Comedy Outliers: Would You Like Be On My Show?

CO24finalToday we feature another guest post from Comedy Outliers. They offer great advice to comedians, or performers in general, on how to survive and thrive in today’s competitive artistic climate.

The Comedy Outliers have their annual holiday show coming up this Saturday, January 18th at Lilly O’Brien‘s in New York City. Their shows are free but we highly recommend you pick up tickets so you don’t show up to a full house.

If you’re in New York or headed that way, be sure to check out their show. It’s rare to see comedy of this calibre without a cover charge or drink minimum. That said, if you want them to continue bringing these great shows to the Big Apple, we highly encourage you to support their efforts by hitting the “Donate” button on their website.

“Yes, I’m available! Let’s do it!”

Those are words that a producer loves to hear when they are trying to book acts for their shows. Reaching out to talent to perform on your show can be quite intimidating and it is often accompanied with rejection or delayed responses that may not come until a week AFTER your event happened. Nonetheless, when you get the act that you feel will be a great fit for your show it is extremely rewarding.

There have been times when we reached out to a comedian about performing on our show only to have them respond that they were unavailable. Did we leave it at that? Of course not! We politely follow-up every month or so with the next date and to inquire about their availability to perform on our show. Sometimes this back and forth goes on for months and in some cases it has taken almost a year to book specific comics (cough) Hannibal Burress (cough)!

Remember when you are trying to book talent that you need to be professional, polite and understanding of their schedules. Creative people, especially comics are impulsive and at times unpredictable which causes challenges when booking them. There have been times when despite our efforts a comic will bail last minute because of a random paying gig that came up…not going to knock that because everyone’s gotta eat! Other times they double-booked themselves (step your Google calendar game up!) However, we never take these cancellations personally but we do try to build line-ups where the comics compliment each other so it may be quite some time before we reach out to that particular comic again if we find that they aren’t the best fit for next month’s show.

Booking a show that will have numerous acts can be stressful and overwhelming at times but this is what we deal with to create the best show possible right? When you get the talent you’re looking for, don’t forget to make sure they enjoy themselves and have a memorable experience so that they can pass the word and hopefully make it easier for you to book other talent through positive word of mouth!

Comedy >

Bay Area: Scary Cow Film Festival at the Castro Theater Tomorrow!

Tomorrow, is the Scary Cow Film Festival in San Francisco. What is a Scary Cow Film Festival you ask? Well, it’s not a festival dedicated to horror films with bovine killers, although that does sound interesting. No, Scary Cow is a film co-op out of the Bay Area that helps aspiring film-makers produce their films. The members run Scary Cow and all revenue that Scary Cow receives goes back to the members in the form of screenings, budgets, classes and more. Since 2007, they’ve made over 150 films and have given out over $130,000 to their members.

Scary Cow has no restrictions on what kinds of films can be made, so a film-maker could, in theory, make a cow-slasher flick if he or she wanted. The film-makers own all the rights to their film, so if by some odd chance their low-budget, indie film takes off and becomes the next Blair Witch Project, then they keep all the profits. But even if their film goes nowhere, Scary Cow offers a valuable service by allowing aspiring film-makers to actually get out there and make it happen; to actually learn by doing. It’s a great way for aspiring film-makers to hone their craft and build their resumes while working and networking with other Bay Area film-makers.
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Film >

Featured Non-Profit: The Ladybug Project

Fresh out of school, with a dream to change the world, biologist Kim Reuter found herself on a plane to Equatorial Guinea; a country, according to Lonely Planet, “that is usually relegated to live under the staple in map books.”  After a brief three months as a field biologist studying monkeys in the rainforest, she realized her mission there was not complete.

She spent the last two weeks of her time in Equatorial Guinea in a small mountain town call Moka where she was welcomed into the local inhabitants homes and lives. “Every time I saw injustice or poverty, I also saw hope. I heard that the country’s high GDP is causing many aid organizations to re-allocate their funding elsewhere, despite the clear need for any and all help. It inspired me to get active. I started to realize that I was so incredibly fortunate; I have never, ever had to worry about health care, water, or education. So I decided that I would try to help others worry less as well.”
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Good Causes >

Bay Area: A Conversation with the Author of “Go the F*** to Sleep”

As a new parent, I’m learning the hard way about child-induced sleep deprivation. Let’s just say coffee has become my new best friend. One book that caught me and my wife’s attention was introduced to us via  Facebook links from friends of ours that thought we might be able to relate. The book was entitled “Go the F*** to Sleep” and was written by Adam Mansbach and illustrated by Ricardo Cortés. As punk rock parents, my wife and I appreciated this no-nonsense approach to parenting and related to the frustrations every parent faces when trying to get a little shut-eye.

