Born standing up: a comic's life

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The Emmy and Grammy Award-winner's candid, spectacularly amusing memoir of his years in stand-up

In the mid-seventies, Steve Martin exploded onto the comedy scene. By 1978 he was the biggest concert draw in the history of stand-up. In 1981 he quit forever. Born Standing Up is, in his own words, the story of "why I did stand-up and why I walked away."

At age ten Martin started his career at Disneyland, selling guidebooks in the newly opened theme park. In the decade that followed, he worked in the Disney magic shop and the Bird Cage Theatre at Knott's Berry Farm, performing his first magic/comedy act a dozen times a week. The story of these years, during which he practiced and honed his craft, is moving and revelatory.

Martin illuminates the sacrifice, discipline and originality that made him an icon and informs his work to this day. To be this good, to perform so frequently, was isolating and lonely. It took Martin decades to reconnect with his parents and sister, and he tells that story with great tenderness. Martin also paints a portrait of his times: the era of free love and protests against the war in Vietnam, the heady irreverence of The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour in the late sixties, and the transformative new voice of Saturday Night Live in the seventies.

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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID d8facf34-c00e-e5d5-4b96-b01b03074a1f
Grouping Title born standing up a comics life
Grouping Author martin steve
Grouping Category book
Last Grouping Update 2018-09-18 23:43:40PM
Last Indexed 2018-09-19 00:34:42AM

Solr Details

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author Martin, Steve, 1945-
author_display Martin, Steve
available_at_school Hillwood High
collection_school Biography
detailed_location_school Hillwood High - Teen Biography
display_description Steve Martin reflects on his early career as a stand-up comic, how he walked away from it to become a writer for "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour," his mentors and complex relationship with his parents and sister, and the work and dedication it took to become one of the world's greatest comedians.
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primary_isbn 9781416553649
publishDate 2007, 2008
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subject_facet Entertainers -- United States -- Biography, Martin, Steve -- 1945-, Martin, Steve, -- 1945-
title_display Born standing up : a comic's life
title_full Born Standing Up A Comic's Life, Born standing up : a comic's life / Steve Martin, Born standing up : a comic's life / by Steve Martin, Born standing up [sound recording] : a comic's life / by Steve Martin
title_short Born standing up :
title_sub a comic's life
topic_facet Biography & Autobiography, Entertainers, Martin, Steve, Nonfiction, Performing Arts