Stand Out: The National Queer Comedy Search

By: Adam Guerino and OutLoud Chicago


Calling all comedians! The search is on.

Presented by OutLoud Chicago, Absolut Vodka, Sidetrack The Video Bar and The Advocate Magazine, Stand Out strives to find the best in queer and queer-friendly comedy from all across the country, giving comedians national exposure and ending with a live competition for over $2,000 and a feature story in The Advocate.

Submissions start now and end on July 31st. An elimination round between 15 comedians will begin on on August 6th which will continue for 2 weeks before ending on August 20th. Watch clips and read about each comedian, you can vote for your favorite once a day. The 8 comedians who get enough votes to proceed to the live competition will be announced at a viewing party at Sidetrack video bar 3349 N Halsted in Chicago on August 28th. The live performance will be hosted by Zanies Comedy Club at 1548 N Wells in downtown Chicago on Tuesday September 24th, 8:30pm. Both the viewing party and live competition will feature sponsored drinks from Absolut vodka. The live portion will be hosted by OutLoud Chicago creator Adam Guerino and judged by Zanies booker Bert Haas, The Advocate Humor Editor Jami Smith and The Chicago Reader comedy critic Molly Adams.

Stand Out is searching for the most hilarious in queer and queer-friendly comedy, not just the most experienced. From the national exposure of to performing in front of an influential booker, editor and critic, regardless of taking home the hefty cash prize, even participating will be beneficial to any comedian.

Simply submit a youtube link to a clip of between 4 and 6 minutes of continual comedy performance and include a hi res photo and 100-300 word bio to Submission deadline will be July 31st. Please only submit if you are available to come to Chicago September 24th to compete at the live event.

Read on for a list of helpful hints and a timeline for contestants.

Why a 4-6 minute continual comedy performance youtube clip? Because 6 minutes should be plenty of time to shine and you won’t be able to edit your live performance so you shouldn’t edit your clip. We ask for youtube because your video will be embedded on multiple sites (don’t apply if you’re shy.) This is to your benefit though because people can look at your youtube page afterward if they so choose.

Why a 100-300 word bio? Tell us about yourself! But, you know, not your whole life story. Where are you from? How long, if at all, have you been performing? Are you gay, bi, straight, trans? Your bio will be next to your clip and photo so the more concise, the more you will stand out.

Why a hi-res photo? Don’t be alarmed, we are not talking in code. Hi-res just means high resolution because we want to see a big, clear photo of your beautiful self. Notice we didn’t say “headshot.” You don’t need a professional photo, but you are more than welcome to use one if you have it. In other words, we won’t hold it against you if your mom takes your picture. This is a search for talent, not an invite-only contest for professionals.


Submissions: Start now and end July 31st. You’ll receive an email saying we received your materials.

The Elimination Round: 15 comedians will compete via online voting for 8 slots in the live competition. Voting starts on August 6th and ends on August 20th. You can vote once a day and so can your mom.

Viewing Party: On August 28th Absolut vodka and Sidetrack The Video Bar will be hosting the announcement of which comedians will advance to the next round of competition at Sidetrack 3349 N Halsted. Throughout the night, comedian clips will be playing on tvs in the bar and Absolut vodka will be passing sponsored drinks. The 8 contestants who advance to the live competition will be announced by the end of the night.

Live Competition: Tuesday September 24th, Zanies and Outloud Chicago host the live competition starting at 8:30pm at 1548 N Wells hosted by Adam Guerino and judged by Bert Haas, Jami Smith and Molly Adams.


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