How much money does a comedian earn?

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It depends I have been working in stand-up comedy for about three years now. My main focus is still on my obtaining my college degree, but I am in constant contact with working comics. The answer to this question is... it depends.No one starts out making great money. You have to "pay your dues" in stand-up, which means spending a lot of your own money trying to get exposure and gigs on your own. You will spend time and money driving, waiting, eating, and schmoozing in your early days. Entering contests and taking guest spots are a great way to get time in front of a non open-mic audience. Some of these gigs even pay.Hosting or emcee work is your first pay level, usually between $10 and $50 per show. Not bad considering that you only work for 10 minutes. However, if it costs you $30 in gas and tolls to get to your $20 gig...well, you do the math.Comedy clubs pay between $200 and $1000 (or more) per show for features and headliners. These are usually experienced people who have already done all the work mentioned above. The ones who want to get paid will hustle to get more gigs and exposure, which will increase the amount they can make (provided they don't suck). The goal is to get "discovered" like Dane Cook or Dave Chappelle. Your price can then skyrocket accordingly.For most, the best way to make money in comedy is working the college scene. Colleges have a lot of disposable income for entertainment, and they are happy to blow it on comedians. You can make $2000-$4000 (or more) for a show on a college campus. The competition is out there, but there are so many schools that you should be able to always work if you have any talent.This answer is not all inclusive, and there are certain things I have ignored due to time constraints. Just remember, the main factors that will contribute to your income level are your talent, experience, and willingness to work. Surprisingly, the first two always improve if you really work on the last one. "Pay your dues", get funny, and get out there if you want to get paid!As the writer before me said, "it depends" that truly is the real answer. The cool thing is though, that if you become a professional your yearly salary is from only $10,000 a year to a hunking chunk of $10,000,000 a year.
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