BWW Interview: Motivational Speaker Kyle Cease Uses Comedy to Transform Ideals and Bring His Event to a New York Stage
Kyle Cease is a keynote speaker, transforming audiences through his unique blend of comedy and transformation, who has racked up millions of views on both Youtube and Facebook with his inspirational teachings.
Following his 2 day seminar in Los Angeles, Kyle has brought his event, EVOLVING OUT LOUD to New York City at the New World Stages. While preparing for his show, BroadwayWorld had the opportunity to talk to Kyle about his ideals and taking his event to brand new audiences. Check out the full interview below!
When people think comedy, they usually think of telling jokes in means of making fun of someone or something, but you use it to motivate others and to transform their ideals. How did you come up with that idea?
Well, I did stand up first. I started as a stand up comic when I was 12 years old, performing in clubs and touring all over the country. I even had two Comedy Central specials, and started out my entire life out as a comedian. So it's not like I was thinking, "Now that I'm doing transformation I should add comedy," or something like that. It was just something that I trained myself to do and be first my entire life, before I had my own experiences and wanted to show people those same experiences.
What kind of experiences were they?
After touring as a comedian for years and years and years, very often I would get to achieve something that was a dream of mine, and I would always think "What's next?" And, I think that a big illusion that we all live under, is: "When something happens, I'll be happy." I mean, everybody is always thinking, "When I quit that job, then I'll be happy," and what I really realized that it's not when something happens I'll be happy, it's when I'm happy things will happen. When I'm just connected to myself and I don't need anything to be happy, life will happen around that.
And that also started moving over into my standup. When I was performing, I noticed that any time I was trying to get a laugh I was lying to myself that I was incomplete unless someone laughs at my jokes, so I was writing from a place of incomplete. And then, when I understand that I was just here to play and just go on the stage and enjoy that I'm on a stage and just be myself, and not need anything from the audience, weirdly they all showed up. That's when my entire career started changing and it started becoming the less I do, the more results happen. Only our ego tries to make something work, and if you just start adding some enjoyment to your life, and adding enjoyment to the moment, all of a sudden your entire life changes: everyone wants to be around you, people want to work with you more, things happen because you're not doing things from your head, you're doing things because you love doing things.
Another phrase associated with your event is "I Hope to Screw This Up: An Event Where Perfection Comes to Die." So, is there anything you actually fear anymore?
I guess that I get nervous sometimes, but I know that those nerves are an illusion. I know for a fact that those nerves aren't real. If you look back at your childhood, all you did was what you loved to do, you did what you wanted to do. You wanted to be the president or an astronaut, and you just played and not cared what people thought of you. And, as time goes on, society moves you from a creator to a consumer- the news has to scare you all day, and your teachers and parents tell you that your wishing is impossible, and you start to believe it.
And so, if I get nervous, I know that an illusion is showing up in my mind, the story of the childhood me that needed to do something to get my parents love, the person that wanted someone because I did't understand that I'm being loved as is, and if we just get that we are loved as is, you just do what you wanna do and you don't get nervous anymore. And the only time I'm nervous is when I'm under the illusion that who I am is what people think of me.
You're going from a two full day seminar to a two hour show: What's your plan for incorporating the same message into a shorter time period? What's going to be different about the two events?
Well, what we've done usually is that we do two days. I usually speak for 8 to 10 hours a day. Nothing is planned at all, and I just start and allow whatever I need to say to come through me. And, all that this event is is a two hour version of that, which is still complete, and it's not incomplete. It's a great show in it's own. And I don't ever know what I'm going to do. If we knew what we are going to do, we'd be control freaks, and the people of the show wouldn't be hearing my heart, they would be hearing what I prepare before the show.
This whole event is about falling in love with not knowing, allowing spontaneity, creativity, and truth to come through you, your vulnerably, your authenticity, your fear, and the people that go to this event. I've done many shows where I've talked for just one hour, so time really doesn't matter in this. Every show is totally different, and I never know what I'm gonna say. So, every day I learn new things.
Your show relies a lot on the audience, so, do you think there will be a different tone of the audience when it comes to New York versus Los Angeles?
I believe no matter where you're from, no matter your gender is, no matter what your backstory is, we all meet in the same place. We all have a heart and we all are loved under all of that. I don't see people as labels. I see people as just infinite possibility change to love. And, the reason is because I don't see myself that way. If you see people as labels, you see yourself as labels. You file yourself as a certain way and you think that what you are is just a comedian or just a speaker or a worker or someone who grew up in this town or whatever, and we all have stories that do matter. But under that we're all connected in the same place, and because of that, it doesn't matter where I go. It just the energy and the flow and the excitement and the freedom. So, anything that makes someone different from New York that they are from Los Angeles is their conditioning to not who they were truly are.
What inspires you? It is the audience? Is there a specific person? An idea? What really motivates you to do this?
So, this is funny... I always play with the word "motivation" because to me, it is when you're gonna make something happen or you have a drive to make something happen. And, to me, that's the big illusion in our lives, that we think we have to make something happen to be happy. What really drives me, is what I really am, and it's more like the depth of what I'm not makes room for the birth of what I really am. And every day I get closer and closer to connecting with myself. Life is exciting, and I just fall in love with life and myself, and when you just do that, you don't need motivation to do anything. It's just what you are. It's like an apple tree needing motivation to make apples: It's just what we are.
I'm in love with my life and I'm in love with what I do, and it's amazing to get to do this and co-create with audience members. I don't see them as an audience or a following I see them as other co-creators willing to create something together.
Cease is a keynote speaker, transforming audiences through his unique blend of comedy and transformation. He has been a guest speaker at colleges, summits, and Fortune 500 conferences including at Agape International, GATE, Revelations, Sun Valley Wellness Festival, Sedona World Wisdom Days, and the Longevity Now Conference, among others. In addition to leading his own Evolving Out Loud live events, he has spoken with renown teachers such as Eckhart Tolle, Jim Carrey, Michael Beckwith, Louis CK, Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra, Mary Morrisey, David Wolfe, and thousands more.
Prior to being a transformative speaker, Kyle was a headlining comedian for 25 years with two number one Comedy Central specials. In 2009, he earned a #1 ranking on the network's Standup Showdown. He has appeared in over 100 different TV and movie appearances, including 10 Things I Hate About You, Not Another Teen Movie, Jimmy Kimmel Show, The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Chelsea Lately, Martin Short Show, Comics Unleashed, and numerous VH1 Shows. He will soon be in print as well with Beyond Word Publishing.
Tickets for the event be purchased at kylecease.com.