« Training Teachers to Make High (and Middle) School Musicals | Main | 'Dr. Horrible's Sing-Along Blog' »

Comedian Ashley Strand at the Capital Fringe Festival

Tales_of_youthful_humiliation_2 Starting tonight, comedian Ashley Strand will bring his New York comedy to Washington, DC, as part of the 2008 Capital Fringe Festival.

First, Strand and fellow NYC stand-up comedian Rob Gorden present the world premiere of Tales of Youthful Humiliation, where storytelling meets comedy. See Rob encounter a shaman/college roommate who changes his life!  See Ashley summon his Odin-Berserker rage! See what the NYC comedy club crowds will miss! Tales of Youthful Humiliation runs July 16-20 at 8 & 10 p.m. at The Playbill Cafe in DC.

Next week, Ashley Strand is back on stage -- by himself this time -- performing the world premiere of his one-man show La Figlia di Mussolini and Other Stories. Featuring a brutal public dismantling of a service employee, deception and self-betrayal, and a shocking formative experience involving an older sibling, the show is a mix of comedy, humiliation, and massive guilt.  La Figlia di Mussolini and Other Stories runs July 23-27 at 8 p.m. at The Playbill Cafe.

I met Strand a couple of years ago, when I was still an NYU journalism student and he was working his way up the ladder of the New York comedy scene, handing out flyers on the sidewalk to earn seven minutes of stage time. At the time, he had already been working as a comedian for two years -- and had not yet been paid a cent for his act.


From my interview with Strand:

When he started out at open mike nights and various comedy clubs over a year ago, Strand says, "It was two months of total ego annihilation. And not in the good, Eastern, 'losing attachment' sort of way. It was the bad, Western, still-trying-to-maintain your-ego-while-being-crushed way. Some places I did so badly that I thought, I can never even walk down that block again."

Even after each bad set, Strand knew he had to just get up there again, because he says that he immediately felt more comfortable on stage as a comic than he ever had as an actor. He still has to deal with the typical insecurities that face any performer -- the difference is that comedians use those same insecurities to make other people laugh.

"All of my comedy is based on my suffering," Strand says. "I've been sucking for a long time, with a few moments of not sucking mixed in. But the few moments of not sucking really kick ass."

Strand has since moved up from small clubs to more reputable venues like New York City's Gotham Comedy Club and others. To read more about Strand and the struggles of an up-and-coming stand-up comedian, click here.

Museum of Sex

Tickets for both shows are $10. The 2008 Capital Fringe Festival runs through July 27 in Washington, DC.

-- Daniel Lehman

Dig This


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Comedian Ashley Strand at the Capital Fringe Festival:


The comments to this entry are closed.