Fort Wayne Stands Up
Sep25

Fort Wayne Stands Up

Fort Wayne is nothing to laugh at, unless you are a comedian. Two recent initiatives have taken root, both with unique, organic and homegrown perspectives on comedy: The Bomb Shelter and Jirk Comedy.   The Bomb Shelter The brainchild of Danee Pye (DP) and Alex Brown (AB), two classy creatives behind pyecommabrown, the Bomb Shelter is a safe space for novice comics to take a chance and try to make people laugh. There’s one simple rule—no heckling. You see, the concept of the Bomb Shelter is two-fold: spotlight talented people and give them the chances they might not otherwise get, and shelter them from heckling when jokes die, or “bomb.”  The first Bomb Shelter was held in the summer of 2012, in the basement of Brown’s mother’s home. The basement gave the perfect ambience of a safe space, exactly where you would want to be in the event of a nuclear war. To take the concept to the next level, Danee planned an entire menu of non-perishable fare, from epic Twinkies to dried fruit crudite. Now the Bomb Shelter has expanded to the B-Side at One Lucky Guitar, with another event at the end of October. TB: How did you conceive of the Bomb Shelter? DP: People were on Twitter talking about how great it would be to do stand up somewhere, and then Alex tweeted, “What if I just had a stand-up night in my living room?” A bunch of our friends responded affirmatively. We picked a day to do it and we started to think about taking it a bit more seriously. Sometimes we like to take things a little too seriously. That’s how we came up with the Bomb Shelter. That spun off the idea of having bomb shelter-related food and the videos. AB: I think the way that we work idea-wise is that the very first part of the idea starts way earlier and then there’s something that finally kicks it up. So I think we talked about doing some kind of comedy thing or had the idea and then Twitter was what got the momentum going. And like Danee said, our momentum gets out of hand… and we have chocolate covered Twinkies. DP: And Pinterest also helps. So it was a Tweet that spiraled out of control. AB: Like so many good ideas.  DP: And then when we got the responses of who was really interested and we started to think about how many people were actually going to come, we realized that we couldn’t actually fit that many people in our living room. We had to figure something else out, and that’s how it ended...

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