Bigger, Bolder, Wilder! What a great example of dreams really do come true! Courtney Bledsoe also known as (Courtney Bee) grew up in Detroit with one of the largest personalities in any room she stepped in! As a youth she enjoyed the typical things like skating, dancing, karaoke, traveling and hanging with her friends, but with her magnetic and energetic spirit she knew early on that she would need a special outlet to express herself. Her mother reared her to have a big personality because she wanted her to be able to walk into any room and dominate it and after jumping a few hurdles and finding her niche, she’s doing just that! While attending college at FAMU, Bledsoe was studying journalism where she developed a love for writing and gained the nickname, “The Next Oprah”!
She soon ventured into hosting events around campus entertaining crowds and making it her duty to put smiles on their faces. It took some time but she realized being on the big screen and on the big stage is where she truly belongs! She didn’t know quite yet how she would make her dream television debut come true, but she was going to keep entertaining and bringing laughter to many around the world until it did! After college she moved to New York where she performed at stand up comedy gigs and her comedic mentors took her under their wings. Years began to pass and Bledsoe just wanted to see progression. In 2019, she told God she wanted a reoccurring role on a sitcom, in 2020, the pandemic hit, so it hindered a few opportunities, but in 2021 opportunities picked back up and it was back to business, but still no sitcom role and still no big stage. She decided to try something a little different and self-taped for a Geico commercial, but she kept hearing God’s voice saying ‘BIGGER! She took a leap of faith and never looked back, many doors began to open and one of those doors was the pathway to the big stage of MTV’s Wild N’ Out! This opportunity proved to the 35-year-old entertainer that hard work, pays off no matter the route nor the length it may take to get there! If you love good energy along with great laughs stay tuned because Courtney Bee is just getting started! Watch her dream unfold on the new season of Wild N’ Out on June 21 on VH1!
HERE IS JUST A PIECE OF HER JOURNEY:
Q)When did you first realize that you had a really great sense of humor and that you wanted to pursue a career in comedy?
A) I met a man in college, I hate I can’t remember his name but we met and he said “you need to be on stages”. So he booked me gigs while I was at FAMU. At the time I didn’t consider myself a comedian but a host. I wasn’t making money or anything I was just having fun entertaining people. I remember hosting a show for 5 people, they didn’t laugh or even look as though they were enjoying themselves. It was then that I told myself that it was my responsibility to make the audience laugh and ensure that they were enjoying themselves. When I moved to NY, I found myself unemployed in 2014 and that was the first time I’d gone to a comedy club and performed actual jokes that I’d written. It went well and I’ve been writing jokes and performing ever since!
Q)Do comedians and/entertainers run in your family? How much of an impact has your family had on your success?
A) No, journalism actually runs in my family, I’m a writer first. My grandfather was a journalist and wrote for Jet Magazine and I graduated from Florida A&M University with a degree in journalism. My mom has played a major role in my success. I remember I wanted to be a R&B singer, my mama was like “Ehh” but when I told her that I wanted to do comedy she was like “yes, go for it”! She has been with me every step of the way on this journey. So really seeing the fruits of my labor in this season has truly been rewarding for the both of us.
Q)Have you always wanted to be a comedian? If you were not a comedian, what do you think you would be focusing on right now?
A) I haven’t always wanted to be a comedian. In college they called me “The Next Oprah”, it was a whole thing, I had going on. I thought maybe I’d be a new anchor or on 106 and Park. I knew I wanted to be on television, I just didn’t know how I was going to get there. When I first moved to NY 106 and Park was still running and I would go to the filmings everyday trying to see how I could get my foot in the door but it never happened.
Q)Did attending FAMU help prepare you for success in your career in any way? If so, how?
A) FAMU, Oh, how I love thee! FAMU has been a major part of my journey, I have always had a network. From the time I set foot in NY, my ‘famuly’ has held me down. Every job I’ve had in NY is because a FAMU alum referred me which has been such a blessing. I always say going to FAMU was the best decision I’ve ever made.
Q)What was your first time on stage as a comedian like?
A) My first time on stage was like being home, I grabbed the mic and knew that comedy was exactly what I was supposed to be doing. Even though this journey has been tough, it’s not one of those financially rewarding gigs but it’s the long game and its sweet when you start to really live out your dreams. I opened for Michael Che, four times last year, he invited me into his writer’s room last year and I’m in two episodes of his sketch comedy show “That Damn Michael Che” on HBOMaxairing on May 26. I got to open for Dulce Sloan at the Kennedy Center last year and I’m opening for Roy Wood Jr. in June. From 2014 to now I have been grinding and the reward is sweet.
Q)Now that you’ve had multiple shows, how do you usually prepare for them? Do you have a go-to pre-show routine?
A) I don’t really have a pre-show routine like that, the one thing I know I need is the music artist, Jeezy lol. I listen to Jeezy before each show to get my energy up.
