Hello enjoyers of comedy. Hello, lovers of a laugh. Hello Comedians.
I just wanted to put myself out there a little bit today and kind of beg you guys to see things a certain way, which, maybe you already do. Let’s see.
We can all agree that Berlin has a tremendous amount of potential in terms of harnessing a great English language comedy scene.
I have without a doubt, many times, seen groups of people enjoying comedy in this city.
But it’s never a given. Nothing stays the same, and unless you would like comedy to be the next Dub Step, or Jungle music, it takes vigilance, and effort to maintain the structure.
This could all be gone in a flash. Like Louie says, we’re one or two horrible gigs away from no one giving a shit about us.
We need to be getting better. We need to do better. We need to build.
I personally think the best way to build our very small and fragile comedy scene, would be to bring in better, more experienced comedians, to perform for us, giving us an insight into what works and what doesn’t work.
While many might think my greatest accomplishment and greatest achievement in comedy was playing the Laugh Factory in La, I would say that playing the Laugh Factory didn’t give me half the wisdom that sitting in the back of the Laugh Factory and watching Chris D’elia did.
Watching Bobby Lee. Watching T J Miller.
(I would also say I have zero great accomplishments in comedy.)
There’s something about live comedy. We need people in Berlin to understand that.
Fuck Youtube. LIVE.
Fuck perfection. LIVE.
Fuck boring, lifeless, monotony. LIVE.
It can happen. But we, the comedians, have to first understand what that even means.
We need to see whats happening when stand up succeeds. You can’t see that on a video. It’s something that Berlin is lacking, and it makes me insanely sad.
We need to see more comedians.
Bill Burr came to Europe.
Louie came to Europe.
And so on.
It takes work. It takes effort from US.
This Friday, although she’s not as famous as some people, Josie Long is coming to Berlin.
She is however, more famous, and established (that’s the word I should actually use here) than any of us. This is a great opportunity for the Berlin community to plant the seed of bringing in more established comedians, and offering something bigger than we ourselves can offer.
This is something new for people.
So, here’s what we all need to do.
First of all. We all need to be here. We need this show to be packed, but not only packed. Packed with people who are NOT assholes. NOT a group of Spanish people who have never seen a stand up show in their lives. NOT a group of asshole Australians, who bored, decided to come before they get tore up at a techno club.
We need this place full of people who appreciate comedy and wanna see comedy and know about comedy and WANT COMEDY, and all that.
We need it to be full of people like us, because that’s how this scene used to be.
THAT’S what made SIN BAR so special. US.
Please come see Josie Long, please bring some cool people, please push this show, and please make this show great, so we can have John Kerns here.
I got an email about him wanting to come to Berlin, but come on, how can we invite John Kerns, if no one will come out to the shows?
Do it for comedy in Berlin.
I love you all, and honor your very difficult path. Believe it or not.
MF David Deery.
3 thoughts on “A letter to comedians and comedy fans in Berlin.”
Yeah, while you “non-asshole” people go to Josie Long. We asshole people are going to have a blast with Russel Brand together with our australian and spanish friends before we go to the club. After this gig all future Berlin comedy will be in spanish or turkish. Get used to it.
I don’t think that I love you, actually I don’t know you at all.
So let me get this straight, Thorsten. You can’t even spell Russell Brand’s name correctly, yet I’m supposed to care that you never heard of me? WAY TO VALIDATE MY POINT. ZING.
It is very true, inspired and eloquent what you have written. Now I live in the Dam AND Berlin but the latter has been my spiritual home for 30 years and my German is excellent, even Berlinerisch ( my mates here are nearly all born and bred) so I know how trends, power structures and so on develop in this amazing city. From what I have seen from the ( very good) English scene you talk of is that it runs the danger of becoming a hierachy, an in-crowd and that is a death sentence for growth. On one site there was talk of the criteria for getting gigs..all well and good but then there was talk of ´are you a nice person…do you support the comedy scene´. OK: you can judge someone´s comic potential but who has the right to determine whether someone is a nice person or not??: if someone wise and talented outside the scene points out the failings are they then subject to the age old tactic of paranoid insecure cliques: character assasination? Maybe thats the way it works in LA or London but if people try this approach in egalitarian Berlin – where peple have come to escape this kind of judgemental persecution then the scene will be eaten alive. They will find themselves isolated and ostracized themselves and..well karma. I say this to help and guide not to insult or put it down. On the night of the Josie Long gig YOK was at SO 36, I was at Art Gerecht and there were other shows too. The night before I played at a packed out Knuckle Up cabaret event at the amazing Villa Curiosum. None of these events were highlighted on the Comedy scene sites and it is a damn shame and actually self defeating. Why are they not supporting and promoting these events as well with all their talk of ´supporting comedy´. I just did 15 shows- all pretty much busy and 14 without the framework of the established scene: you can do that here as a pro entertainer. Easy. THere are at least another 6 or 10 nights that should be added to the circuit guide as well. OK mixed language or Klein Kunst but vital outlets too, no less than the clubs in the English scene. This will bring fresh blood to the scene WITHIN Berlin AND give comics the chance to play more exotic and challenging venues. Makes sense. I have to stir things up and be a maverick- that is my thing and sometimes it seems dodgy but I am very dedicated to comedy and entertainmen t in general und ein janz jutes Ei. Greetings and keep up the good work.