Rolling Stone Looks At Comedians Selling Tickets Like Rock Stars


The Kings Of Comedy tour showed that fans have a demand for comedy that can fill up arenas. Fast forward to now that truth stil remains. Rolling Stone took some time out to examine the growing number of live comedy sales, and notice comedians are doing just as good as rock stars. Check out an excerpt of the piece, below.

Live comedy has been surging for several years — mostly due to a rise in social media, YouTube and Netflix, but also a wave of new talent from Broad City to Hannibal Buress to Key and Peele, whose “Substitute Teacher” video, for example, has more than 74 million views. “I don’t feel it’s ever not been big. When there’s a disaster, people still want to laugh,” says Stacy Mark, a partner with WME, the huge talent agency that represents top comedians. “It’s just everybody’s starting to catch up to it.” Billboard estimated live comedy ticket sales at $300 million last year, and more and more 2015 standups are doing arena-level business. The Black and Brown Comedy Get Down tour, with George Lopez and Cedric the Entertainer, has sold roughly 10,000 to 13,000 tickets per show, according to promoters, while the recent Wild West Comedy Festival, with Hart and Lewis Black in Nashville, drew 51,000, more than doubling last year’s attendance. “Every city has at least one comedy festival now, of varying degrees of size,” says Nick Nuciforo, head of comedy touring at United Talent Agency. “There are more comedians playing theatres and arenas than ever before.”


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