The She Makes Me Laugh comedy showcase is a monthly event in New York City. As the name suggests, it focuses on women and non-binary identifying comedians.
The makers of She Makes Me Laugh created a festival that lasted from Oct. 4 to Oct. 6. The festival had over 250 submissions, but only 100 got to perform over the three days. The comedians were mostly from New York City itself, but there were some from around the country. A portion of ticket sales went to The Poussey Washington Fund.
The People’s Improv Theater, or PIT has a small stage perfect for comedy. It was intimate and beautiful in a quirky sort of way.
The host for the evening was Laura Zabolotsky, and her hosting was mediocre at best. While her actual performance was one of the best of the night, her hosting only made the show dip in excitement. She seemed mostly unprepared to host, as her jokes were consistently flat.
Eileen Hanley was the highlight of the performance. She did musical comedy with topics ranging from her long and arduous bike ride every day to the benefits of babysitting. She performed four times in total. Although her comedy was definitely one of the best in the show, she overtook the stage. She was on way longer in comparison to the other performers. The other comedians had about five minutes each to deliver their stories, meanwhile every other performance was Hanley singing a song. I truly believe the other comedians would have had stronger material if given the time to correctly set up their stories.
One of the biggest critiques in regards to a majority of the performances was the way the comedians carried out their material. A lot of the stories themselves either dragged out too long or had too much context that needed to be said. When it comes to delivering jokes, one needs to be quick and to the point. You don’t want to lose your audience too fast before you can deliver the punchline. One of the comedians was telling a story about how they soiled themselves in Barcelona, but it took them almost ten minutes to actually get to the funny part. Another issue a lot of these performers had were the fact that while they were dragging out these stories to the point the audience member thinks something funny is about to happen, but then nothing funny is said. One performer was trying to explain the hilarity of their family’s Thanksgivings, but only ended up finishing on how they got to be in the Macy’s Day Parade and how it was a memorable experience for them. Usually when delivering stories like that, the audience member anticipates some sort of hiliarity to ensue.
On the other hand, some other performers seemed rushed in their performance. More than one comedian tripped over their words trying to say them in the allotted time, and the joke ended up getting lost.
By the end of the performance, I felt like I wanted more. Sure, I got a few laughs from some of the comedians, but, for a comedy show it wasn’t nearly enough. I expected to see a much more experienced group of comedians and was sorely disappointed.