Stand-up comedy is a comedic style. Usually, a comedian performs in front of a live audience, speaking directly to them. The performer is commonly known as a comic, stand-up comic, stand-up comedian or simply a stand-up. In stand-up comedy the comedian usually recites a fast-paced succession of humorous stories, short jokes called 'bits', and one-liners, which constitute what is typically called a monologue, routine or act. Some stand-up comedians use props, music or magic tricks to enhance their acts. Stand-up comedy is often performed in comedy clubs, bars, neo-burlesques, colleges and theaters. Outside of live performance, stand-up is often distributed commercially via television, DVD, and the internet. Many smaller venues hold 'open mic' events, where anyone can take the stage and perform for the audience, offering a way for amateur performers to hone their craft and possibly break into the profession.
Contributions by Dione Maddern, Stevedix, and Wmahan.