28/06/2016

Gigging again!

Did not go out to gig, for some time.

I love the audience and their laughter and communicating with them, even for 5 minutes or 7, and after too. It still means a lot for me.

Plus, my routine always conveys something.

This occasion I could not resist "Who runs the world" a special charity event for abused women sake. I was one for a while. I know what it means to be afraid, even if it was long time ago.

Prepared a new routine, from old bits and added some new ones at the end, using what happened just now in United Kingdom. "In? Out?" I prefer, IN.

It is not perfect and I have more bits that I will not write down now, before the performance. I hope putting my routine upside down will work.

Cavendish arms are very strict on time, so I had to eliminate a lot.

The 8th July I have another gig where they give me a large 7 minutes. Of course, going down from 20 or 15 to 5 or 7 not easy.

I used for it first the new method I just learned from Doug Lipman: discover the MIT what is the most important thing for you now, in this club, this time. Then eliminate all that does not helps it. He reminded us, a second point only blurs the audience mind and distracts.

26/06/2016

2000+ Portraits Unexpected links

What links "Photographer, Portraitist" to "Storyteller" or "Comedian?"
Portraits 2000+
In all cases I used "body language" sometimes "voice" and my facial expression to connect.

25/06/2016

John Oliver - Brexit Aftermath, political humour

John Oliver - Brexit Aftermath

Oprah Winfrey "Find out what makes you alive"


Lots of stories in her speech, Oprah Harvard Commencement speech 2013
is a great speaker and so authentic.

She begins with personal stories of her life, and goes on in more then one topic.
Her speech is sprinkled with stories, hers and others.
At the end, comes back to what happened to her a year before when she felt all down and finishes:

"When you fall, and you all will at some time of your life, find out what makes you alive"

James Ryan's 2016 Commencement Speech

24/06/2016

'europe Unite' Says Churchill (1948)


See how sure he said it and listen to his voice
Alas, not enough listened to him a few week ago - not many understood that his dream was also an united Europe!

20/06/2016

5 minutes film realised by Tyson Joseph


Produced by Tyson Joseph 
for Hubdot.com 

You are many things at a time, not closing yourself in a single box. 
Do not wait till others recognise what you do, to affirm it.
Dare to do, enjoy. Live.

Life with comedian eyes is easier. 
Life with photographer eyes is more interesting. 
Life with stories can change even your own past and other people's future.

Great Humor ! Last Week Tonight with John Oliver

e

On brexit (or NOT) - and even making fun of British in general - can be done well as you see here
a great humorist against leaving Europe...

17/06/2016

Humour is a Serious thing

Convinced, I have not "funny bones", I was stunned to hear so many laughs as I told in 2010 winter, the first time "Mistaken Identity" for paying public, yes, before I told different versions of it all year long in many Toastmaster clubs in London (see below somewhere in this blog). It was a serious matter in middle of recession many had to change careers, profession.

I decided to tell how I changed my profession at age 48.

Yesterday, between 5 possible stories, the members of the Connected Speakers of London in BAML, chose this story. Possible, because I told them it was when the audience laughed a lot and I did not understand why and decided to "learn to make them laugh, when I want".

From 2011 to 2013 I attended to many workshops, many days and hours spend learning the trade.

Humour is a serious matter! Well, I took it seriously, studied its many aspects. Practiced, read, learned. From the three major long workshops I attended as I was becoming 77 to the boot camp in Las Vegas by Darren LaCroix and Judy Carter that I offered myself as consolation gift that my years 70th are behind me. I was there for 3 days, the first day was my 79th birthday, when I mourned that I will be soon 80. I can't continue saying "I am 77". Well, now at 82 I begin to think "why not"?

Darren is convinced "it happened to me" that humor can be learned, As me, he felt at the beginning not having any funny bones but as he was ready to fail, to learn and persist, he become a champ.

Judy the standup goddess and book writer, in her motivational speeches shows how humor can change lives, help healing and conquer hearts. Transform even Mess in Message and convince.

During the workshop we were given 100 pages workbook! Here I share some of the wisdom and techniques we can try out. Of course not all! Borrow a bit from different sources, is not stealing, it is Research.

Technic 1 Reluctant admission

  • Begin with a lie. Ex; "I am 20 years old"
  • Admission, quiet "Well not exactly"
  • Admission quieter "More like four times 20"
  • "Anyway" : "in my heart I still feel young even at 80"



Technic 2 This is Judy's she does it wonderfully

  • Lie boastfully
  • Admit quieter not really true
  • Admit softer the reality
  • Loudly add "Anyway" add punch line


This morning that gave me an idea that begins with "As 20 years old..." admitting only in my feelings but that gave me another idea of at 20, 40, 60 and top with 80 that is also still in works.

