WORKING WITH POSITIVE FRIENDS
One way I stay focused and not bitter is working with people I respect and trying to surround myself with positive energy friends. Some of you who know me know that Conan O'Brien is my all time favorite comedian. He once said "Try and do what you love with people you love. If you can manage that, it's the definition of heaven on Earth." Nothing could be more accurate.
I have been fortunate to work with not only comedians I admire (and used to watch on TV) but also friends who motivate and support me. You only appreciate that more when you don't have that. One time, I worked with a very bitter comedian who clearly was unhappy with the choices he made and the hand he was dealt with his comedy career. I kept my distance to avoid having the negative energy suck me in. I made a promise with myself to never become that guy.
Immediately after that experience, however, I appreciated the great weeks when I worked with positive and talented comedian friends like April Macie, Jim Flannigan and Carmen Lynch and people who made this journey fun. It makes the world of difference and I am thankful for it. Even when things don't go well for me, I try hard not to let it affect me and the people I work with.
The silver lining of the bitter comedian, is that I make better decisions now and catch myself from becoming him, even when things don't go as planned. I am working on some new projects for 2023 and can't wait to bring some friends along for the ride. Follow me on Instagram and youtube, if you don't already! #careerchange #positiveenergy #standup #comedy #formerlawyer
AND THEN THERE ARE GREAT WEEKS
Last week I discussed how a few shows were cancelled last minute and one was cancelled due to lack of sales. It was a rough week for me to say the least and nothing seemed to be going right. Even the shows I did perform on didn't bring me the joy and connections that I normally get from shows.
But everything changed after that. I had a week of amazing shows and locked in some upcoming opportunities that could result in big things for me. Then I did a weekend at a venue I had been trying to break into for a while. Finally, I capped it off by headlining Zanies Comedy Club in Rosemont for the first time. So many friends I have not seen in years came out to support the show and I had the opportunity to pick two of my favorite comedians Bridget McGuire and Maggie DePalo to open the show. What a difference a week can make. Onward to Phoenix, Little Rock, Tampa, Sarasota, Cincinnatti and Indianapolis! Hope to see you at a show. #formerlawyer #careerchange #standup #upsanddown
Not that kind of cancelled but I had a string of four show cancellation lately, all in one week. . Three of them were re-scheduled but one really stung. I had my first cancellation this week due to lack of interest. That hurts. Bad.
I have never had a situation where a venue had to cancel a show for lack of ticket sales. It was definitely an ego bruiser and I had no idea that was a possible outcome.
I do shows all over the country in towns where people dont know me, and somehow, I have a small enough draw in most places where I can make it work, especially with some promotion on my podcast, online and in social media.
For all my shows, I take the same steps to promote shows, some ads placed on social media and a push on my podcast and magically, crowds just appear!
For this show, I did the same thing and thought for sure I would have a good show, especially in a town where I actually knew people and had people asking me when I was coming to that town. No dice.
its a hustle, this game of comedy and sometimes you lose. But you gotta keep at it and try not to get bitter. Hope to see you all at the upcoming shows, especially my show at Zanies in Rosemont on sunday. My first time headlining there. Check out the link for details in the comments and please spread the word. I can’t afford to have a low turnout!
#formerlawyer #standupcomedy #lawyerturnedcomedian #careerchange #hustle
I was just asked this by a friend who showed up to one of my shows when only 1/4 of the showroom was full. He wasn't trying to be rude, he was just worried it would be hard for me to get laughs. To me, if the crowd came out, especially on a weeknight to see me, or comedy in general, they usually need or want to laugh. They made the affirmative decision to get ready, drive to the club, sometimes even having to get a sitter, and bought food and drinks. The show must go on. The show will go on! I put on the best show I can and often times, the smaller crowds are the best mighty crowds.
What I don't do on stage is bitch about the size of the show, or make the crowd uncomfortable about themselves or being one of only 20 people in the audience. They want to have fun. They don't want to be made fun of for coming out on a Wednesday to support comedy. It's not their fault I did not bring another 50 people to a show! I am grateful that people showed up for comedy.
At the show in question, some people thanked me after the show (and bought shirts) and sure as hell, one couple drove 90 minutes to see the show. In hindsight, I should have given them a free shirt. :)
That being said, I hope to have big crowds in DC next week and Rosemont in two weeks. Please spread the word! #standup #formerlawyer #careerchange #laughteristhebestmedicine
Paul Farahvar is a comedian hailing from Chicago, Ill.
Paul Farahvar Comedy