Whether on stage or off, Jiwan Kapp is a funny guy

Kapp is hoping to win the Ultimate Comedy Competition at the Comedy Zone.

Whether on stage or off, Jiwan Kapp is a funny guy
May 27
11:13 2021

Being a stand-up comedian is not for the faint of heart. Getting up in front of scores of people to entertain them takes guts. Greensboro native, Jiwan Kapp, has the talent to entertain on stage and is hoping to get his turn at the big stage.

Kapp has been in the comedy game for a decade. Although comedy seems to have been his calling from a young age, Kapp didn’t make his debut on stage until he hit the stage at the Greensboro Comedy Zone and has been there ever since.

“I enjoyed making people laugh; naturally I was just a silly kid,” Kapp said about his love for comedy. “I knew I wanted to do stand-up comedy, but realistically I thought it was a farfetched dream, something I put in the back of my head.  

“As I grew up, I would crack jokes and make everyone laugh. I just said, ‘You know what, I am really going to do it,’ after this lady, Ms. Evette, told me that I was going to make a lot of money making people laugh.”

Kapp only told a select few individuals about his decision to take up comedy. He said he wrote out an entire set a few days prior to his performance, but once on stage, he totally forgot everything he wrote and just freestyled his set. Everyone enjoyed the show and he was hooked, he said.

“It’s funny because the week prior, I showed up and it was so many people there, I walked out,” he said about his first attempt. “I was much more amazed at the local comedians, because I had only seen people on TV do it. “

Kapp continued to come back weekly to the Comedy Zone and brought friends to support him, which made him a little more comfortable on stage. Unfortunately, on the day he brought his parents to watch his set, things didn’t quite work out the way he wanted.

“I was funny and week after week I had a lot of supporters come out, so I think that’s why I was that much funnier,” said Kapp. “The week that I invited my parents to the Idiot Box comedy club, I bombed the first time. I was not funny and that kind of put me down the whole week. I went on Career Builder looking for other jobs.”

Kapp says he wanted to give up comedy after he bombed on stage, but that feeling quickly left once he performed again. He says he tells all young comedians that they will have that feeling after a failed performance until they hit the stage once again.

Being open and honest with his audience is the preferred method for Kapp. He prefers to blend his personal life into his comedy to connect more with his audience.

“I like to say that I am very transparent; I talk about my life,” he continued. “A lot of stuff I say on stage is real.”

An example of his transparency on stage, Kapp likes to tell is how he was fired from Dollar Tree for repeatedly asking for price checks on items. He stated he did not think some of the items were really a dollar, so he continued to call to confirm.

To enhance his skill on stage, Kapp studied some of the comedians from the past. He says that several local comedians have inspired him as well.

“When I first started really getting into the craft, I was studying Paul Mooney, Dick Gregory, Richard Pryor and Rickey Smiley,” he stated. “Rickey Smiley was like my favorite, because I used to do prank phone calls, so I would just sit and laugh at Rickey Smiley and Roy Wood prank phone calls all night when I was in middle and high school.

“Now, more of the local scene is my inspiration. People like Anthony Hughes, Austin Cooke and my mentor Nick Lewis, who has been doing comedy for 28 years, and that’s who I feature for, he’s been a great asset to my comedy career. Chico Bean was also one of my first mentors when I first started doing comedy. He was the host of the Comedy Zone when I started going up every Thursday.”

Beyond wanting to become a comedian, Kapp had visions of using his platform to help others in their journey. He has a production company called the G.O.O.F. (Giving Others Opportunities First) Camp that gives up-and-coming comics a chance to live out their dreams.

“I knew what my purpose was, which was creating opportunities and providing joy,” he went on to say. “I started up my production company in 2014 and that’s when I started to take control of my comedy career.

“I like to say that I am the gate opener. I open up the gate for a lot of people to show them the true purpose of going out here and creating the life that you want.”

Kapp says education was really important in his household growing up, so when he chose to drop out of college to pursue his comedic dreams, he knew he had to make it work. He learned the business side of the industry early on and enjoys the grind of going on tour.

“I like to say the hardest part is getting to the shows, especially since all of my tours are self-financed tours,” he said.  

Kapp is currently in the Ultimate Comedy Competition at the Comedy Box. He has entered the competition for the last seven years and this is the first time he has advanced past the first round of the competition. He is documenting the entire process for another project he has planned later this year.

Because his tours are all self-financed, Kapp needs sponsors to support his efforts. He says he is thankful to all of the people and organizations that have contributed to his comedy dream over the years.

For Kapp, he doesn’t have a switch that he turns on and off when it comes to being on and off stage. He says his personality is jovial and fun, so he is the same way on the stage as he is off.

“This is me,” he said about his personality. “Comedy is life, you just have to laugh.”

Kapp stated he did not write his jokes down, because he feels his set is more authentic if he does his set unscripted. Currently, he is attempting to write down his jokes for the competition due to the high skill level of his competitors.

“Any time I was writing my jokes when I first started wasn’t natural to me and I am a naturally funny guy,” he said. “For this competition, it’s some funny people, so I have to start writing some jokes and really get in my bag.  

“I like to say that I’m the laziest hardest working comedian and a lot of people in the industry know that. If you ask some of the stars like Ryan Davis, they know Jiwan is the funniest person, but if I wrote my jokes, I would be a monster.”

An upcoming project for Kapp is called “Paper Ducks” and it’s something he has been working on for over a year. It is scheduled to drop this fall. For more information on Kapp, please visit or on social media at Knowkappkomedy (Instagram) or at Jiwan Kapp on Facebook.

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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