What is a Comedy Club?

Comedy clubs showcase stand-up comics.
Article Details
  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 20 March 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
    Conjecture Corporation
  • Print this Article
Free Widgets for your Site/Blog
Fluorescent light bulbs use 80% less electricity and last as much as 12 times longer than conventional light bulbs.  more...

April 16 ,  1947 :  The term "Cold War" w  more...

If you need to unwind from a hard week or just want to settle in for a few laughs, then a comedy club is the ideal place to spend an evening. Here are some things about comedy club history and ambiance that you may not know.

Comedy routines and the stage have been with us ever since the days of vaudeville. Often used as the opening or warm-up act for the headlining music troupe or dance act, comedy acts would take their stand-up routines across the country. Sometimes the act would be a single comedian who would rely on sight gags and quick repartee to get the audience primed and ready for the headliners.

At other times, two or more comedians would work together, usually with one person playing the serious role and the other being the wacky part of the team. The format caught on, and soon stand-up comedy teams were as famous as all the other vaudeville acts. After vaudeville died the mixture of comedy and clubs continued to be a popular attraction. In fact, many of the most famous comedy duos of the 20th century built up their fan base by touring the comedy club circuit.


During the 1960s and 1970s, a new facet of the comedy club began to emerge, as more and more clubs held amateur nights. The chance to try out routines in front of a live audience was a boon for those who hoped to make it in the field of stand-up comedy. The audience, in turn, had the chance to discover new talent ahead of anyone else. The chance to hone their craft in a comedy club made it possible for some of the most highly regarded comedians of the late 20th century to eventually come to national prominence.

When it comes to layout, the comedy club will vary in the ambiance that it projects. Some clubs today are like auditoriums, with stadium seating and a full sized stage. You will see bright lights and visual effects all through the shows. Others are smaller and more intimate, with tables and chairs for the customers and a small stage area for the performer. Most offer drinks of some kind, and in some clubs you can get a full meal to enjoy during the show.

The comedy club is alive and well today. Some comedy clubs still host amateur nights, as well as provide entertainment by the current ruling class of comedic geniuses that most of us know by name. Cable TV and the Internet have made it possible for a number of high profile comedy club outlets to also be seen by a much wider audience, making some of them into meccas for the star-struck. However, the nice thing is that you don’t necessarily have to rely on your computer and television to take you into a comedy club. Chances are you live within driving distance of a local comedy club. Why not visit one soon? You may be just in time to see the next big comedian before he or she hits the big time.


Discuss this Article

Post your comments

Post Anonymously


forgot password?