Mini Q+A with Drae Campbell

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inDrae has an eclectic career as an EMCEE, comedian, director, actor, storyteller and all around entertainer. Drae received a BFA in Theater from the University of The Arts in Philadelphia. Drae has appeared on many stages and screens all over but mostly in New York City. Drae hosts and curates a live monthly show called TELL. TELL is a queer storytelling show that happens every month at The Bureau Of General Services Queer Division and is now a Podcast. Follow Drae here!


Favorite response to a heckler or troll?

“We’re not a monolith.”

Describe your worst gig.

I was working at Sesame Place theme park hosting a ‘Chromakey’ show. One of the little kids who volunteered to come on stage to participate got her hair tangled in the wheels of a little go kart prop. I panicked and started cracking jokes about “untangling this hairy situation.” She started crying. The dad had to come on stage and pull her hair out of the wheels. Eventually we all got through it. I had to do the same shows over and over all day long when I worked there and it was actually a good exercise for figuring out how to have fun and stay present and hit marks.

On your deathbed, what transcendent advice would you croak at a young comedian?

Burn it to the ground.

What’s your first impulse when someone says “women aren’t funny”?

To pull a coin out of their ear and say, “but what about THIS”!

When you were coming up in comedy, what helped you stick with it?

I actually wanted to distance myself a bit from the stand up world because everyone seemed so depressed and I didn’t want to be a part of it. I focused mainly on my acting career. I started doing stand up again because the culture around it on and off stage started to change a little. It’s more diverse and there are less rape jokes. The format has expanded and that’s exciting to me.

Best comedy advice you ever got?

Do as many shows as you can a week. Learn how to read the room.

Worst comedy advice you ever got?

If someone asks you to take off your clothes, you take off your clothes.

Favorite response to “What’s it like to be a woman in comedy”?

Same thing it’s like to be a woman anywhere. Dangerous.

How has being funny helped you in your offstage life, either recently or when you were younger?

Real actual talk: I’ve had a lot of trauma. Laughter and jokes are the primary ways I’ve been able to process and survive. Also, ladies seem to enjoy laughing so, that works out nice for me. Cuz I date ladies.

What advice do you have for how to level up from open mics + bringers to actual SPOT-spots?

Observe and ask questions. Find out who knows who and who runs what. Off stage, lean into communicating without trying to be funny necessarily . Always ask — even if you think someone is a big shot. The worst that can happen is they say no. Connecting with people is key. Be kind to folks. Always. Be considerate and timely, but don’t cheat yourself. If you feels someone is being shady or shitty, let them know and let others know. Go with your gut.

Was there one person who inspired you to become a comedian?

My mom. Making her laugh was fun. Her laughter was infectious and it brought us together as a family.

What single word always cracks you up?

Muffin.


Drae has an eclectic career as an EMCEE, comedian, director, actor, storyteller and all around entertainer. Drae received a BFA in Theater from the University of The Arts in Philadelphia. Drae has appeared on many stages and screens all over but mostly in New York City. Drae hosts and curates a live monthly show called TELL. TELL is a queer storytelling show that happens every month at The Bureau Of General Services Queer Division and is now a Podcast. Follow Drae here!