DISCLAIMER: I sent the Boss the first draft of this column, and she said “It’s too harsh, you love Vinnie Favorito, why would you write such a severe review?” Vinnie is a great stand-up comic, that doesn’t mean he can fix a car or teach others his craft. Besides, how good can good reviews be, if you always write a good review?
I recently attended an $895.00 two-day seminar, to improve speaking skills, and jazz up speeches by adding comedy. It was called “Humor Boot Camp”. I failed to see the need for such an expensive seminar, until I sat through a lunch where Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman gave a speech. I was so bored; I ate my vegetables.
Great speakers and speeches motivate entire countries, from going to the Moon, or going to War. My buddy Roy has always told me, “It’s not what you say; its how you say it.” I never paid attention to him…… I guess it’s the way he said it. My Dad tried speeches to motivate me, “You need a kick in the ass.”
The premise: You’ve got boring speeches that need help. Enter two pros from Boston, Vinnie Favorito and Darren LaCroix
I reviewed Vinnie Favorito a few months ago, he’s performing at O’Shea’s on the Strip, and he is the best stand-up comic I’ve seen in 10 years.
The other half of this seminar team is Darren LaCroix, the 2001 Toastmaster’s World Champion Speaker.
The set up: In this world of hyper capitalism, public speaking is a requirement, good public speaking is a way to further your business, and great public speaking will get you to the top. Or so they say. (With his speaking skills, how did Oscar Goodman get to be Mayor?) Everyone has a business plan; therefore it only makes sense, a stand-up comic and a motivational speaker would produce The Humor Boot Camp seminar to improve speaking skills. You Think?
The Boys emphasized THREE main points to give an entertaining, interesting and enjoyable speech:
1. Material: Have Tried & True Stories, with a premise, a set up, and punch line.
2. Delivery: Polish your delivery and Confidence on Stage.
3. Setting: Be sure you have Good lighting, Good sound, Good Ambiance
Their material was not strong. The workbook didn’t correspond with what they were teaching; even the first page had the wrong days for the classes. Their delivery was confident because much of the material was all about them. Vinnie does two shows a night, so at 8:00 am in the morning he’s needs help, maybe a shower and a shave. Darren was clean and well dressed, but he couldn’t stop re-running videos of his six-year-old speeches. (Anyone want to see old videos of me eating Hot Dogs?) The setting was Vinnie’s showroom, dark, dank, and uncomfortable.
I can remember great teachers who made a difference in my life; probably there are still some, only now teachers mostly whine about their pay. The seminar would be better if these guys concentrate on being teachers, and less about being performers. With practice, they will become better teachers, but they never can whine about their pay.
My ONE point for an enjoyable seminar ……….NO Meeting Without Eating!!! These guys are definitely not Jewish…..NO FOOD. I want Coffee & Danish at 8:00 am in the morning. Lox, Bagels & Cream Cheese would be better, but nothing, only bottles of water.
The punch line, I never go to seminars, and I don’t consider myself part of the real world. For me, I don’t want to know or learn anything new; my brain is like my sock drawer, miss matched, and full.
DISCLAIMER la partie deux: Many of my classmates came to Vegas from all of the country, New York, Florida. To be fair, I asked many of them, did you get your moneys worth, and did you enjoy the seminar? Each one of my classmates said “Yes, absolutely”. So what the hell do I know?
DISCLAIMER la partie trois: DON’T HATE ME VINNIE………I’m your biggest fan. I don’t want to RAG on you, but I know you’re tough, and can take it. Here’s a sports analogy for you: Not all great football players make good coaches.
GO SEE VINNIE’S SHOW
IT’S A MUST SEE
3555 Las Vegas Blvd S
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Two shows 7:30 pm & 9:30 pm
Tuesday – Sunday, Dark Monday
$39.95-$49.95 + tax & fees