Newswire: StandUp NBC is a shortcut to stardom for comedians from diverse backgrounds

For the past 14 years, StandUp NBC has traveled across the U.S. in search of stand-up comedians from what it refers to as “diverse backgrounds” as part of its Talent Infusion Programs. They do so through four open casting calls—this year, they’re being held in Chicago, San Francisco, Atlanta, and Philadelphia—where hopefuls have one minute to present their act to NBC representatives like Karen Horne, who oversees the program.

That may not seem like a lot of time to get your flair for carefully constructed observational storytelling across, but Horne—who’s been a part of StandUp NBC for eight years now, and who judges open calls along with a booker for The Tonight Show—tells The A.V. Club, “we can tell if we want to see more from someone, not only from their material, but how they command the stage. There’s a lot …

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