Who is the stand-up lab for?

Good question! The Waltham Forest Stand Up Lab is for anyone living or working in Waltham Forest who has never stepped foot on a stage before. These sessions will help you write your first bit of material and support you on your journey to that first gig.


How much does the Waltham Forest Stand Up Lab cost?

We will be selecting 15 participants to take part. Each space is offered as part of a full bursary programme, so there will be no cost to you if you are chosen.


Do I need to have any comedy or acting experience?

Absolutely not – come as you are!


How do I apply?

The application form is on the website here: Comedy Lab: Stand Up at Soho Theatre.


When is the deadline & when will I hear if I have been successful?

Deadline is Monday 3rd May (all day). We’ll aim to respond to everyone by Monday 17th May.


What are positive action calls?

In the application form, we will ask if you identify as someone belonging to an underrepresented group, and if you would like to speak to one of the team. It’s not compulsory at all but the option is there.


How do I send a YouTube Link?

So, in the application form, we’ve indicated the three questions that help us learn a bit about you. You’re welcome to type these out but also, answer via video. If you’d like to go for the video option, simply film yourself answering the questions, stopping between each one. The idea is you have a separate video for each answer. Then upload this onto YouTube (there’s a ‘create’ or + button for web or the app, followed by an ‘upload video’ option. Be sure to set your privacy settings so only those with a link can watch the video and then copy and paste the link as your answer.


Who is the workshop leader?

The workshop leader for this stand up course is Gemma Leader. Gemma is an actor/producer, with theatre and film experience. She has performed as a Stand Up and Sketch comedian, taking shows to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and elsewhere in the UK. As a facilitator, Gemma currently leads Soho Theatre’s Stand Up Lab, working with people aged 16 and above. With her comedy and theatre company, Above Your Nerve, Gemma created a Stand Up course, for the members of Synergy Theatre Project. At Park Theatre, Gemma taught acting to adults, as part of the Park Theatre Players and ran intensive, week long devising courses for young people. Gemma is passionate about developing new work and is a dramaturg and script editor for emerging playwrights and comedy writers.


When and where will the sessions take place?

The Comedy Lab Stand-Up group will meet weekly on Saturdays (2.5 hours) and will be a mixture of online and in person. Classes will start on Saturday 5th June until Saturday 31st July. On Saturday 31st July we’ll hold a public sharing at Fellowship Square, where you’ll be able to showcase what you’ve learned over the course in a safe environment, at our very own Soho Theatre event. We ask that participants commit to attending all 9 weeks and are 18 years or older at the start of the course. Course dates are:

Saturday 5 June, 3pm – 5.30pm – online
Saturday 12 June, 3pm – 5.30pm – online
Saturday 19 June, 3pm – 5.30pm – online
Saturday 26 June, 3pm – 5.30pm – online
Saturday 3 July, 3pm – 5.30pm – online
Saturday 10 July, 3pm – 5.30pm – online
Saturday 17 July, 3pm – 5.30pm – in person, Walthamstow
Saturday 24 July, 3pm – 5.30pm – in person, Walthamstow
Saturday 31 July double session (times tbc) – in person including tech run and public sharing Fellowship Square, Walthamstow.


Why is this stand-up lab only for people who live and work in Waltham Forest?

Click here to learn more about plans for our new venue and current engagement with Waltham Forest (https://sohotheatre.com/walthamstow/).


What are the application questions?

  • What’s your first name?
  • What’s your last name?
  • What will be your age on 1st June 2021?
  • What’s your home postcode?
  • Which email shall we use to contact you?
  • Soho Theatre believes in equality, and where we can we use positive action to make sure that the people we work with are representative of our diverse community. All applicants who identify as having a disability, from a global majority background (historically defined as ‘Black, Asian and minority ethnic’) or on the LGBT+ spectrum can request an informal phone call to talk through their application. If you are unable to speak to us over the phone, we can answer any questions via email. Please let us know if this applies to you by selecting from the following options.
  • If you are in full time education (from June 2021) let us know which college or university you attend.
  • Are you currently the recipient of any of the following government benefits:
  • Why do you want to try stand up comedy? (max 200 words for a text answer, or 2 minute Youtube video link)
  • Tell us about any comedians, comedy shows, jokes you’ve seen recently. Why did it make you laugh? (max 200 words for a text answer, or 2 minute Youtube video link)
  • Choose one spot in Waltham Forest and tell us a story, anecdote or joke about it. It can be an embarrassing moment, observation or random thought. (max 200 words, for a text answer, or 2 minute Youtube video link)
  • How did you hear about Soho’s Labs?


Still have a question?

Drop us an email at education@sohotheatre.com

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