14 Sep

Chicago’s Comic: Tommy Karner

Q: What inspired you to start stand-up comedy?

A: The time that I began doing stand-up comedy, I had just graduated from Fitchburg State University (Fitchburg, MA) in 2014 with a theater degree and was living in Boca Raton, FL with my girlfriend at the time who was pursuing a grad degree at Florida Atlantic University. With very little theater opportunities and good comedy scene in South Florida, I needed to perform somehow and decided to give stand-up a shot.

Q: Describe your first performance.

A: It was an open mic at a bar called Holloway’s in Boca Raton. I got multiple loud, forced laughs of encouragement from the host. They were not deserved but they were appreciated.

Q: Do you have “pre-show” rituals? If so, what are they?

A: Not really, no. For theater, I have a long vocal warm-up and stretch but when it comes to stand-up, I find that if I just go up to have fun, the audience will reciprocate.

Q: Where in the world is your favorite place to perform stand-up? Why is this your favorite place?

A: Well, when I was 23, I got the opportunity to perform to a sold out crowd in the main room of The Comedy Store in LA. Obviously, this has been the highlight of my career, however, this opportunity is not always on the table and so I would have to say my favorite place to perform would be at Emerald City Uptown in Uptown, Chicago. I ran two shows there through 2016-2017 and it was some of the best times of my life. Being able to create a positive, loving room where comics can have fun brought me so much joy.

Q: What shows, podcasts, blogs do you produce or co-produce?

A: Through 2016-2017, I produced the DOPE meets FRESH show as well as a show called Emerald City Presents. Currently, I have no projects that I’m working too diligently on.

Q: What are three of your favorite things?

A: Combat sports, stand-up comedy and a day chilling on a lake with your buddies. This is the douchiest answer I will give, so drink it in.

Q: What is your favorite sammich?

A: Reuben.

Q: What’s one thing people assume about you, that is or isn’t true?

A: I would imagine a lot of people believe I’m a cigarette smoker be-cause often times, I yell until my voice is hoarse but that’s just it: I don’t smoke, I’m just obnoxious.

Q: If you weren’t a comic, what other job would you love to do?

A: Lumberjack and beer brewer in the middle of nowhere in New Hampshire.

Q: What are some comedy goals/dreams you have on your To Do List?

A: I would love to perform at the Comedy Works in Denver because I have heard that it is an incredibly fun room! Other than that, I just want to make as widespread of an audience as I can, feel something from my art. Not just comedy but music, acting, etc.

Q: What quality, trait and/or body part do you really like about yourself?

A: My beard is my only redeeming quality 🙂

Q: What’s one thing you wish more people knew about you? [or anything else you’d like mentioned, i.e. your education, personal life or mission statement]

A: I actually have a degree in film making with a focus in gaffing that I hardly ever use. I would love to get on some more film sets behind the camera in the next coming years.

Q: How will you know you “Made It?”

A: If I can wake up with a smile on my face every morning surround-ed by loved ones and a good income without having to pull goddamn espresso shots anymore, that’d be stupendous.

Q: Contact Info – Please list ways people can stalk you: Website, Twitter, FB, Instagram, SnapChat upcoming shows or productions you want mentioned.

A: I post mostly on Instagram and my handle is @KarnerComedy00, however, every once in a blue moon, I will usually post something on Twitter along the lines of “I still have a Twitter?!” or “Goddammit, Twitter is STUPID” so if you’d care to enjoy that, follow @KarnerComedy on Twitter. As for Facebook, if you wanna be my friend, just search Irish Lion and you’ll find me. I will probably stare at your profile for 6 months only to finally delete your request in a drunken stupor one night. I love you all!



Thank you for coming back home to Chicago!

Sorry, Boston!

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