Show Tips: Comedy & Fundraisers (Part 1 of 2)

talent network show tips
By David Sedelmeier
Owner/Operator of talent network, inc.
Offering 30 years of insight and knowledge
Planning a Fundraiser? Let talent network help! One great way to raise money for a good cause is with comedy and in Part 1 (of 2) of this new Show Tips Q&A with talent network owner David Sedelmeier, we discuss how combining comedy shows and fundraisers can be a great advantage for your organization. Read on to find out more and, as always, let us know what you think!

When it comes to a fundraiser, why comedy?

There are a lot of things to do as a fundraiser, and we’ve done them all. The reason we like comedy is because if you deliver a good quality comedy show, it’s something that you can set up on a quarterly, semi-quarterly or annual basis in which people are intrigued to come back . Comedy is extremely popular; it breaks all the boundaries. Everybody loves to laugh. We’ve found that a good venue and a good comedian are what will bring people to your event.

And how will the comedy night generate revenue?

There are ways to creatively raise some money while guests are there, but the revenue is mainly through the door and ticket charge to get into the event. Sometimes, having a high-profile comedian can be a real drawing card. And the other aspect is to just sell the concept of a comedy night. The big thing is to make sure it’s a good comedian, and that’s where our job comes in. We go out and see each comedian that we book. We know the essence of their routines. And we want to make sure they’re the type of comedian suited for the audience.

Aside from the choice of comedian and venue – what are other aspects of making the night successful?

This is a question we take a lot of time to try and explain to our clients. Comedy is unique in that the entertainer’s goal is to connect with and please the audience. For it to be successful, there are a couple different factors. One of them is the setting of the room.

And why is the setting of the room so important?

Some of these private affairs will have a DJ and a band, and the comedian is going on after dinner. So he’s up on stage, and there’s this big dance floor and the first audience member is 30 or 40 feet away. All the houselights are up and the sound system is in-house in-ceiling speakers, and that’s all a recipe for disaster – I don’t care how good the comedian is, he needs to be close to the audience to connect.

What is the ultimate atmosphere/setting for a comedy room?

Comedy is about intimacy. It’s about a performer being very close to you, telling jokes and stories, and you have to feel comfortable. You need a good quality sound system, so everyone can hear what the comedian is saying, and the audience needs to be as close to the stage and sitting at as small of tables as humanly possible. That can be a challenge at venues where they have 8 and 10 tops, but if you can do the 4 tops or the 6 tops, it helps with people’s table talk, so they’re not talking amongst themselves as much…

Once you have the room set, how can you gain the audience’s attention and keep it? Stay tuned for next Show Tips when we’ll discuss that and more…

Utilizing our 30 years in the industry, covering shows and events across the world, “Show Tips” is our way of sharing what we’ve learned – and continue to learn – with every event we do. We divulge our behind-the-scenes experiences of working and producing live shows – so you know how to create the best show possible. Let us be your sounding board for your next event! Have questions? Concerns? We are always on-hand – just call and/or email and let us know how we can help. You can also read more about the artists and events in our area on talent network news.

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