Wednesday, January 29, 2003

Felber Tonight! Catch me at:

"Hump Night"
Chelsea Playhouse
125 W22nd street

This is a fantastic stand-up show hosted by Sean Conroy and Eddie Pepitone. Formerlly at UCB theater, now at their temporary digs down the street. Here's a review of Hump Night on Citysearch.

Yesterday the New York Times had an article about the Upright Citizen's Brigade Theater.

The article was about the fantastic work that has happened there and the sad story of losing their permanent home.

Glad they got the press, wish for their speedy success in finding a new home, but I can't help but be peeved once again that the Times doesn't cover comedy. They almost don't have a right to talk about the great shows that have been there, because they'd never review them. Bah. Feh. And in conclusion, Harumph.

Saturday, January 25, 2003

Even More Shameless Self Promo!

Felber's Frolics
Every Saturday @ 10:30 PM
Ye Old Tripple Inn
West 54th Street Between Broadway & 8th Ave.
FREE, no minimum

Tonight Felber's Frolics welcomes yet another cavalcade of ever-changing always impressive comedians:

Jane Campell
Rob Paravonian
Ritch Duncan
Andrew Donnelly
Clara Bijl

Plus will also feature Magic Star Ramon!
Actually, his levitating cigarette trick is awesome.

also also wik: the thrills of Monologue Challenge!

The above comedians credits are quite impressive and include:
National TV, College and club circuit, writing for Colin Quinn's "Tough Crowd", contributing jokes for Kilborn and SNL, running a hot show in NYC, co-founding Jest magazine, appearing on a zillion commercials and being French.

Check what flavorpill said about us:

What happens when you take a historic Irish Bar, add some of New York City's best comics, and throw in a host who's the love child of Bette Midler, Janis Joplin and Lenny Bruce? Well, of course, it's Felber's Frolics. The weekly comedy cavalcade is back with all the inappropriate jokes, bawdy musical nuggets, and, once again, the all star line-up. Susie Felber, with the help of her brother Adam (comedian, screenwriter and NPR personality), bring their one-of-a-kind style to the local bar which has witnessed many a star be born over the years. So come down for the cheap drinks, killer chicken fingers, and rowdy local hecklers for a night that comes straight out of a B movie.

Friday, January 24, 2003

Below, you'll find my rant about Last Comic Standing auditions. After sleeping on it, and hearing the horror stories of others, I see my lot wasn't that bad. I didn't have my camera smashed, I didn't have to wait in the cold, I didn't end up having a nervous b on stage and I didn't have to endure any barbs of hilarity from the guys auditioning me.

So what of those guys? I've since put myself in the shoes of The Tonight Show dudes, and found I felt quite sorry for them. What a special kind of torture it must have been for them. To be forced to sit through thousands of comics and even more "comics" must have been draining and dull and depressing.

Still, I would do their job in a minute for little more than a turkey burger with a side of mash.

Wednesday, January 22, 2003

Last Comic Standing
Susie Will Sit This One Out

I just auditioned for a Jay Mohr NBC show-to-be called "Last Comic Standing." It's set to be a reality show and competition that Mohr is hosting and producing. Comics live in a house in Las Vegas as they perform and get tossed off. By audience vote? Panel? No clue.

Cattle call was two days ago, booked auditions today. Reality shows frighten me to no end. They seem they are a great way to become a national joke and perhaps because maybe they help writers like me starve (still, I could stand to lose a few...). But I do have friends who have been employed as producers with reality shows. I have watched and even enjoyed them. So though I don't want to be in one, I'm not someone who thinks they're the work of the devil or even something to sneer at.

In all, fame for fame's sake is not important to me. If it was, there's lots of things I would do for my career other than self-sabotage. But I digress. I got the op to audition and decided to go because:

1. Convinced they would never ever pick me. I don't fit into the kooky standard categories. e.g. 12 white guys, 3 black guys, 5 hot chicks, 1 older/fat crazy chick and someone apt to get naked in the house...

2. I hoped someone new from NBC would see me. The few who do know me at NBC here like me (say you do!) I think, but LA doesn't know me from Adam. Actually, they probably don't know Adam either.

So I asked and found out beforehand someone new will be there. The two dudes who cast The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. Now that didn't fill my panties with egg whites, but yeah, I did think that was pretty cool.

