A chance meeting with an event promoter has led to three performances at the Leicester Comedy Festival for a De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) graduate.
Jurgen Strack will be on stage as the opening act of a series of three shows featuring some of the world’s top touring comedians.
Jurgen was approached by organisers Caustic Comedy Events, based in The Netherlands, after meeting them at the International Comedy Conference in London about six years ago.
He kept in touch with the promoters and impressed them with his plans to perform English-speaking comedy across the world.
Jurgen said: “We kept in touch and it has led to three gigs in three weeks at the Comedy Festival.
“These gigs are going to be a breath of fresh air. People will be treated to a real mixed bill, with some of the hottest acts around.
“It just shows what networking can achieve and you never quite know when your next big break will be.
“I’m very much looking forward to performing at the festival. It’s a great event that is getting bigger and better each year.”
Find out how DMU is involved in the Leicester Comedy Festival
Visit the exhibition celebrating 25 years of laughter
DMU students helping to run the show at Leicester Comedy Festival
Jurgen, who graduated from DMU in 1995 with a degree in European Business Studies, recalls getting lots of laughs when he played Dr Scott in the Rocky Horror Show at The Y Theatre during his student days.
This inspired him to enrol on a 10-week stand-up course in 2007 called ‘So you think you’re funny?’ and he quickly became hooked on stand-up comedy.
He said: “It was the first time I’d ever stood on stage on my own and said something into a microphone.
“It was completely new to me but I really loved it. I made it through the course and I ended up with 10 minutes of my own original material.”
German-born Jurgen then took his material to open mic nights up and down the country, using his career in sales to help him win over stand-up comedy crowds.
Known as ‘Herman the German’ to fans, his act focuses on the trials and tribulations of ‘life as a German living in Britain’ with plenty of topical talk about Brexit.
Jurgen, who lives in Leicester, said: “I find comedy a wonderful experience. I’ve always kept going with the stand-up in one way, shape or form and it will always remain part of me.
“Making people laugh feels so good. They say laughter is the best medicine and that’s very true, I find it a very positive experience.”
He added: “But with comedy, you never know what to expect and things don’t always go to plan. No gig is ever the same, which keeps you on your toes.”
Jurgen continues to combine his comedy with his day job as a Business Development Manager and his family life with wife and three children.
This will be the 5th year he has performed at the Leicester Comedy Festival and he continues to gig about once a month at venues across the country.
But it is his dream to ‘go pro’ and become a full-time comedian. He also hopes to run comedy workshops for DMU students in the future.
See Jurgen at Wygston’s House at the Live Stand-up Comedy Shows on 9, 16 and 25 February at 10pm. Jurgen will be the opening act and other comedians will include Rahul Kohli, Glenn Wool and Pete Johansson. Entry is £8.50.
For tickets visit the Leicester Comedy Festival website.
DMU is the Higher Education Partner of the Leicester Comedy Festival, which has been cited as ‘one of the best comedy festivals in the world’ by The Guardian.
Posted on Thursday 8th February 2018