More to the Story: Quinten Lamar

Taylor Harrington 4/9/2021 10:41am EST

We sat down with Michigan native and comedian Quinten Lamar. Quinten lives in New York City now and says,

“Growing up as the only Black kid, humor was a way for me to deal with being different and being the only one.”

Quinten’s parents were always watching standup comedy, and he fell in love with the art at a young age and knew that the stage is where he belongs. The first time Quinten got on stage was in the fourth grade when being one of the only Black kids in the school, he was made to play the part of Martin Luther King Jr., and was actually assassinated on stage in front of his classmates and their parents. We talked about how wild that is and how much things have changed since the 90s.

“My parents, they were surprised, but because it was giving any kind of space for it in that school they were okay with it, but if I was a parent now I can’t imagine. It couldn’t be done now, even for the gravity of the situation. That was my first time on stage. Getting shot dead on stage. That was the MidWest in the 90s.”

Quinten left college and traveled through Europe and explored the comedy scene overseas. The first time he got on stage as a comedian was at a small venue in Paris. When he got back to the states, he moved to New York City, and fell in love with improv. He did some work with Upright Citizen Brigade, then branched off and started doing his own standup comedy shows. Quinten says that improv changes the way your mind works and can really help you in all facets of not only performing, but life.

Quinten has a few podcasts, including TableVerse Podcast which is all improv, KnowThat: a Real Housewives Podcast that he started with his husband Donny Hadfield-Smith and friend Anthony Casella, and This is Gonna Be Good, where he interviews people such as city council members and experts about things in media and pop-culture with his comedian friend Carol Scudder.

His favorite place to perform is Stand Up New York, where he first performed in New York City and received great advice from Dave Chappelle.

“The thing I love about stand up is that really big important people in the business meet really small people. I got to sit back and watch behind the stage how a person like Dave Chappelle works. He was very nice and gave some really great advice to me. He told me that I needed to break the tension in the way I talk about things. I talk about heavy subjects like slavery, and he is the master of telling very heavy, inappropriate jokes. He said I needed to watch the timing of that and give the audience time and permission to laugh.”

Before performing, Quinten makes sure to have his set down, and can’t wait to get back on the New York City stage scene soon. Follow Quinten on Instagram at @swolemite, and subscribe to TableVerse, KnowThat, and This is Gonna Be Good everywhere podcasts are available.

Subscribe to our YouTube Channel to watch Quinten’s interview and hear his whole story on Spotify, iTunes, Stitcher, and Google Podcasts.

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