The Audition, She Is Near
Just got done with the audition ... in short...
Many lovely and accomplished comics there I knew, a few I didn't. A comedian I knew said he was very excited to make the "semi-finals" so I guess that was what they were calling today. Today was the booked auditions plus the few they carried over from the cattle call.

Before the audition backstage, a camera was stuck in my face, but I didn't mind because the cameraman was quite sweet, interestingly handsome and wearing a Yankee cap. Cam man looked a bit like a younger Father Ted and was with a nice chick who was something important. I knew she was important, because she had a clipboard. Anywho, he and the chick asked me questions. At this, I was hilarious. I wasn't trying, but I was totally calm and even enjoyed it.

Oh I was cracking them up. Yeah, I was a STAR! Well, the jokes were cheap. Judge for yourself. Only remember a few...

Camera dude: Do you want to live in a house with a bunch of comics?
Me: I'm not convinced I do actually... suppose it depends on what snack foods will be provided."

Clip Chick: Some people say women aren't funny, what do you say?
Me: I say tell me who they are and I'll mess them up bad.

Camera dude: How do you feel doing this audition?
Me: It beats hooking. No, kidding. Doesn't beat hooking at all. Hooking pays.

You get the gist...

The Audition Cometh!
Almost immediately I'm onstage. Two Tonight Show dudes up front in light, sitting at an elevated desk. Then in the dark, I use my bat sense and detect a zillion people milling around or sitting in the club. The Comedy Garden is large. Empty of most chairs and tables it was like a hip cavern. Holy crap-ola, thinks I! How many people are working on this show? There were about 7 upfront plus all them network children of the night in the club.

How'd You Do Already, Susie?
I was not horrible, but not very good. I'm pretty honest about that stuff. Like I didn't do wonderfully at CCL last Thursday, but I killed at the Charity Jam on Saturday. See? I can say both about myself.

A joke or two made them laugh, but the general impression I gave was someone who was nervous.

Damn. All I wanted was a fabulous impression on The LA peeps and I don't think that happened. After two jokes, I saw the guys at the table make a check mark on the paper. One looked back to someone for a nanosecond and then gave the "we're politely listening but let's hope she ends it" face. OK, Maybe I'm imagining that, but I don't think so. I wrapped it up quick, but know, we were asked to do 2-3 minutes of stand-up. That's it. No More. NEXT!

I got off the stage and cute camera dude asks me, "So was it fun?." I can't remember for the life of me if he was holding the camera when he did, though I hope he wasn't. I smiled and said, "If your definition of fun is a living nightmare, than yes. Yes, I had fun. Thanks."

In Conclusion
I blame no one but myself. But I have almost always done poorly doing comedy without an audience.

I can perform for 3 people, I can perform for 300. And I have. I love the rowdy crowds and I love the quiet "convince me" crowds. I hardly ever get nervous doing comedy. But I do lack the ability to get it up comedywise, to slay people who are not there to see a show. There, that IS my biggest fault. You know my weak spot, now you may fire at the little vent and blow up my comedy Death Star. But please don't

Still, I think auditioning, doing comedy without an audience, is torture. It's like making love to the dead. You might be able to get off if you can ignore the cold flesh and work really hard, but it's definitely nasty.

My, Is That Your Bitterness Showing?
OK, meant what I said in defense of reality shows.

Then again, anything and everything that was filmed there today on stage and backstage can be used in perpituity throught the universe without paying me or any other comic one red cent. Get it? NBC can use our embarrassing moments in every promo, during the show and the people on Alpha Centuri may watch our auditions and air it again and again and we get no dosh. Silly me didn't realize that before agreeing to the audition. Ah the humanity!

Years ago, please forgive me if I get this wrong as I can't find where I first read it, a comic whose name escapes me threw himself off a club's roof in LA and dies. A note attached to him says, "I played the Improv." Jay Leno then led a protest because the comedy clubs weren't paying comics. Or perhaps the protest came first? But still, WOW. Comics stuck up for themselves and there was a change.

Flash ahead to today. Comics who appear on TV and get paid to headline out of town or who write for major TV comedies can't get booked into the clubs unless they do a "bringer show." A bringer show is where a comic must bring paying audience members, or else. Or else they don't go up. Hence, the quality at the clubs, other than the headliners is often crap. No working self-respecting comic does "bringers." Or once in a blue moon they do, but for a tape.

And so the new talent rarely mixes with the old, unless they do Luna Lounge or the well known have a very bold spirit to branch out. The older stand-ups, most of them, have no idea about the healthy comedy scene that thrives here in NYC outside the clubs. Seeing the movie "Comedian" I thought, Orny Adams? This is who Seinfeld was exposed to? This is who is warming up for him? Oi.

