Libbie Higgins at Wiseguys | Buzz Blog

Tuesday, April 19, 2022

Libbie Higgins at Wiseguys

St. Louis-based comedian visits Salt Lake City this week

Posted By on April 19, 2022, 9:00 AM

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click to enlarge Libbie Higgins
  • Libbie Higgins
Comedian Chelcie Lynn will play a four-night set at Wiseguys Gateway (194 S. 400 West), with a six-show run from Thursday, April 21 - Sunday, April 24. As of press time, tickets to that Sunday gig are the only ones remaining, the rest having sold out weeks ago. Appearing with the rising performer Lynn, known for her Trailer Trash Tammy persona, is another act who’s gaining attention and praise through the internet.

Libbie Higgins, a St. Louis-based comic, has been no stranger to various internet platforms over the past few years, with a character named Carla becoming a YouTube hit, eventually allowing her to tackle video messages as Carla on the celebrity greetings service Cameo (though she’s currently on hiatus from that gig). She’s on TikTok, too, and has recently added a streaming show, Baby Oopsie, to her resume. Her podcast with fellow St. Louisans Tina Dybal and Randy Cash can be found on multiple platforms, including YouTube.

Booking time for that podcast has become tougher in 2021 and 2022, as Higgins has struck up quite a professional relationship with Lynn. Together, they’ve taken several lengthy tour runs, including a current jaunt including the SLC dates. We caught up with the increasingly-booked, multi-media performer via email recently.

Baby Oopsie. How did this project come together; how did you find yourself involved in it; and where can people see it?
A friend of mine, William Butler, has written and directed for Full Moon Features in the past. He wanted to do a spin off of the Demonic Toys movie and he wanted me to play the main character, Sybill Pittman. I was contacted in the past by William to play a small role in another Full Moon Feature film called Weedjies. He had been a fan of my character Carla, and reached out to me to see if I'd like to play the small role. We have been friends since! The first two parts of Baby Oopsie can be watched on the Full Moon app and Amazon.

Any other solo videos in the works?
I generally get an idea for a video and shoot it right away. I don't like having the idea in my head and not making it. I tend to overthink things if I let it sit in my head for too long. My current staple of videos has me doing food reviews on YouTube. People like to watch me eat and chit-chat to myself.

You've been on Cameo for a bit, but I see that you're off at the moment I'm sending this. How has that platform worked for you? Are fans generally cool? Or is it the kind of gig that has a lot of good and bad, depending on content requests? Is it fun to do and lucrative enough to keep in your project kit?
The biggest reason I have not been on Cameo in the last year is because I don't have a good wig for Carla, and Carla is the person the fans want. When I was doing Cameos on a regular basis, it was pretty good extra income. I loved doing Cameos for people. I'd get some pretty strange requests, but it was mostly for birthdays, anniversaries, etc. The coolest Cameo I did was for Tommy Hilfiger. I was roasting him in the video because I didn't realize it was for THE Tommy Hilfiger. It wasn't until his wife tagged me a month later that I realized I roasted the real Tommy.

It seems as if you've been doing road work with Chelcie Lynn for quite some time. Have you ever counted the dates? And how much more touring do you anticipate with her? What're the positive things about being on the road with another performer for runs of weeks and months?
My favorite thing in the world is going on the road with Chelcie Lynn. So far, we've done about 120 shows across the country. I love traveling with her and the crew because I feel at my most creative when I am with other creative people. I am able to really tap into my creative brain when I am with creative people 24-7. The bits never stop. I anticipate we will be traveling for the next few years, off-and-on. I'd love to go to England, Australia and Canada. Being on the road and performing nearly every night has made me a better comedian. I am writing tags and bits on stage because I don't have to worry about knowing my material and I can be free on stage to vibe with the crowd and my material. I am a better comedian than I was a year ago when I wasn't getting consistent stage time.

For folks not familiar with your sets, what are some basic topics or themes that you explore? And is your set a more-static one, with a tight-X amount of time, or do you allow yourself to roll some new material into your sets over time? What's the ideal way to keep the comfort of an "it's really working" set vs. wanting to keep things fresh and interesting for yourself?
I like to talk about things people, especially women, don't generally talk about in public. I guess I'm considered "blue.” I speak on Facebook prayer chains, fatphobia, kids bothering you in the bathroom, and generally silliness. I don't get too political and I try not to polarize a crowd. I want people to come to a show and have fun and forget about the BS of their daily life. Chelcie's fanbase is hardcore. Many of the clubs say that they've never heard a louder crowd than the crowds at our shows. My set is generally 20 minutes. It's the same basic skeleton of a set, but I'm always adding tags or doing crowd work that changes with each show. My goal for this tour is to write more while on my off time. I need to roll out some new material to keep my set fresh. I have terrible stage fright, so it's easiest for me to do the set I know. But if a crowd is being so supportive and cheering me on, I feel more comfortable to add new things or do more crowd work.

It looks as if you'll be in SLC for four nights, while a lot of your other dates are one-night stands. Is it a pleasure to be able to stretch your legs a bit in a town? Do you have some cities that offered you a pretty good sense of what they were in even a quick visit? Any town that, for whatever reason, just seems to have a kinship to the material of the two of you?
I love when we have a few days in a city to check things out. We love going to new restaurants and checking out the local "must see" sights. Our schedules change quickly depending on how tired we are, how much laundry we need to do, or if the RV breaks down. (This year we ditched the RV and Chelcie got a Suburban and a trailer. The RV was nice while it lasted but it left us stranded one too many times.)
My favorite city was Oklahoma City. We went and played bingo a few times at a local bingo hall and we are thinking of adding it to our schedules for other cities. Every city we have been to, though, has always been good to us. I can't complain at all.

Would you mind talking about leaving a day job behind to go full-tilt into comedy? What were the pros/cons on your decision-making list? What's been the best thing about the move? And is there anything you miss about a more rooted homelife?
I left my job of 22 years as a special education paraprofessional last March. I was terrified of leaving because I had the security of that paycheck for 22 years, and I wasn't sure where my income was going to come from, apart from the touring money. The pros for me: At 47, the job was becoming too physically difficult for me. My goal in comedy was to eventually quit my job and hit the road, and not having that teacher paycheck was going to force me to grow more and seek other comedy jobs. The only con for me was that I wouldn't have the for-sure paycheck coming in every two weeks. The best thing about leaving my job is that it’s shown me that I am more capable than I ever realized. I have never been happier in my life. People say I'm glowing and I believe it's because I am truly doing what I'm meant to do. The only other thing I miss about the more-rooted homelife is seeing my sister and my cats. I don't think the cats miss me, though. CW

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