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Pro-Am Emcee Thoughts

I’m emcee tonight at the Pro-Am at the Halifax Yuk Yuks, and we have a few new comics we don’t normally have, which is great, it’s always awesome to see comedians get up for the first time to do comedy and even better to see them do well, and that was what we saw tonight.

For my part I did some crowd work off the top and then went into some of my routine, as I’m on a limited time schedule I kept it short and just did a few songs and then brought up the rest of the acts. I didn’t record it because it’s hard to remember to record at a Pro-am when you’re the Emcee, I’m popping up between the acts who have only 5 to 7 minutes each, so I don’t have a lot of time off stage, I’m even timing them so I know when to light the acts on stage and let them know when their time’s up.

Some places have different ways to let you know when your time is up, sometimes they have a small flashlight they’ll shine at you, sometimes they use the light on their smartphones and wave their hand in front of the light to bring attention to you, in most professional clubs they have a red light bulb on the wall and that is lit once to let you know your time is up, and if you don’t see it and keep going the light is flashed on and off, and if you still don’t see it the light is turned on and left on until you either acknowledge it, or if you’re either not paying attention or you’re just hogging the stage because you’re being a huge ass then at the Halifax club they’ll play the “you’ve got to leave the stage” Oscars music to let you know you’ve gone way over.

For the most part tonight, one or two went a wee bit over but not too much. The worst I saw was several years ago there was a guy who went onstage and did a joke that didn’t get a laugh, and he refused to leave until the audience laughed, they wouldn’t laugh and he wouldn’t leave, so for 20 minutes there was a stalemate and he stood on stage until the manager escorted him not only off the stage but also out of the club. He was banned for 3 months, but to be honest I don’t think he ever came back. I always tell the new comics, no matter how badly you think things are going to go, if you can manage not to do that, you’ll be fine.

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