The speaking gig from hell

by Scott | 6/4/2009

As research for the book, I’ve been collecting stories of things going wrong. From hecklers, to equipment failures, to tough crowds.

Today I’ve heard one of the best stories of things going wrong. It’s a great story of what he calls a hell gig.

Comedian Colin Quinn gets invited to speak at Robert De Niro’s birthday party, and nearly everything that can goes wrong, goes wrong, in front of dozens of major celebrities like Robin Williams, Harvey Kietel, Billy Crystal and others.

It will be the best ten minutes of your day – Listen here or download the mp3.

If you have a speaking disaster to share for possible inclusion in my book, leave a comment.

2 Responses to “The speaking gig from hell”

  1. CJ Alexander Says:

    Hi Scott — Hilarious link, thanks. Made my day.

    I’m relatively new to stand-up comedy, but I’ve bombed often enough that it all rang painfully true, especially the part about how you start saying things out of sequence once you start bombing. I’m not sure what that is, exactly — fight or flight response, maybe, where your brain turns on the automatic pilot and the subconscious starts doing whatever it wants? It’s an eerie experience, though, because it’s like your conscious self is sitting in the co-pilot’s chair watching the plane go down in a flaming wreck and still can’t do anything about it.

    Thanks again for the link!

  2. Colin Quinn’s Hell Gig | Creating a Comic Says:

    [...] Scott Berkun, I saw that Quinn recently shared a story about a hell gig, where he was asked to do some time at [...]

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