To an audience member, an open mic night may just be a night of fun with their friends, but for stand-up comedians, an open mic night is their moment to shine. Years of successful open mic nights can pave the way for their careers.

If you’re an upcoming stand-up comedian who’s just started performing at open mics, here are a few mistakes you need to avoid:

1.    Not Preparing

Sure, you may be a hotshot amongst your friends, but standing on stage is a whole other ballgame. If you’re unprepared for an open mic, it’s going to show.

One of the telltale signs of a rookie is that they carry notes with them. It’s alright to use notes to jog your memory at the beginning of your career. But be aware that every time you look down at them, you’re losing eye contact with your audience.

Being unprepared also shows in your body language and delivery. You’ll find yourself struggling to land the punchline and you may fumble when delivering as well. All of this takes away from your act.

2.    Not Picking Your Material Carefully

Audience at a club on open mic night

Whether we like to admit it or not, we’re living in divided times where people are constantly on edge. Although many comedians believe that nothing should be off the table when it comes to comedy. However, for upcoming stand-up comedians, it’s best to avoid sensitive topics that can get people riled up.

For example, at a time where police brutality is on the news every day, you probably shouldn’t be joking about something that will be deemed distasteful.

When comedians have gained enough popularity and have a loyal audience, then they have the freedom to take risks.

3.    Hogging All the Stage Time

Despite being a tough industry to make it in, there’s a lot of camaraderie in the stand-up scene. Upcoming comedians generally root for each other. Keeping that in mind, if you’re the kind of person that’s hogging stage time, you’re doing yourself a disservice.

Don’t go over your time; when you see the light blinking, thank the audience and get off the stage. Once you’re off the stage, don’t just walk out, hang around there, and support the others.

That’s just how things are in the world of comedy; people respect each other’s craft.

Want to learn from one of the best stand-up comedians in the game?

Check out, Daryll Triplett! He’s a must-see professional stand-up comedian who’s been performing in clubs all over Louisville and Atlanta. Check out the next stops on his tour and submit an inquiry for bookings