There is an amazing, talented, huge, tight knit group of comedians right now. They know what good comedy is. They know why they are doing it. They are artists (no snickering). They are below the radar. Sometimes, but not often they get press. But since most newspapers regard stand-up and comedy in general is if it smell's like old 80's fish, it ain't often.

Open the weekend section of The New York Times. Dance! Opera! Jazz! Classical! Heck, right now if you dance around in your apartment long enough, they'll review you. But comedy? No sir.

(Don't get me started on papers that have an article where the journalist goes to try out stand-up at an open mic. The Times did one with a grotesque picture. Basically these articles come out all the time. All the boys who are too pussy to perform without ironic distance, do it. Then the article admits they weren't brilliant, but talks about how horrible all the acts were. I said don't get me started...)

Sadly, The New York Times doesn't carry the comics, either kind.

Well, there's one exception... the Times will review comedy films. so there's dance reviews up the wazoo next to long tracts about fare like "Snow Dogs" and "Kangaroo Jack." Double oi.

So from the days of a bold Leno sticking up for comedian's rights to now: most young working comics have given up on the clubs, make their way in obscurity and once in awhile do an audition that might exploit them just to say, "We are here!"

It reminds me of "Horton Hears a Who." Maybe if we comedians could be pursuaded by or heard by someone powerful... If we collectively make as much noise as possible we will prove our existence. I'm holding out for a Horton till the morning light.

*Fun fact about Jay Mohr! Years ago he venutred forth and played the Ye Olde Tripple Inn back when it was a really rough open mic. Forget Jerry McGuire, he had me at "Tripple Inn."

Sunday, January 19, 2003

Ferber? I Hardly Know 'er!

So here's a glowing review of the short film I was in called Room Tone. Since I like praise, I'll let the fact that he calls me Susie Ferber slide. I personally thought I was pretty shite in this. Oh, I know what you're thinking, "You Susie? Bringer of levity and joy to tens of tens of people? How can this be?"

I don't know...sure I'm normally a brilliant and finely nuanced actress. Why one need only look at my multiple appearances on Late Night with Conan O'Brien to see my breadth and range! On Conan I have not only played a whore, but also a prostitute, a hooker, a lady of the night and a ho. My brother says that if I take a few more acting classes and study hard I may someday snag the role of streetwalker. A gal can dream.

In this case, however, I think maybe the reviewer needs to put the cap back on the glue.

Where Are You Now?
Google for Good, not Evil

Scientists spend oodles of money broadcasting radio waves into space, hoping another planet says "Yo!" back. This is a much more effective and likely way to find signs of intelligent life. Here I list people who knew as a nerdy lass and liked. People who now and again float across my consciousness and am still curious about. Hopefully they, or someone they know, will be bored at work one day and find their most honorable mentions here and I will find out where in heck and what in heck they are now.

Important caveat: the people I list here are not "old flames" by any means, nor are the recollections particularly interesting. It's an experiment. As such it is probably of no interest to you, casual anonymous blog reader, who only came here searching for some quality goat porn.

Glen Shor
Valedictorian of our high school class. Serious, smart but always ready for a laugh. Making Glen laugh was one of the most satisfying feelings. I did a report on Ralph Nader for AP something or other - government? I don't remember. But I do remember bringing in a boom box and after the wind up, hitting play and praising Ralph Nader to the Hallelujah chorus.

Now hang on a pot pickin' second, I need you to know that this was long before Ralph ran for president with the Green Party. Not that I still don't admire Ralph Nader for his good works, but these days one is apt to imagine a woman praising Ralph while blogging in her hemp underoos as she dries her snow-covered Birk's by the fire. No sir. Je suis not one of those Ralph fans.

In any case, it made him laugh and that was always way more important to me than a grade. We were both voted Class Thespian. Though I acted in most every production, the honor was probably bestowed upon me because they thought I liked women. Glen Shor , where are you now?

Howard Delman, Howie Delman
I seem to remember we had very little interaction in high school. How it came to be that one summer we were pen pals, I have no clue. That summer he wrote lengthy letters to me about nothing in particular and I ate them up like catfish. I would say that he was not on my radar as someone who was particularly clever and I mean no offense by that. In person he seemed shy and spoke slowly in a very deep but low voice. Howie's letters revealed brilliant humor, energy and maturity I had not imagined. Being friends so quickly and closely may have scared me? I'm not sure. In any case, our friendship fizzled once the summer ended. The connection was lost in person and amidst the horror that Jericho High School was to me. Most of my close friends lived in other towns and I spent most of my energies getting myself over the wall. So Howie Delman , where are you now?