Q)How do you normally come up with your comedic material? How long have you been doing stand-up comedy or performing at open mics?
A) My brand is “My Life is a Joke TV”, so all of my material is based on my real life experiences which are hilarious. There’s so much to pull from and it makes my set so relatable. I started doing stand up in 2014.
Q)What usually happens if you tell a joke and nobody really laughs? Do you have to improvise?
A) If I tell a joke and no one laughs I typically say “F*ck yall, that was funny” and then they laugh lol. But comedy is an improvisation game, every crowd is different so the laughs aren’t guaranteed and sometimes you have to pivot to the crowd and figure out what will get the reaction you want. Typically, you only have about 12-15 minutes to figure it out so you have to be quick. But also bombing is the name of the game so that’ll happen too. Every comedian goes through it the key is to dust yourself off and try again.
Q) Who are a few of your favorite comedians/entertainers?
A) I love Katt Williams, Michael Che, Yamineka Saunders, Traci Ellis Ross, I means there’s so many favorites, too many to name.
Q) Have you ever had the opportunity to open up for or to meet any comedians that you look up to? If so, what was that experience like?
A) Michael Che was the first big name that gave me an opportunity and that experience and season in my life was amazing. One of my friends was scouting for a residency he had at Carolines and she asked me if I wanted to open for him and of course I jumped at the opportunity. I opened for him and killed it. He enjoyed my set and asked me to open for him 3 more times, all sold out shows. He literally took me under his wing, allowed me to hang out and really kick it with him. He introduced me to everyone in every room and made sure everyone knew who I was. It was such a dope experience and it’s really what has helped catapult me to where I am now. His stamp of approval opened hella doors.
Q) What would you say has been the most memorable moment in your career thus far?
A) The most memorable moment was filming “Wild N’ Out”. Filming Wild N’ Out was truly life changing and I’m so lucky to have had it.
Q) As a growing comedian, what is your opinion on the Will Smith and Chris Rock Oscar situation? As a comedian should some jokes and topics be off-limits?
A) No comment. lol
Q) After preparing for a platform for your comedic creativity for years now, how does it feel to have landed a spot on Season 18 of Wild’ N Out?
A) Landing Wild ‘ N Out feels surreal, I really can’t believe that this is my life honestly. I’m just so happy I never quit, there were so many times I thought about quitting and I’m so glad I didn’t. I’ve made some crazy decisions that were rash and to many quite dumb but I took my road and did it my way.
Q) Tell us a little more about how the opportunity to be casted on Wild’ N Out come about?
A) I feel like I manifested Wild N’ Out in a way. I had a meeting with my manager January 2nd and told her that I wanted to be on Wild N’ Out and then I submitted my audition tape and got it. It was really that simple. My friend who is an amazing videographer and director, filmed me and got it done in one day.
Q) How was it getting the chance to meet Nick Cannon and the rest of the Wild’ N Out cast members?
A) Meeting Nick and the rest of the cast members was amazing, everyone was so nice and open to helping me learn the ropes and how everything works on set.
Q) What is the best advice one or some of the vets from Wild’ N Out has given you so far?
A) DC wasn’t talking to me specifically but I was ear hustling and he was talking about always staying prayed up, keeping God first and how important it is to build with your team. When I think of him I think of Adam Sandler and how he includes all of his friends in his films. If you watch his movies you will see all of his friends, whether they are a barista, a bum on the street or a main character all of his friends are getting a check. DC is the same way, I love that about him, his work ethic is amazing and his loyalty is unmatched. He’s very smart, down to earth, kind and knowledgeable and he’s someone to look up to.
Q) What are the biggest differences in performing stand-up and performing in front of cameras for a television show?
A) Performing on Wild N’ Out is an improv show so its so different. You have to be quick and there isn’t a lot of room to mess up because there is a live audience and cameras which can be a little intimidating but it’s been fun to stretch myself and my funny bone and to see what I’m made of.
Q) In addition to comedy, a few years ago you ventured a bit into the entrepreneur world creating merchandise with the saying ‘I Don’t Owe No Man A Flat Stomach’, tell us more about the meaning behind this?
A) “I Don’t Owe No Man A Flat Stomach” is my brand and I love it, it helps women with confidence. It’s based on a joke I do about women loving themselves. Women’s bodies should look and feel good at any size and I want women to own that confidence and love themselves. Its all about body positivity and simply loving every part of you.
Q) If you could give an upcoming comedian or anybody who plans on being an entertainer some quick advice or motivation what would that be?
A) Don’t quit, keep going, your time is coming. Don’t settle, stop being lazy and do the work. Time is of the essence and it will pass. Dream big because dreams really do come true.
Q) What is next for Courtney Bledsoe? Where do you hope to see yourself in the next five years?
A) Courtney Bee will be in movies, on TV shows, on tour, married to the love of my life with at least one kid, its the takeover. Ya girl is going after her dream life!
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Facebook: Courtney Bledsoe