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  • Writer's pictureLa Nouvelle Orléanaise

Elie Oury, the man who laughs


Elie Oury

I discovered the stand-up comedy shows organised by the Orléans Comedy association by word of mouth and decided to attend one on a Wednesday evening in September 2022.

I had just taken up my new position as a teacher at a Training Centre in Orléans and I experienced the joys of working in a city again. While I was leaving the stand-up comedy show, I realised how happy I was because I had laughed. A lot. Then, I had the opportunity to attend other shows several times. Their quality led me to the thought of putting Elie Oury, the association’s founder, into the spotlight.

The weekly Wednesday stand-up comedy shows and the monthly Fridays are a true opportunity for the people of Orléans, for they can discover artists, whether they are men or women, from Paris or elsewhere, for a good price. The Orléans comedy association is a little nugget offering culture, diversity and entertainment to the city. I had the chance to meet Elie on 23 February and ask him a few questions. In addition, I gathered testimony from spectators attending a show at La Java Pop on 15 March.


LNO: Could you introduce yourself and explain where your taste for humour comes from?

Elie: My name is Elie Oury; I am 29 years old and I am from Baule, in the Loiret1. To start with, I think that my taste for humour comes from the family environment in which I grew up: my dad is extremely funny; I remember that he owned video tapes of Elie Kakou. As for my mother, whose family is of Jewish origin, she told a lot of stories in relation to religion. In the Jewish culture, tales are indeed very important. Later, I explored the world of Gad Elmaleh, Florence Foresti, Frank Dubosc, the “Petites Annonces d’Elie” by Elie Semoun… I literally immersed myself in this world, so much so that humour became a weapon to take care of myself. A bit later, I had the chance to spend a year in Australia in order to practice my English more. Then, I opened up to the American and Quebec’s Anglophone stand-up comedy shows.


LNO: What path did you choose to follow afterwards?

Elie: When it was about time to choose a course, I decided to go to a business school which opened the doors to a famous television channel in Paris. It was the choice of reason, for I quickly became disillusioned with this world in which money is at the centre of everything. This led me to wonder about my deepest aspirations. As a consequence, I quit my job and started performing in stand-up comedy shows, through the guidance of Merwane Benlazar and Shirley Souagnon who, at that time, performed at the Bordel, a Parisian stand-up comedy stage. For two years, I earned my stripes, manoeuvring between the stand-up performances and a day job in the sales industry. Once a month, I also organised stand-up comedy shows with some friends at La Java Pop bar, in Orléans – a factor to be of importance later.

In 2020, I was hoping that I could devote myself to stand-up comedy, but COVID undermined my plans… Also, some family members got health troubles, which drove me to come back to live in the Loiret department in March 2021. From September 2021 onwards, I started performing again at La Java Pop, going from a monthly show to a weekly one. I had a difficult start not only because of the consequences of COVID but also because the audience here in Orléans barely knew me after all.

But soon enough – from November 2021 onwards – the situation improved: the tickets were sold out every Wednesday. This encouraged me to found my association in December 2021.


LNO: What is your professional status?

Elie: I have just had the status of temporary show business worker because I am paid fairly enough to claim it: I earn money from La Java Pop; I teach stand-up comedy techniques every Monday from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. at the Zigotastiques theatre school, in Orléans; and I organise shows at Le Dropkick bar every first Friday of the month. Humorists who very often are my friends come and perform there.


LNO: What is the difference between the shows at La Java Pop and the shows at Le Dropkick?

Elie: At La Java Pop, the entrance is free because the humorists sometimes tell the jokes for the first time. At Le Dropkick, there is an entry charge (from €12 to €15 a ticket), for the artists perform a show that they have written and tried before. However, regardless of the type of performance the audience is attending, I am always very anxious to have men and women with different views in the programme. It is important for the audience to be able to identify themselves with one view or another.

Elie, Fahd, Sami & Salem, on 15 March

LNO: What do you like most about your work?

Elie: What I like most is being on stage and making people laugh with romanticised anecdotes about my life. I wish I could be on stage more.


LNO: What are your future plans?

Elie: In the short term, I would like the stand-up comedy shows to have more visibility. I envisage meeting members of the Orléans City Hall to promote them.

In the medium term, I would like to open a comedy club here in Orléans. This club would be both a bar and an auditorium.

But my primary goal is to make a career in stand-up comedy so that I can perform in Orléans, Paris and elsewhere. I am trying to build a network of contacts around me because when the time comes, I want some people to be able to take over the association and the comedy club.


LNO: Where can we find you?

Elie: I have a website on which reservations can be made: https://www.orleanscomedy.fr; I am on Instagram and Facebook; and you can also attend a show every Wednesday at La Java Pop and every first Friday of the month at Le Dropkick. Come and have fun with us!

 

15 March, at La Java Pop


Charles & Noémie

Charles: « I loved it! It was my first experience. What I appreciated most, was the bond between the audience and the artists. »

Noémie: « It was my first experience too. I come from Marseille, a dynamic city. I had never heard of such events in Orléans. The humorists were good and the audience was receptive. It was fun! »



La Nouvelle Orléanaise


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