Intense Comedy (Part 1)

Sorru mountains, you're not funny; you'll have to settle for being beautiful instead.

Sorry mountains, you’re not funny; you’ll have to settle for being beautiful instead.

I like to think that I’m just smart enough to know that comedy is Hard Work.

It’s easy to dismiss comedy as being something light or frivolous because light and frivolous things are always super easy, right? I mean, pfft Mozart wrote light and frivolous music and he could do that when he was six. And the whole point of Improv comedy is that it can be made up on the spot and if it can be made up on the spot then how hard could it be, right?

Turns out that it is still Hard Work.

In an effort to not be intimidated by hard work, I signed up for a two day Intensive Comedy Workshop taught by Steve Kaplan this weekend. It was gloomy and rainy when I arrived for the course this morning and it was already sunset by the time I walked out again at the end of the day and except for a lunch break I spent the entire rest of the time sitting in a classroom learning the basics of comedy. It was time well spent. If you’re going to dedicate a weekend to an intensive class then there are worse choices than watching clips of comedies and figuring out what makes them work.

The reason I signed up for the class is because the next film project that I am hoping to direct is going to be a comedy and that scares me shitless. Why? Because if it’s not funny then everyone is going to know it and know it right away. Because even though I think I have a pretty good sense of humor I don’t consider myself a funny person. And because there are so many ways to go wrong along the way. Comedy, as it turns out, happens when a character with no skills is faced with an insurmountable task and yet still doesn’t give up hope. And if that doesn’t describe my predicament then nothing ever will.

They say that art imitates life and that comedy in particular reveals the truth about life, but I admit that I didn’t expect it to reveal quite that much truth about my life so… well, literally.

I mean, you would think that for someone who has just discovered that their life is following the rules of comedy that there would be a lot more laughs along the way. 

~ by Gwydhar Gebien on January 26, 2013.

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