Chase Mcphie & Val Douroux

valchase.png

Chase’s responses to Val’s questions:

At what moment did you know you wanted to do standup?

I have always loved trying to make people laugh. As a kid I loved watching Jim Carrey in the Ace Ventura movies. He would make me laugh so hard and I wanted to be like him. I would imitate him and act out scenes form the movies trying to make kids at school and my sisters laugh. But the first time I knew I at least wanted to try Stand Up I was almost 19 years old listening to a Ron White Cd on a road trip. I wanted to get on a stage and tell stories the way he did that made people laugh. But by the time I knew I would actually try stand up was after having an opportunity to meet and speak briefly with one of my comedian heroes named Christopher Titus. I was 27.

What’s the hardest thing you’ve had to process, and then turned into a joke?

The hardest thing that I have had to process and been able to turn it into a joke is a tough one. But if I had to choose, I would probably be when I got arrested in 2012 for an unpaid ticket. That was really a tough thing to go through even though it wasn’t for anything serious, being in the jail cell, knowing how something so simple had turned into such a big deal. It was a real source of embarrassment for me and it took a good long while for me to laugh at it. But over time I turned that story into a 5-minute bit that ends with a poem that sums up the whole experience.

What joke are you most proud of, and what joke are you least proud of?

I think the Joke I am most proud of is my joke about being too young to be married and using a Spice Girls lyric by pointing out if someone is too young to “tell you what they want, what they really really want”  they are too young to get married. The first time I told that joke at an open mic at Wiseguys in Salt Lake City the crowd erupted. It was the first time I felt like I could actually do this and could really earn a spot on the stage. The joke I am least proud of is one that I wont repeat. But in 2016 I used a racial slur going for shock value. Sadly, the joke worked well and got a big response. But it didn’t feel right. I made the appropriate apologies to those it offended and hurt, and I adjusted the joke accordingly.

What’s the best and worst experience you’ve had as a standup comedian?

My best experience as a stand up is any time I have said something that has a huge laugh. Knowing that I have been able to take a thought or and idea I have and find the correct wording and timing for it, say it into a microphone and hear the crowd, big or small, get that gut punching laugh all at the same time is the best feeling in the world! I was opening up for an amazing comedian named Rodney Norman in 2019. I had an idea for a joke that I had never said before. The thought came to me about 2 hours before the show. As soon as I hit the last punchline the room exploded! It was an audience of about 90 people, but the response from the crowd hit me like a tidal wave. My worst experience as a comedian is any of the number of times I think I am about to go on stage and destroy a crowd and the spotlight hits me and I blank and can’t remember a single word I was supposed to say. The silence and the light and the anxiety is the worst. Its happened before and it will happen again. I just try to roll with it.

What’s the #1 advice you’d give anyone in life?

Learn to laugh. At whatever drama or hardship you face. Find a way to either laugh at the pain, or allow yourself time to find something to laugh at. Laughing has a way of forcing our anxious minds to be present. It lightens weight and tames fear. Laughing can make a bad day good and a good day great. It’s the most powerful tool we have built into our systems as humans. My older sister wrote a poem after my mom passed away and she used a line that described how my mom lived her life perfectly and I have tried to apply it. “I walked through life with my head held high, I loved to laugh, and I was never afraid to cry….”

Where can we find your work, and what can we look forward to seeing from you?  

With the Pandemic going on and the rest of the craziness in the world, shows are far and few between understandable so. I have been fortunate enough to be part of several Electric Comedy Night shows which are fantastic. I Believe I will be appearing on a show of theirs on November 28th at the Electric Theater in St. George Utah. But in the meantime, I host and produce a Podcast called Dramatic Comedy that can be found on itunes, google, spotify, and several other platforms. The Podcast is centralized around finding ways to laugh at whatever circumstances life throws at us. I have interviewed comedians, former polygamists, members of the LBGTQ community, and several others all discussing what role a sense of humor has played in their lives.

Val’s responses to Chase’s questions:

What made you want to try stand up?

That’s a great question. 

I love laughing and I love making people laugh. I grew up watching Stand-Up and In Living Color. I loved watching Robyn Williams, Chris Rock, Jim Carey, and Dave Chapelle. As I was watching more of the newer Stand-Up Comedians, I thought I'd try it. What could it hurt?! 

What was your first experience on stage like?

My first experience was  scary! 

On the way to the venue, I almost crashed my car. I was looking for any reason to get out of performing. I was scared. I was nervous. I was wondering: Why do I even think I'm funny? Why does it matter? I finally parked and signed-up. Every person called, I couldn't even hear their jokes. My heart was pounding. They finally called my name, and I died. I floated through the time telling jokes about myself. Jokes about my family, and just remember quoting my dad say: “I’ll punch a bitch in the face for a Klondike bar.” 

When it was all said and done it felt like I accomplished something.

Even if it was just a personal hurdle, 

It was major. 

If you could interview one comedian who would it be?

Robyn Williams

I want to tell him how much he means to me. 

What is your ultimate goal to accomplish in comedy?

The ultimate goal is to make edifying, hilarious, multi-million dollar films and tv shows. Specifically, with NBC & Universal Studios. For all the trauma, I want to capitalize on my comedic experiences. I want to tell stories that laugh and life’s hardships.

In the meantime, I’d love to write and perform a critically and commercially successful one hour stand up special, and build a healthy fan/friend-base.

What advice would you give to someone about to go to their first open mic?

It’s not America’s Got Talent. It’s just an Open Mic. Utilize it as an opportunity to share your voice, and strengthen your writing/delivery. There’s no pressure to be funny, but you better be. Go into it with polish and preparation. Give it your all, and when you're done, stay to appreciate the time and talents of others.

Where can we see you or find your work?

Valdouroux.com & electriccomedynight.com (Producer) 

Keep up with my everyday life @valdouroux on Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. 

Read My Life Story “Bitch Need Jesus” on Amazon Kindle or order the paperback copy now.