Well, laundry waits for no woman. Or it does, but neighbor's don't wait to pounce on it and fling it about. And so I must away.
What a Big Famous Comedian Does on a Sunday.

A rare glimpse into the glamour stuffed world of Susie.

1. Consider shower. Dog needing walk asap in freezing temps, makes me forgo shower as I am putting myself at risk for developing hairsicicles.

2. Walk dog. It's so cold I contract gonorrhea just for the burning sensation.* Decide to hoof it over to McNulty's coffee emporium, so as to cleverly save money and bask at how clever I am by making my own latte. Learn McNulty's is closed until 1PM on Sunday.

3. Stroll over to Original Espresso Bar and plunk down 4 bucks for a latte. My mutt gives me the hairy eyeball as I do.

4. Come home, decide shower must wait until after laundry. Previous night's 2 comedy shows plus extra curricular festivities are coming home to roost. Must find out who filled my head with marshmallow fluff. That's not nice. Still, proud I didn't go in for the comedians 4-7:30AM karaoke and diner shift. Clever girl.

5. Defrost freezer! A good idea, but an even better way to avoid working on new script.

6. Laundry has been in dryer for past 3 hours and is probably done. I can hear all my whimsical socks calling my name.

7. It's only 3PM and I eagerly await the bold challenges and adventures that are sure to ensnare me!

Tune in next time to Susie's Sunday... the day when anything can happen, but usually doesn't.

*I know, this is one of the oldest jokes on the planet. In fact, it was first told way back when the earth was still cooling and dinosaurs ruled the earth. What cracked them up in the caves, still gets me.**

**Yeah, I KNOW dinos and man didn't live at the same time, but cut me a little slack, OK? I don't come to your blog and knock the dick out of your hand.***

***Sorry, that was uncalled for. You know I love you, baby. Who's the cutest blog reader? YOU ARE! Yes. you. are.

Monday, January 13, 2003

Shameless Self Promo: Part the Second*

3rd Annual Charity Comedy Jam
Saturday night, January 18th, 10:00pm
Bowery Poetry Club
308 Bowery between Bleeker and Houston.
Proceeds to benefit HELP USA (
This show has sold out both times before - so get your tickets in advance at

*What? You want maybe to hear about my mundane life? OK fine. My dog is currently sleeping upside down on the couch, sunning his balls on an heirloom quilt.

The lineup:

Craig Baldo: From Comedy Central's Premium Blend and NBC's Late Friday

Bridget Smith and Amy Crossfield: From Comedy Central's Laugh Riots

Jen Kirwin: From the Montreal Comedy Festival

Rebecca Tingley: From Comedy Central's Laugh Riots

Demetri Martin: From Letterman and Conan

Eugene Mirman: From Conan and NBC's Late Friday

Susie Felber: From Conan and Caroline's on Broadway

Tuesday, January 07, 2003

Shameless Self-Promo
I'm performing in the Ha! Comedy Festival, twice this January.
I'm hosting a fabulous stand-up show:
Thursday, Jan 30, 8pm @ The St. Marks Theater / $7 ($5, students/seniors) Susie Felber hosts, with comics Becky Donahue, John Mooney, Leo Allen and Andrew Donnelly.
and then I'm doing a Staged Reading I'm writing called "Staged Reading." That's January 28th at 7PM in the Red Room (E4th Street between 2nd and 3rd, upstairs above KGB bar) & it's Free.

Right now I'd much rather give you the links to the Ha! Fest's site, than actually work on my script. So here you go*...

Ha! Comedy Festival

*yeah, that's a picture of me in a cage. shaddup.

Monday, January 06, 2003

Award For Most Popular Thing to Post on all Personal Blogs

Winner: The post in which the blog owner shares all the wacky searches that led people to his/her blog.

Runner up: The post in which the person tells you about their mundane life convinced that they're cool because they freely admit that they're a sad lame nerd-o.

Congratulations to all the Winners!*

*See Irene Cara's song in the 1986-ish Academy Awards in which she sings "Here's To The Losers" during a montage of non-Oscar winning films. Contains the classic line, "Losers can be winners after all."