of all, have fun. A critical key to success is to enjoy what you do because then commitment to it comes naturally and effortlessly. Enjoying your own performance as a stand-up comedian is a good way to ensure that the audience also enjoys it. Enjoy yourself even when you are not particularly in the mood to tell jokes. This is generally a good rule to live by in life.
It is not going to be easy. It is going to take a lot of patience to get your career off the ground. If you are lucky, you will only struggle for a few years. All the best.