It is easy to become deluded by the audience, because they laugh. Don’t let them make you buy the lie that what you’re doing is for the laughter. Is what we’re doing comedy? Probably not. Is it funny? Probably yes. Where do the really best laughs come from? Terrific connections made intellectually, or terrific revelations made emotionally.
– Del Close
The school year’s winding down at SLA. Courses are drawing to a close.
For my senior Storytelling class, Friday marked the final class story slam of the year.
Amid all the stress and work of closing out the school year, the slam reminded me of something I’ve known since I was a little kid – it’s important to laugh.
Four of the stories Friday reminded me of the humor possible in the mundane.
Christine told the story of how a childhood affliction frequently led to quarantine.
Then Talib recounted how a trip to the bathroom when a bit off course.
Andrew gave us the choice between a story of a trigger happy 7 year old and stealing from his father.
Finally, Narcissa copped to her paranoia brought about by marathoning television.
The theme for the day was “Prohibit,” and each of the kids presented their own unique take on it.
I laughed harder than I’ve laughed in a long time.
There is truth in comedy.
The story each kid told wasn’t necessarily anything supernatural. Each was a moment that could have happened in anyone’s life. The key to the stories and to the class was to find a way to explode the moment so that its sharing seems at once interesting and personal for the audience.
Each student exploded the moment, and we were better for it.
If we built community within the classroom and had a good time along the way, well, then so be it.