Beyond the comedy clubs and the theaters lies a gig circuit where only stand-up comedians dare to go. A small town bar, a youth rec centre, a fish restaurant, anywhere where a microphone and maybe a little spotlight can be hooked up, you will find comedy nights. There, you’ll run in beginners and veterans who can’t get further ahead, but also you’ll see top of the line comedians who can’t help but to come back for more.
And when a Dutch comedian tells about the time he performed in a bar in Herpes-upon-Shitcreek for two drinks, where he was yelled off stage by ten drunks, there’s a good chance he will describe that gig as a ‘Kottmann’.
Hans Kottmann used to run thé agency in the Netherlands where you went to get a lot of comedy for very little money. He is also the only man to be permanently banned from all three Amsterdam comedy clubs. He is the protagonist in the most outrageous comedy anecdotes. Stories about booze, women and in the end, usually, the police.
Comedians Edo Berger and Jeroen Pater interviewed a heap of their colleagues and asked them to talk about the bottom of the comedy barrel, led by ther Kottmann-stories. Hans Kottmann tels his own version of them, in which without exception he plays the part of misunderstood genius and tragic hero. The central question: ‘If it’s really hell out there, then why do you keep going on stage in Herpes-upon-Shitcreek?’