We had the good fortune of connecting with Roxy Merari and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Roxy, what do you attribute your success to?
I think my success has to do with repetition and refinement. I keep doing the same things but each time I look at what is working and what isn’t and I just keep repeating the things that work and cutting out the things that don’t. I use mentors and I am not afraid to ask questions. My brand is built one fan at a time. People come and see the show and I think it is apparent that my soul is in it and people relate to that. Finding a partner to produce my show with was instrumental. Having someone to collaborate with and, more importantly, share the workload with really gave me some confidence and increased my efficiency.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I came to comedy later in life, after a life time of loving comedy. I have always had an artistic streak but it never occurred to me to go to an open mic. Finally a friend took me to an open mic and so it began. I got where I am today by doing it over and over and over going up and getting on stage time after time even when I did not want to, even when I was scared or tired or did not know what to say or was sick of my own jokes. Pretty early on I kept setting new comedy goals for myself, like real thought about how I wanted to feel onstage and how I might achieve that. and what kind of shows I wanted to be on. Pretty soon I decided that I needed to start a show of my own to help me gain experience quicker. I approached my favorite venue and they agreed to let me try it. My show started as just comics only with almost no audience and slowly but surely I built up the clientele until we consistently had audience every week. Something I have learned along the way is that as long as I have done my best, I can let go of the results.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
When friends come in from out of town, I like to wow them with the natural beauty Tucson has to offer. Sabino Canyon is a wonderful place to take a walk or hike and just get surrounded. I also love to take my friends horseback riding. There are a number of good outfitters around town and even right in town, Hacienda del Sol has lovely trails that do not feel like you are in someone’s back yard, plus they have a great happy hour in the hotel. It is a beautiful, clandestine spot. If I have more time, I will take friends to Colossal Caves. The tour is unusual and there is also horseback riding available,. The surrounding trails are some of the best horse rides I have been on. My favorite place to eat lunch is probably Yoshimatsu. It is Japanese comfort food and the menu always includes specials and seasonal items. I hope that doesn’t make any Tucsonans angry. I know I am supposed to be talking about Mexican food, and everyone knows I consume my share. I love Mexican soups so I like to try them wherever I go. Tania’s is one of my go-to’s., and The Little One Cafe. My show is on 4th Avenue at the Surly Wench Pub, so I of course take out of towners there. That whole area is so busy and fun. If friends want to buy souvenirs, I take them to Pop Cycle for local artists’ Arizona themed wares and Pop Cycles signature vintage clothes. Often I will do guest sets on a Friday or Saturday at Laff’s so it is fun to bring my friends there to see where it all started for me. I love live shows so concerts at the Rialto are a must and The Congress Hotel is perfect for a nightcap after.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Lisa Landry – My comedy mentor Steph and Jasmine – Owners of the Surly
Wench Pub who let me launch my show there
Clayton Braasch – my co-producer
My mother Renee, my sister Vivian, and my daughter Valentina. who each inspire and encourage me and /or babysit so I can go tell jokes at night
Twitter: Comedy at the Wench
Facebook: Roxy Merari and Comedy at the Wench
Other: Radio Host, KMKR 99.9 “Is this on?” 3rd Wednesdays 9 – 11 PM