In Street photography, you approach strangers and ask to take their portrait. "why?" Be prepared to answer, to say something, possibly nice, even if you do not know exactly at the moment or just have a 'gut feeling' that you 'must' take this one with you home.
Sometimes, invent a nicer answer that what the real reason is, as I can not say 'you have a funny face' and expect they let me take it.
The biggest problem is not taking a candid street scene. This two men were too preoccupied to dispute each other to notice me taking a series of photos of different stages of their dispute. "Take your bag away from here" in fact, the ice cream bus driver/seller wanted that man distributing brochures go elsewhere. "This is a free street" at which the clear answer, taking the body movement was: "your bag touches my car wheel".
The biggest problem is when I feel I want very much and do not want to miss the opportunity to take a particular photo or scene. That is when my hearts rhythm begins to accelerate, and more often then not I miss the photo or it gets blurred as I take it too fast.
It is not so different with Standup Comedy, you have to have guts. Not only to do it, but more important, not to think it is life or death situation! When you get out, get up and experiment, banter with the audience, feel connected, all goes well. If suddenly it becomes too important, thinking too much will change your attitude, and alas the audience reads instantly your body language. We do not laugh with or at a fellow who is afraid. Till you make believe "oh, I tremble" they can laugh with you, not if you really do.
Try to take things 'easy'. Friendly. When they see a friendly open face and body language, wether on the street where you want to take some photos of unknown people, or at a comedy club or conference when you want to share your experiences and frustrations in a funny way with a new audience, it makes them feel well and return the same friendly eye on you. They open up, connect and the most difficult part is won.
A week ago, I took photo of a seller in the small market behind the Royal festival hall. "Why me?" I answered: you have such a beautiful warm smile. And he retorted: "So have you." He answered to my admiring smile with a friendly smile. I did not even notice how I looked at him till he did not say.
All went well from there. I took home with me his warm smile and he remembered that his smile mattered. That I admired it and wanted to take it 'with me'.