According to Wikipedia, Mansbach’s two year old daughter Vivien took up to two hours to go to sleep. Exasperated, Mansbach posted on Facebook “Look out for my forthcoming children’s book, “Go the F*** to Sleep.” His post received enthusiastic response from his friends and this response inspired Mansbach to actually write the book. Advance pdfs of the book began to be distributed via e-mail and the book became a viral sensation even before it’s scheduled release of October 2011, which is this month. The book was #1 on Amazon’s best-selling list by May of 2011 and so the publishers decided to push the release date up to June of 2011 with an increased printing of 150,000 copies. The film rights have even already been optioned by Fox 2000 and all of this is due to it’s popularity on social media sites like Facebook. A true testament to the power of social media.
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Arts >

Picasso’s Birthday Party & Cancer Benefit at The Pit in NYC

Tomorrow, October 25th, is Pablo Picasso‘s 130th birthday. As most of you surely know, Picasso was a Spanish painter who co-founded the Cubist movement in the early part of the 20th Century. His full name was Pablo Diego José Francisco de Paula Juan Nepomuceno María de los Remedios Cipriano de la Santísima Trinidad Ruiz y Picasso, a name that pays homage to various saints and relatives and is quite challenging to say in one breath.

From an early age he had an interest in drawing. His father, Don José Ruiz y Blasco, was a painter who specialized in painting naturalistic portraits of birds and other game who felt that formal artistic training was important. So, from the age of seven, Pablo’s father trained him in figure drawing and oil painting. One popular story says that Picasso’s father discovered his son painting over his unfinished sketch of a pigeon at the age of thirteen and declared that his son had already surpassed him as an artist, whereupon he vowed to give up painting forever. When he was 16, his father enrolled him in the Royal Academy of San Fernando, Spain’s foremost art academy, but young Picasso disliked formal training and quit attending classes.
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Comedy >

2011 Friars Club Comedy Film Festival

I’m sure most fans of comedy are familiar with the Friar’s Club in New York. If you’re not, The Friar’s Club is a private club, established in 1904 and famous for their scathing celebrity roasts. The Friar’s Club started when representatives of Broadway theatres organized the Press Agents’ Association with the New York publicists that they were working with to exchange lists of people who were fraudulently getting complimentary passes to shows. Not long after this, they began to hold tribute dinners for theatrical celebrities. These would eventually turn into the celebrity roasts that you see today.

This weekend The Friar’s Club is hosting “four days of films, networking, parties, and laughter” and is offering  film-makers the opportunity to introduce their work to leading executives, comedians, and industry professionals.You can see the whole schedule here.

They got some great films on the roster and here’s a sneak peak at a few of them:

The Other F Word:
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Film >

BPT’s Featured Producer: The Business of Books

We sat down with Jen and Kerry at Miro Tea in Ballard, Washington to talk about the success of their book publishing workshop series. In this video, Jen and Kerry share some of their best event promotions tips.

To view Jen and Kerry’s workshops, visit: www.BizofBooks.com

Their Proposal Series starts tomorrow, October 12 and is highly recommended for any writer that’s looking to get published. Tickets are available here.

The whole story about Jen and Kerry’s success will come out in our next enewsletter. Make sure you’re on the subscription list! http://www.brownpapertickets.com/news/Event_Success_Subscribe.html

Arts >

Two Legendary Punk Bands Hit the West Coast!

Many of us here at Brown Paper Tickets came up in the punk rock scene. The sense of community and DIY aspects of the punk scene still ring true in many of our company policies and you can often wander by any given desk here in our offices and hear punk music coming out of the computer speakers, see punk fliers on office walls and of course, catch many of our employees sporting a t-shirt of their favorite punk band.

So, while I was perusing upcoming events that we are ticketing, I was thrilled to see that we’re ticketing shows by two punk rock legends, UK street-punk band The Business and Northwest hardcore legends Poison Idea.
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Music >

San Francisco: Get Ready for Halloween with Shocktoberfest 12!

October is upon us and thus begins the season of all things dark, creepy and sinister. Over the next month, I’ll be featuring events that set the mood for Halloween and the first event that caught my eye was Shocktoberfest in San Francisco.

This trio of noir-horror plays is celebrating its 12th year and is a collaboration between San Fransisco’s renowned Thrillpeddlers and author Eddie Muller, who wrote the evening’s plays. The Thrillpeddlers have been around for nearly two decades and specialize in authentic Grand Guignol horror productions. The Theatre Du Grand Guignol was located in the Pigalle neighborhood of Paris and was open from 1897 to 1962. It specialized in horror shows and today the term Grand Guignol is used to describe a wide range of graphic horror entertainment, ranging from Elizabethan theater to modern splatter films.
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Arts >

Radio/New Media Doer Sabrina: Clever Crafty Crafts I saw at Maker Faire New York

In September I had a chance to get to know people in the Maker Movement by attending Maker Faire New York. I had a blast and will be writing more about why I, as the Radio Doer went along with our Maker Doer Tamara Clammer and co-worker Kelly Allen. (hint: it has to do with building more relationships between Community Media and Makers/Hackers). I met many creative tech people and engineers – but the work of the crafters also caught my eye. I don’t knit, but I love fabric arts and independently made jewelry, so a few things caught my eye. The Brown Paper Tickets booth at was right next to a main thoroughfare – so I saw some incredible crafty crafts and wear-able art.

Some highlights:

Food Scarf!
I loved this scarf. Maybe you’ve seen art like this just hanging around people’s necks, but I haven’t. The whimsy of it just made me happy. I didn’t get her name, but she said she just graduated from school where she focused on animation. She calls her stuff Scarf It Down Knit Delicacies. Check out her Etsey Store!
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Radio >