Find a topic, mine it, rewrite it till it shines and remember, the punch line and word is at the end.

Darren: "relate to audiences frustrations to connect"

Judy: "At the end of the laughter is the height of listening"

Remember, as it is written in so many books: Comedy is Tragedy plus Time - with attitude

Tomorrow about the power of comparing two unrelated things, notions, etc.

15/06/2016

Books about Comedy and Humour

StandUp Comedy Books-07


Judy Carter wrote as I know the first ever book about Standup Comedy, she wrote later another called Comedy Bible. I learned from her the importance of adding something on the top of the punchline. That "afterthought" makes it look impromptu and usually adds even a stronger laughter.

I went to two workshop with her, one in Las Vegas at my 79th birthday, a second one in Los Angeles a few month later about "how to transform your mess into message": an excellent workshop leader.

Be a great standup by Logan Murray, was the first ever book I read about standup and understood... most of it, as I was very new then. He was my second workshop leader, and I went later to his Impro workshop and also to his Comedy writer workshop in London. Excellent workshop leader.

It is interesting how much each differ from each other. I learned from Logan to look around me with Comedian Eyes! So important also in my life.

When I took this photo I only had 10 books all with different views and some new advices. Now their number has grown. If you read only two, read Logan's and Comedy Bible by Judy Carter perhaps.

StandUp Comedy Books-09The other two books, well I do not remember also at the time reading it I liked them, all adding a new perspective to what I know each time.

But before all that books, I recommend all Toastmasters to go through the Competent Communicator manual, and if possible twice. And those who are not yet, to join a club.

What does it teaches you, in the Toastmasters club with feedback are the basic technics of any speech and plus the confidence gained through them is essential. In any speech confidence is important, but the audience feeling fear, does not laugh. And of course, the Rhetoric devices are also important in Comedy as is the body language used and voice variety.

And yes! To have an attitude and a point of view important for you.

14/06/2016

Jerry Seinfeld Stand-Up


Keep or Through away or use eBay to send to each other

Should I admit? I like it!

The article Shannon wrote about my life and activites, is not only in page 12 and 13 of 300 000 + copies,  send to all Toastmasters all over the world, but also now on Facebook page of the International Convention August Washington DC, on Linkedin and Twitter, send by Shannon.
not only in magazine, Linkedin, Twitter and Facebook, 
but also published in the Toastmasters International page

https://www.toastmasters.org/Magazine/Articles/Never-Too-Late


Could I have dreamed a better interviewer, writer then him?
He really cares! This morning I am... quite happy (that is British understatement)

The photo that he has chosen for online is the one made after my Tallinn Comedy Workshop for Toastmasters who come from the two nordic district to listen to it. Yeah, I am the small one in the middle with at one side the Toastmaster who was the most impressed, touched by it, and fellow TM from Tallinn, workshop leader too.



13/06/2016

Embrace the problem

There is not so much difference between a Personal Story Teller and a Stand-up Comedian. 
Both through a "persona" a character (in my opinion, one of our facet) fight with obstacles, problems that come their way. Tumble, fall, fail, get up, try again and again. Sometimes, others help or suggest how we can leave it behind us, or inside us a voice suggest it using an old experience of us or of others.
Then, embracing what happens, learning from it, using it, the "character" (hero or antihero) gets up and goes farther or takes a new, most of the time better direction. 
With a stubborn attitude, an optimist attitude, not giving up (more then momentarily) and both giving courage to their audiences, the hero of story or anti-hero of comedy. To each who looks and listens.

I begun analysing in more detail my comedy set, after reading this night some philosophy from 2000 years ago saying "embrace the obstacle, use it". 
I have a long part in my set about "shaving". 
It begun, boasting how we women are advantaged over men "we do not have to shave". Well, it was about our face. Then, I remembered, how my husband's shaving and showering an evening, I must have been 33 him 34, singled me "he is not going to work, or to drink with his pals!" He was not, indeed. It was one of my awful night in my life, I felt so down. 
Well, I did not make it yet a story from it, but I told already with Spark London true stories, in Brixton, the story of the disastrous holiday after which I decided to divorce finally, on stage, putting in drama and enough humour also, and had real success with it. But I condensed it into some comedy lines. Telling also how I got out of it. 
Of course, in real life it took me more then two years. In comedy, just from one paragraph to the other. 
Well, I did demonstrate by it, no more need really telling, also I could how great it is to be a woman "because we women do not have to shave".
Then came David Jones workshop, fall 2011: it was my third workshop and I still did not go alone out to any comedy club at that time. David told me, yes, my set is good, now take out half of it and make a new half till the end of the workshop, in 6 weeks. 
Try it: it seems awful! Why change something that is already working?
It proved, he was right of course, not only to make something better, but to resolve another problem I was fighting with. Having, as woman, to shave my face after age 50 (or more). I listed all what I have  tried, all that did not work and why the hair was still there and growing back. Also, how I did on screen eradicate the hair I found on my face in a picture ! That stayed clean! To my surprise, that part delighted audiences. 
What, an old woman, computer savvy?
They could not know, I got my first computer programming diploma in 1973! From 1980 I made my living from the emerging personal computers market! I followed from inside. It still surprises all, each time I allude something at web or any use of an "app" as they call it nowadays. Makes laugh. So I use it.

