SEASON 23 - 2016
September 6, 2016 – October 25, 2016.
Every Tuesday from 8:15pm – 10:15pm.
Towne Street Theatre, L.A.’s premiere African-American theatre company, in partnership with Comedian, writer, actor, and college professor Ken Cosby present Stand-up Stylez: Phase #1.
This class is designed for beginning stand-up comics, with a focus on the individual performer. This 8 week course will take you from having no material to performing a tight 5 to 6 minute set in front of a live audience.
The structure of this class merges the writer with the performance aspects of stand up. Knowing joke structure and terminology will only take you so far. Stand-up comedy is a performance art. It’s more than just writing jokes and standing in front of a group of strangers praying they’ll laugh at what comes out of your mouth.
Stand-up Stylez: Phase #1 creates a balance between the written word and the performer by creating the comedy toolset needed to develop your own stand-up routines. These 8 classes are geared towards having each student perform a 5 minute stand-up set in front of a live audience.
Each week, the students will have required written assignments as well as in class writing and performance assignments that are geared towards opening up your individual sense of humor and help guide your performances to making your point of view as clear as possible to an audience.
The first 4 weeks are dedicated to creating material. The second 4 weeks are dedicated to adjusting and performing that material. Get the full course details below.
If you’re ready to take that first step into the world of stand-up comedy, Stand-Up Stylez: Phase #1 is the perfect place for you to begin.
So, if you’re still interested, let’s enter into PHASE #1.
Stella Adler Theatre 6773 Hollywood Blvd. Hollywood, CA 90028
September 6, 2016 – October 25, 2016. Every Tuesday from 8:15pm – 10:15pm.
CLASS ONE: What is stand-up comedy? What are you afraid of? Now, that we’ve done that, let’s get over it. This first class is designed to dispel the myths of what stand-up comedy is. We will listen to stand-up comedy material, learn how to analyze the work to the best of your ability and learn the terminology of stand up. By the end of the class, each student will get up in front of the class and relay a story. It doesn’t have to be funny. It just has to be you. We’ll get to how to make that funny soon enough.
Assignment for next week: Listen or watch a stand up comedian you like and start breaking down why you feel their material works. How does it affect you and why. Also, bring in a short story that you can present to the class, no longer than 3 minutes. (For this one pick a story that you feel is funny.)
CLASS TWO: The Joke, The Storyteller, and other Weird and Freaky stuff. The key to making any form of storytelling work is to learn how to think visually. After the discussion of the previous assignments, we start training the mind to think in visual terms. We’ll go over the differences between joke tellers, story tellers, and dive into alternative comedy. In the later part of this class, we’ll dive into your short stories, them for the funny, and help you discover what type of comedy works best with your personality.
Assignment for next week: HEADLINES - You will peruse the internet or newspaper (what the hell is a newspaper?) and pick three headlines. DON’T READ THE ARTICLE! TRUST ME, I’LL KNOW IF YOU DO. You’ll write three jokes based on your personal history that relate to the headlines you picked.
CLASS THREE: The Concept, the ‘Bit’, and how to build your routine. In this class we start to build your routine based upon the jokes you have written. We will go over more detailed specifics of how to extend your ideas, how to use callbacks, non-sequiturs, act outs, illusions, and metaphors.
Assignment for next week: Take the jokes you’ve written or, if those didn’t work as well as they should for you, write new ones and start extending the written words into longer ideas.
CLASS FOUR: Confidence. Stage Presence, and To Tell The Truth or... not. This class is about combining the written word with the physical body. We focus on the particulars of stage presence, projecting confidence, and how to fake the truth so to speak. We will go over how to use the microphone effectively as well as how to engage the crowd from the stage.
Assignment for next week: Write out your three minute set and be ready to perform in with paper in hand.
CLASS FIVE: You will perform your three minute stand-up routines in class. Notes will be given from me as well as fellow students with the focus of making your routines work better.
Assignment for next week: Rework your three minute bits to be performed next week off book.
CLASS SIX: You will perform your rehearsed three minute bits and look for ways to improve them with a concentration on performance techniques as well as paying attention to vocal specifics and joke and or story wording.
Assignment for next week: Some of you will continue to work on your three minute set. Others will extend on your three minute sets and move towards five minute sets.
CLASS SEVEN: This class is about fine tuning your work and looking for gold in your words that you might not have been apparent to you at this time. Students who are continuing to work on your three minute routines need to be completely off book by this time. Students moving towards five minute routines need only to address your paper for the new material.
Assignment for next week: Have your final set ready to performance.
CLASS EIGHT: This is it. The final time you get to practice your work before performing it live in front of and audience of your friends and enemies next week on stage at Stella. Everyone needs to be as polished as possible. In this class I will give you some of my personal tips for dealing with stage fright, how to handle hecklers effectively, and how you can get back on track if you jump he sequence of your jokes in your set.
THIS IS THE FINAL CLASS. THE NEXT TIME WE MEET WILL BE SHOWTIME!
You will perform your stand-up routines at Stella Adler as part of a two hour show, hosted by me and inter mixed with some of my favorite local comics.
PHASE #1 COMPLETE