If you are based or staying in Jeddah, you must have heard about The Jeddah Comedy Club. Launched late 2012, the JCC has done history! They are a registered official platform for local Stand-up comedians to showcase their talent; not only that, they also nurture up and coming talents. Live entertainment in Saudi is very hard to find BUT that’s why Jeddah Comedy Club is quickly becoming a “Must Attend” event for locals & tourists who are visiting Jeddah.
Jeddah Comedy Club was created by Yaser Bakr, a Saudi blogger and comedian himself in association with other comedians as well. All JCC events are sold out from 2-3 days of putting the tickets to sale!
I sat down with Khaled Omar who is the creative architect in Jeddah Comedy Club and had this quick chat :
The Urbanist: How did the idea of Jeddah Comedy Club see the light? What inspired it?
Khaled Omar: The popularity of stand-up comedy in the recent years in Saudi is almost like no other form of entertainment has experienced; this fact inspired the founders to start the comedy club, which is the proper platform to nurture and develop stand-up comedians.
TU: What are the difficulties that faced you especially at the beginning?
KO: Any new venture is usually faced with many difficulties, and we had our share of them; but the support and love we found from the people made it all worth it. I would say that the Legalization & proper documentation were challenging at the beginning, we were enrolled under SASCA who are our officially partner & big supporter!
TU: The feedback of what JCC have been doing is GREAT! In your opinion, what made JCC what it is today?
KO: The Number one reason why we are doing well is our great fans and the people who supported the club by attending every show we host. In addition to that, we wouldn’t be anywhere if it wasn’t for our talented comedians who are constantly improving and always learning.
TU: Tell us about the local comedians you guys have embraced & supported?
KO: It has been great! Through the auditions that we host every other week; we have met 700 great applicants; 100 of them actually made it & performed in our shows; and now we have 30 active comedians performing nationally and internationally
TU: What has been the best thing that happened to Jeddah Comedy Club?
KO: It has to be Al-Balad historic event (Kunna-Kidda) in 2014 where we managed to produce what is considered the biggest stand-up comedy event in Saudi.
7000 people attended 10 shows featuring 34 of the top comedians in Saudi. It was great to be part of this event as we were promoting new local talents and also supporting our heritage.
TU: In ONE word. How would you describe Yaser Bakr?
TU: What are your future plans? Any stand-up in English?
KO: Expanding into other cities and countries in addition to starting our own production arm, also nurturing the talents through representation services. As for the English stand-up; we currently have some English stand-up segments especially if the main act is an English speaker; but we haven’t had a FULL show yet; however it’s definitely on our radar.
TU: How can people reach you through Social Media?
KO: @jedcomedyclub on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook
TU: Any last words for our readers..
KO: We really want to thank our fans! In the second version of “Kunna-Kidda” which occurred this year, we had over 3,000 people in just three days! We are constantly working on improving our shows and raising the entertainment value in Saudi.