This is the fifth post in my series featuring local people from Utah that showcase a special ability. Whether it's selling something on etsy, acting, making costumes or even teaching birthing classes, these lovely people enjoy what they do and some even do it on the side of full time jobs and families. If you want to be featured please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
So I am introducing Melissa Merlot, a very funny woman who does podcast and stand up comedy. I have seen her once or twice myself and really enjoy her brand of humor. Welcome to the Spot Light Melissa!
What type of business: ie what do you sell/make/do?:
I'm a comedian.
Website/store address/contact information/pricing/Where you perform. Where can my readers find you, see you!:
My Website has a list of shows and podcasts that I have been on and will be on. It has other fun facts about me too and I am also on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.
The Left Show
For my readers who don’t know, you perform standup comedy, tell me, how long have you been doing this?:
I like to say I have been doing comedy for about 5 years. It has really been closer to 8 maybe 9 but I like 5 it is a good number. In 5 years I will still say I have been doing comedy for about 5 years. I've never been good at math.
What made you want to get into comedy?:
Stand-up comedy was just something I always wanted to do. When I was little growing up in the 80s stand-up was on television all the time and I was obsessed with it. But I never really thought of actually doing it until I was well into my 20s(about 5 years ago of course) so it was something I decided to try later in life. I am very glad that I did.
Have you done other types of comedy? I know you have done some radio podcasts, but what about TV, movies, writing?:
Podcasts are fun and I have been a guest on a few. Currently I am a co-host on The Left Show podcast which is political and very comical. The Awkward Hour with Brian Staker was the first podcast I was a co-host of. It is great and perfect for me because it is about all things awkward.
Stand-up and being on stage is my thing so I haven't done TV, movies, or writing comedy. I did write a poetry book called Firewalk it is available on Amazon. But it isn't funny poetry though it is my nature loving, tree hugging, and struggling to deal with emotions side.
Where do you get your inspiration from?:
My inspiration comes from my twisted sense of humor that I developed from being a frustrated and highly sensitive idealist. Laughter is an important coping mechanism so I want to bring more of that into people's lives.
What’s your process? Do you wing it up there on stage? Do you memorize a script or do you just memorize the basics of what you want to talk about and run with it?:
When I first started doing comedy I delivered all my material by memorizing it like a script. Then I started to use more improv on stage and that seemed to work better for me. So now I use a bit of both in my sets.
What do you consider your style of comedy, what do YOU find funny?:
Social commentary is my favorite topic. Anything that pokes fun at human behavior and social norms I am a big fan of. I am a rebel to the core and I can't stand anything that society tells people they should be. People should be true to their hearts in my world and not worry about what other people say about it. Of course I also like potty humor because I am so mature, yes I also enjoy sarcasm.
Who are you favorite comedians?:
This question is hard because I have so many. Doug Stanhope is one of my all time favorites and a few years ago I had the pleasure of opening for him. So yeah Eddie Izzard, Tracey Ullman, Joe Rogan, Marc Maron, Karen Rontowski, Patton Oswalt, and Amy Schumer. Of course the late greats Patrice O'Neal and Bill Hicks too. I just love comedy so I have so many favorites just pick one and probably at some point they were on my favorite list.
What are your plans with this career? Stand up forever? Or are you going to take over the world with humor?:
Stand-up forever yes! I would love to take over the world with humor. I'm working on new career goals with comedy now since it has been 5 years(yup still sticking with that) so it is time to branch out.
Is this your full job? Or do you have to work somewhere else to…pay this bills…so to speak:
Yes I do have a day job still. I would love to have just comedy pay the bills but right now that isn't the case.
Does Salt Lake have a large comedy community? Was it hard to break into it?:
Yes Salt Lake has a fairly large comedy community and it isn't hard to break into at all. For the most part the local comedians here are friendly and supportive of each other. We have a lot of different shows and open-mics around the valley so come check us out.
I have heard that comedy can be considered an “all boys club” what do you think about that?:
There are a lot of funny girls in our local scene now. I love it! When I started 5 years(plus a few years) ago there weren't very many women. Yes comedy will always be a boys club just because way more boys do it than girls. But it seems to be opening up and welcoming more females into it. I think that is from more funny women in the media right now.
Take some time and check out Melissa! She is an awesome funny lady and can always use more people in the audience!