I also showed my "final" solution: There is not so much difference between a Personal Story Teller and a Stand-up Comedian.
Both through a "persona" a character (in my opinion, one of our facet) fight with obstacles, problems that come their way. Tumble, fall, fail, get up, try again and again. Sometimes, others help or suggest or inside us a voice at least.
Then, embracing what happens, learning from it, using it, the "character" (hero or antihero) gets up and goes farther or takes a new, most of the time better direction. 
Both have a stubborn attitude, an optimist attitude, not giving up (more then momentarily) and both giving courage to their audiences. To each who looks and listens.
I begun analysing in more detail my comedy set, after reading this night some philosophy from 2000 years ago saying "embrace the obstacle, use it". 
I have a long part in my set about "shaving". It begun, boasting how we women are advantaged over men "we do not have to shave". Well, it was about our face. Then, I remembered, how my husband's shaving and showering an evening, I must have been 33 him 34, singled me "he is not going to work, or to drink with his pals!" He was not, indeed. It was one of my awful night in my life, I felt so down. 
Well, I did not make it yet a story from it, also I told the story of the disastrous holiday after which I decided to divorce finally, on stage, putting in drama and enough humour also, and had real success with it. But I condensed it into some comedy lines. Telling also how I got out of it. Of course, in real life it took me more then two years. In comedy, just from one paragraph to the other. 
Well, I did demonstrate by it, no more need really telling, also I could how great women do not have to shave.
Then came David Jones workshop, and he told me, yes, my set is good, now through away half and make a new half. Try it: it seems awful! Why change something that is already working?
It proved, not only to make something better, but to resolve another problem I was fighting with. Having, as woman, shave after age 50 (or more). So I listed all I had tried, all that did not work and why. What I did, on screen to eradicate the hair I found on my face in a picture ! 
Then, comes my son, "mother, it is not enough to use a bic, use also shaving cream". Denial. Me? Shaving cream? As men? Never! Well, he did bring me a bottle (even not for my birthday I pretend). After looking at it for a few weeks, I caved in, tried it out. 
The result? I found a funny face in the mirror and embraced it. Took a selfie then two or three. Printed some huge, so I can show it. When the time come, toward the end of the David Jones workshop, I showed it. Well, it does work, make laugh every time.
The most important, from that moment I felt the worry about shaving disappeared and embracing it I did use it to my advantage. Exactly, like the 2000 years old philosophy, wisdom says. And my great grand-mother Paula "from every bad something goods arrises". 
It also gave me a solid "middle" around which I can build the rest. There is a lot more that come on you as you get older, and each time I could show (more then tell only) how I embraced it. Used to mock, to make laugh, to get over it and go farther. a disposable razor.
Then, come my son, "mother, it is not enough what you use, why not also use shaving cream?". 
Denial. Me? Shaving cream? As men? Never! Well, he did bring me a bottle (even not for my birthday I pretend). After looking at it for a few weeks, I caved in, tried it out. 
The result? I found a funny face in the mirror and embraced it. Took a selfie then two or three. Printed some huge, so I can show it. 
When the time come, toward the end of the David Jones workshop, I showed it. Well, it does work, make laugh every time. Look at the previous note for the picture.
The most important, from that moment I felt the worry about shaving disappeared and embracing it I did use it to my advantage. Exactly, like the 2000 years old philosophy, wisdom says. And my great grand-mother Paula "from every bad something goods arrises". 
It also gave me a solid "middle" around which I can build the rest. There is a lot more that come on you as you get older, and each time I could show (more then tell only) how I embraced it. Used to mock, to make laugh, to get over it and go farther.

12/06/2016

Middle, the antihero

I added to my comedy routine, bits through the time and cut out others, all the way making sure it looks like a fluid tale. Linking in some way, one to the other. 

