National Funny Award
5 top tips for young people getting into comedy
We recently caught up with our friends at The UK Kids’ Comedy Festival who have put together their top five top tips to help you get started in comedy …
Check out their tips below, to help you prepare your comedic submissions for our new national funny award!
1. Find out what makes you laugh!
Watch, read and listen to lots of comedy, this will expand your knowledge of styles but it’ll also help you identify what makes YOU laugh. Watch some clips online or TV (ask parents, friends and family for their recommendations) and when you can, come and visit festivals like The UK Kids’ Comedy Festival for more inspiration.
2. Figure out your style.
Once you’ve watched, read and listened to a variety of comedy you will know what makes you laugh and if it makes you laugh it will make other people laugh, and if you’re laughing inside at your own jokes you’re bound to have more fun! There are loads of styles to choose from, so do some research and have a go! Are you born to perform sketch comedy? Can you think on your feet like an improv star? Or you might want to adopt a character/costume and perform as if you are somebody else. Are you good with words, one liners or puns might be for you? (Check out The UK Pun Championships for some ideas or watch this great pun video by Bec Hill)
3. You don’t need to try too hard.
You are funny, we promise! Think of how many times you’ve smiled or giggled today. We make each other laugh every day with stories of what we did at (home) school or what we had for dinner or our annoying siblings. Be sure to write about what you know. You don’t need to make topics or jokes too complicated, sometimes less is more.
4. Be confident and believe in yourself.
It’s one of the hardest parts about writing or performing comedy, lots of professional comedians still get very nervous before gigs too. Sometimes we need to scare ourselves to see our full potential, so be brave! When you’re performing make sure you take a deep breath before you start and try not to talk too fast. It’s common to speed up when we want to get something over and done with but practice, so you know what you’re saying and take your time, you’ll enjoy the experience more!
5. Ask for feedback, listen and edit.
All comedians get feedback whether that’s from family and friends when they’re first starting out or in ‘Work in Progress’ or ‘Preview’ shows. It’s part of the process, something that you find really funny might be too much of an “in joke” for a wider audience or just not as funny as you thought. Being able to edit your work is really important and will improve your comedy no end. Try out your jokes, sketches or writing to family and friends, or you could film it and then watch it back. This will also help decipher some important information about your audience; what age ranges find you funny? Is your comedy specific for your geographical area? To reach the most amount of people you should try and be broad BUT if you’d rather be a bit more specific to one particular group, go ahead.
Overall make sure you have fun! Whether it’s written word or a visual performance - comedy is a wonderful art form which makes audiences fall into an uncontrollable frenzy of smiling and laughing and who doesn’t want to make people laugh!
Discover more about The UK Kids’ Comedy Festival here and enter your submissions for the Louise Rennison National Funny Award 2020 here.