Comedians Getting Their Break Through Comedy Competitions

People pursuing a career in comedy have a long and arduous road in front of them before they hit the big bucks, but comedy competitions often provide the much needed exposure they need to take their careers to the next level. Whether it’s stand-up, screenplays, or short film, comedy is often the hardest pursuit in entertainment because comedy unlike many other genres of entertainment is subjective. Luckily for the struggling artists out there, more and more companies — like Doritos, TurboTax, Nabisco — are putting their advertising dollars out there for comedic-user-generated ad competitions.

TurboTax recently had a contest on YouTube that asked for people to do comedic material on taxes. Hundreds of comics came up with their best tax jokes and posted them to the TurboTax YouTube page.

Stand-up comic John Ramsey won that competition, claiming the prize of $10,000 and opening for Jay Mohr at the Improv Comedy Club.

TV has long been the holy grail for stand-up comics but the opportunities are getting fewer with the recent cancellation of NBC’s “Last Comic Standing”. TV still offers chances to aspiring comics through TV One’s ‘Who’s Got Jokes”, which is hosted Bill Bellamy, and also NBC’s “America’s Got Talent,” but they will be competing against many other performing artists such as dancers, singers, and chainsaw jugglers. TV competitions are few and far between but offer their contestants a platform which offers exposure like no other.

For the comedic writers out there, the LA Comedy Shorts Festival is a great opportunity to compete in many competitions like comedic short films and screenplays. With big names attached to the event like Adam Corolla, Will Ferrall, and Jud Apatow, winners of these competitions have the opportunity to live the Hollywood dream. Other screenwriting competitions are out there like the one put on by The ScreenWriting Expo, but no other puts so much focus on comedic talent.