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How Comedy Works

At a Glance

  • Learn the rules behind all great comedy
  • This course presents a critical and serious (though funny) exploration of comedy as an art form
  • Practically use the tools taught on your next comedy project

Screenwriter David Misch (“Mork & Mindy”, “The Muppets Take Manhattan”, “Duckman”, “Police Squad!”, “Saturday Night Live”), author of the award-eligible “Funny: The Book”, presents a class which comes with an ironclad guarantee that it will impart no usable skills.

Okay, that could be an exaggeration, but David’s given the same guarantee at the Smithsonian Institute, Austin Film Festival, Actors Studio, Yale, Columbia, Oxford University, American Film Institute, University of Sydney, VIEW Cinema Conference (Torino, Italy) and the Burbank Comedy Festival. The seminar has no direct instruction but is a critical, and serious (and funny), exploration of comedy as an art form.

“How Comedy Works” gives actors, writers, directors, producers and Crafts Service personnel a closeup view of comedy’s innards, the idea being that understanding how comedy works will help you work in comedy. Anyway, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

Topics include the Rule of 3 (Why are things funnier in threes? Really, why? I mean, why?); the relationship between Comedy and Logic (spoiler: they’re bitter enemies); the calculations involved in timing; comedy cues, and why withholding them is sometimes the best way to get a laugh; why your body is hilarious; the evil of punchlines; comedy “placebos”; and how the mechanics of jokes – tension and resolution, pattern recognition, misdirection, and surprise – provide a template for all humor.

As for practical applications, the presentation includes copious comedy clips from TV and movies which show how these principles translate into actual laughter. So forget all that stuff about no usable skills.

Join David Misch for this in-store event!

April 1st, 2017 1:00PM - 4:00PM

REVIEWS

“A sell-out crowd, lots of laughing and learning about why and how comedy works; both grad students and faculty got a lot from the evening.” – Alan Kingsberg, Columbia University

“It takes a serious mind to analyze comedy. It takes a funny mind to appreciate it. David Misch is of two minds.” – Jason Alexander

“Anyone who can engage and hold the attention of my jaded Advanced Screenwriting class knows whereof he speaks. David did for over two hours and left them wanting more.” – Ron Osborn, Art Center College of Design (Pasadena) 

LOCATION

The Writers Store
3510 W. Magnolia Blvd.
Burbank, CA 91505

Saturday April 1st, 2017
1:00PM - 4:00PM

Product Details

Return Policy

Your satisfaction is our top priority. If you are not satisfied with your purchase, please return the item(s) for an exchange or refund within 30 days from the purchase date, unless otherwise noted on the product page.

Ship the item(s) to The Writers Store via a traceable and insured method. You will be responsible for return shipping fees.

Please include a completed Return Form with your shipment. Refunds take up to one week to process once we have received the item(s).

Software returns must be deactivated and uninstalled from your computer before a refund may be issued. Please contact the software manufacturer if you need assistance uninstalling or deactivating your software.

The following items are not returnable: Hollywood Creative Directories, DVDs (opened), and Gift Certificates.

Meet the Author: David Misch

David Misch has been a comic folksinger, stand-up comedian and screenwriter; his credits include the multiple-Emmy-nominated “Mork and Mindy”, the Emmy-losing “Duckman”, the Emmy-ignored “Police Squad!”, the Emmy-engorged “Saturday Night Live”, and the Emmy-ineligible “The Muppets Take Manhattan”. David’s written Funny: The Book and A Beginner’s Guide To Corruption; he blogs for The Huffington Post, and his play “Occupied” is in development at the Skylight Theatre in Los Angeles.

David’s taught comedy at USC, musical satire at UCLA, and spoken at Oxford University, the Smithsonian Institute, University of Sydney (Australia); Yale, 92nd St...

$79.00