In the last number of years female comedy and comediennes have come to dominate a noticeable portion of the comedy world. A lot of them came up through the comedy clubs. Roseanne Barr, Chelsea Handler and Sarah Silverman (who actually started on SNL) are examples of women who have branded themselves to be strong, sharp, witty, “don’t mess with me” kind of gals. Much of their humor has a biting edge to it and lends itself well to late night, a market that has grown in popularity. Roseanne very nicely transferred her biting wit to primetime, trading an R-rated routine for a blue collar diva that we loved to watch, just to see what would come out of her mouth next. Ellen took a different approach. (You know you’re A-list when no last names are necessary.) Ellen found her niche tickling our funny bones with her quirky dry witted version of germs on the door of a public bathroom or the absurdity of the high heel. Her delightful fun-loving and off center vantage point of the world makes us all keep tuning into watch her dance and warm the hearts of her audience.
So how do you, the unknown actor/comedienne, break into the daunting world of female comedy? Well, hey, it’s comedy, right? Explore your talents; find out where your own funny bone lies. Take a comedy class. There are lots available. Look at the credits of the teacher and see if they’ve actually worked in the field. Often they have a showcase at a club at the culmination of class. That’s the one for you. Get out there and see how audiences react to you. Write about things you know. The more personal you are with your material, the more avenues you can explore. Chelsea Lately told her story of a DUI to a class of offenders and everyone laughed. That was the beginning of her career as a comedienne! Watch the masters at work and analyze what makes them so good. Learn from the pros. They’ve got it figured out. Take chances. You have to stand out from the crowd to get noticed. Above all, have fun. It is comedy, after all.