Kurt shares with us how he began his career from humble beginnings and how he continues to flourish and remain consistent in an ever-growing competitive industry.
Recently Careers24 had an interview with legendary local comedian Kurt Schoonraad. He shared with us how he began his career from humble beginnings and how he continues to flourish and remain consistent in an ever-growing competitive industry.
“I entered a talent competition, which my girlfriend had signed me up for. I came second, but found out, how much I enjoyed being in front of an audience.” Schoonraad says he was a stand-up comedian at night and a business owner during the day. He gave up his small courier business to follow his dream of becoming a professional stand-up comedian.
“The business side of me jumped at the opportunity to start the Cape Town Comedy Club in 2013 at the V& A Waterfront. The rest is history!”
Kurt tells Careers24 that he enjoys the fact that he does not have to force himself to work.
“I remember the time that I had to force myself to get dressed and catch a bus to get to work. I never needed to do this with my comedy career. It has always been and still is a very exciting thing for me to go “to work”. Schoonraad says he still gets butterflies when he steps on stage and no one day is the same as the next.
Schoonraad says he believes the most misunderstood aspect of the business side of comedy is the fact that with so many jobs falling under the “entertainment” category comedians must prove themselves over and over that what they do is a job. “People don’t understand that none of us just go up there and do the 30 minutes of material, paint a picture in 10 minutes or sing a song. It takes years to develop your artistry.
Comedians live their comedy with every fibre of their body. You wake up with comedy on your mind and you walk around the house at night, while swearing at your insomnia with comedy on your mind. We can't switch it off. It's not like a 9 to 5 job, where you go home and forget about work and start your evening or weekend.”
Schoonraad continues, “We live and breathe our business. And don’t get me started on the performance and delivery pressure. Nobody wants to be the from hero to zero guy!”.
We asked Schoonraad what the best thing is about being a comedian and he assures us it’s the fact that every day is different. “Every day is different, because every performance is different. The audience, the stage, the occasion. And dying on stage from time to time, reminds me to carry on, working hard at my craft.
I make people happy. I make them laugh. That's the best job in the world, isn’t it?”.
Schoonraad says he and the Cape Town Comedy Club are so passionate about providing a platform for aspiring comics to launch their careers as they need to support fresh talent to keep the business alive.
“It’s our lifeline. Comedy is the fastest growing art form in the world. It wouldn't survey without raw, fresh talent. “
Schoonraad adds the advice he would give anyone trying to start their career in comedy is to just do it.
“Stop talking about it. Follow your path, with dedication and focus. The universe will not let you down.
There are loads of open mic stages in the country. Go to comedy shows as much as you can. If you have been up on the open mike stages, your privilege will be that you get anywhere else in for free. Why? Because you are a comedian now. ”
For more information on the Cape Town Comedy Club, please visit capetowncomedy.com