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One of the first things that new comedians run into when they are trying to get comedy club open mic stage time is what is known as a bringer show.
A comedy club bringer show is a show that in order for a new comedian to get open mic stage time, they have to bring a certain number of friends to the show.
This is good for the comedy club because they are able to get butts in the seats and sell food and drinks for a show that is essentially not otherwise marketable.