Pay to Play: New York City Open Mics

New York City has some of the most famous comedy clubs in the world, and dozens of smaller clubs spread through out the city. My roommate does stand up comedy and when he moved to New York this summer he planned to perform at as many open mics as possible here. He wasn’t planning on having to pay for this privilege.

Sadly my roommate found out that comedy clubs in the Big Apple charge comics to perform at their open mics. My roommate realized that playing at as many open mics as possible was going to be too expensive for him.

I went to the Waltz Astoria Comedy Club’s Wednesday night open mic to talk to some other comedians how they felt about having to pay to practice their craft. Most of them accepted that having to pay to perform is just the way its done, although they were a little disgruntled by it. Up and coming comics usually don’t have a lot of money to throw around. Also they were more satisfied with the deal they got at Waltz Astoria, which was a $10 food and drink minimum, than the normal deal at most clubs which is paying $5 to perform for 5 minutes.

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