Leaving usually the beginning and end as it was. 

It took perhaps 40 - 50 times till I found a better ending and even that was constructed bit by bit. Adding some "top" on one "joke" in fact a daring sentence that came very deep from me, then topping it with bits I found later, and that left the audience roaring with laughter after laughter. 

After I found the daring sentence in a workshop I attended, it took me 3 month to dare to use it.

The story in comedy uses as main character the "unti-hero" the one trying, failing, persisting. Not giving up, trying again and even agains all odds. We feel "it is like us" even if what he/she tells is not what we lived through. But we desire, want, try and many times fail and still persist. Yes, even failing this character does not give up: so it gives a message. 

And many times, by not politically or openly accepted means, he/she wins some battles. Gets to embrace the other problems having and getting in way. 

Very important is the comedian's persona and its Attitude

It is not the attitude of a plaintive, sad, someone who has given up. Sometimes even the audience sees the blows coming before the comedian's persona. Experiment with different attitude way of expressing conveying your point. The good comedian does not just make laugh but yes conveys a point of you on anything he/she tells about or shows. 

What is the persona? A version of myself in my case, but a version you would never meet out of stage. Others create a fictive like an actors persona, I just give voice to a more autrageous self. 

I used the worst experiences in my life to poke fun of but in the way conveying what I think of cheering bastards. Of course, till it was not me. Used for it "shaving" then to link to next part, created three month later, I added (for the whole look in another post at video):

"Of course, we women have advantage over men: we don't shave. (Showing face) True? 
Pause. 
Well, till we get after 50. (Laughter)
Then, (here comes the story all I tried and did not succeed to eliminate hair from my face) finally, I decided to photoshop it out! (Laughter)

That worked, they never come back. but alas only on the screen. 

At my 77 th birthday, my son offered me a bottle. Of shaving cream. 
Shave as a man, me? Never! 
Finally I gave up. 
Looked in the mirror with shaving cream on my face: a clown looked back to me. 
Have you ever seen a woman shaving face? (discussion with audience) Want to see? 
(Show a selfie) here it is! 

This gave sometime a standing ovation and always a very strong laughter.

"After showing this picture, the skeleton was out of the cupboard and I did not care any more I had to shave before all performances." 

From here it goes farther towards one or my last end, as I connect it to what I still was anxious about.

The morning after, by Tia Atan

Thanks Tia Atan, to have taken this photo this morning!

In my online Toastmaster club, Firebirds Collective, we celebrated at the end of the meeting the article in the Toastmaster magazine by showing suddenly it, from Canada all the way to New Zeeland, through Dubai, Germany and London. I have published the screenshot on Facebook.

But this photo really come to me as a surprise! Yes, we meet each other 8 days ago at a Toastmasters Workshop in central London, again. The magazine arrived to London yesterday afternoon.This

 This is the text that goes with it:
"My admirations today go to Julie Kertesz. What an inspirational lady she is! Last Saturday when I met her again, she was so bright and shining with energy like she always does. It made me think about the importance of being positive and inspiring others. It's never too late, we're never too old. Keep on spreading the light and the wisdom, Julie!"

I got some other very nice words, thanks all - this is a special pleasure with her photography and creativity.



09/06/2016

"Size is important"

A new page in my life, a new diary too
The photo dates from 2 years ago when I was stuck in bed with broken leg. Just begun my new diary notebook, now filled, the telephone replaced also by a second hand but great iPhone, and the my iPad has problems connecting: I use my Macintosh portable instead. But, the same KINDLE.

In my Standup comedy I introduce my Kindle like this, with true stories! 

I received a message on Facebook "I am willing to become your Toy-Boy"
Toy Boy? I never heard that before. Went fast to Wikipedia.
Anyway, I do not like "boys". I prefer men. As to "toys" : I have them in my drawer.

Near my bed, always at arm length, is my favourite toy. Because SIZE is important.
Well, not always, believe me, but some times.
That toy is my dear Kindle! (I show).
I needed it after my cataract operations when I could not use my eyeglasses. I can read with Huge Size Characters on it!
After 9 month, I did not need any more big size, so... I used Kindle to hide "50 shades of grey", from my grand-children. All three huge volumes and... 50 more books like that.

All near my bed, at arm length. This last phrase I did never add till now. Should I?

Anyway, this example shows how one can use one things that disturbed, angered you turn it comic.
Then make laugh about it and also put in audience head : what you did NOT say...
Then explain what you meant, and even add to it something new to laugh of.

The part about 50 shades of grey worked better when it just appeared and many spoke of it... now it become "old news" so perhaps have to find something else instead.