By Nick Schifani
Doug Gillon and Kyle Kordsmeier run a monthly stand-up show, Tuesday Show Comedy. And you'll never guess what day their shows fall on? Did you figure it out yet? That's right, Tuesdays. Every month on the last Tuesdays they all gather at the Brass Door. They have been at this gig for almost a year now. June is their 1 year anniversary. So far they have done 10 shows. I met with Doug last week, and he was fantastic to talk to. He filled me in on the local comedy scene. It seems like it is on the upswing and experiencing a lot of growth, which really excites me. Comedy and humor has always been an outlet for me, so it makes me happy to see local talent banding together, and bringing us Memphians some laughter.
I got a chance to talk to Doug about how what Tuesday Show is and how it has worked over the past year. The initial idea was to add a second independent showcase to compliment the already-running Don't Be Afraid of the Comedy, which would feature out-of-town comics in Memphis. It makes perfect sense, and got butts in the seats without a doubt. Doug & Kyle's shows are regularly full, and sometimes sold out. But the bigger goal was that if Memphis independent comedy got a second showcase, it would only be a matter of time before there was a third independent showcase, or a fourth, or a fifth. Doug talked a lot about his love for Tuesday Show, but also for local comedy as a whole, and how everyone in the local comedy scene works together to build shows and audiences.
One of the cooler aspects that caught my attention for Tuesday Comedy are the posters. There have been several posters that were created for shows. There are two reasons why the poster caught my attention. One, the art and drawing. They look fantastic. Tons of great color and attention to detail. Here lately they have been based of some kind of "nerdy" stuff. Like Batman, Archer, and even the show Friends. Believe me, Friends can be nerdy. The ideas and art come from a gentleman named Mitchell Dunnam. Mitchell has been a part of the Memphis designing scene for over 15 years. He has two degrees in illustration, graphic design, and a minor in art history. Mitchell even has the same love for comedy. He was asked early by Doug and Kyle to join the group. He then presented them with some at work he did in the past. He made them a poster. That poster was of all the members as cowboys! I've seen it too. It looks great. Mitchell likes to treat his art like tattoos. If you bring him an idea or photo, he will put it down on paper. That is mentality he takes with the Tuesday Show Comedy posters. The other members bring him ideas that they want to use, and he puts something together for it. I have a feeling we will see more from Mitchell in the future.
Something that I found interesting that Doug shared with me, are the personalities Kyle and himself portray on stage. So it's more than just jokes and punch lines. It's being someone that makes you comfortable on stage, as well. Kyle is the cool guy, and Doug is the nerd. I saw this evident by a Facebook post by Doug. His post included one of his sets talking about aliens. Aliens tend to be a topic that most nerds talk about. So, how could a nerd not love jokes about aliens? Being in front of people and the creativity of comedy is something that brings these guys together. They don't seem to have any stage fright at all. As an art form some consider comedy to be one of the more intelligent kind. Having to come up with topic that people care about can be hard. Or having to fend off a heckler on the spot with a quick come back. A person without being creative can't be on stage and not be able to think on their feet. Looking at it that way, I applaud the local comedians, it's a tough job.
Lastly, I think this is something that the city can get behind. Something that can become a great local scene. When I asked Doug about other comedy groups or shows. He had a great quote about that. "Anytime someone is performing or producing quality comedy in Memphis, that's a good thing. Quality comedy is good for the entire comedy community." If comedy can become a regular thing around the city, then the big goal of the Tuesday Show Comedy can come true. Is there a chance that Memphis can become one of the bigger players in the comedy world? Only time can tell. Things are starting to look pretty bright with great local groups. Again, check out Tuesday Comedy Show every last Tuesday of the month. They have a Facebook page. It has their posters and some video you can enjoy. the Facebook page is Tuesday Comedy show with Dougn and Kyle. This months is this Tuesday the 24th. The poster for this month is Star Trek themed. It's pretty rad.