Best Local Comic
Charleston comedian Robin Phoenix has a mission beyond making people laugh. After 26 years in the Army, including five tours to Afghanistan and Iraq, she wants to use her sense of humor and training as a certified humor professional to implement therapeutic comedy in the Charleston area.
While preparing to retire from the Army in 2019, Phoenix took a comedy bootcamp class through the Armed Services Arts Partnership, a nonprofit that organizes comedy instruction to veterans.
“For me, it was very healing,” she said. “Not just because it’s in the creative arts, but also because it created a community.”
Though Phoenix had occasionally performed comedy as a hobby for more than a decade, she really launched herself into the realm of professional comedy after completing the course and starting her LLC, Best Medicine Brigade, in November 2021.
Now, Phoenix books comedy shows throughout the Charleston area and all over the country, bringing comedic acts performed by her and other comedians to restaurants and bars as well as American Legions and VFWs.
Aside from comedy shows, Best Medicine Brigade also gives funny but motivational talks on the applied therapeutic use of humor. Phoenix also hopes to start a pilot program for humor therapy at the VA Hospital in Charleston.
“I think the work that we do is pretty fantastic, and that’s where the following comes from because there’s real value in that,” Phoenix said. “Not just for veterans but for a whole community,” My focus has been on [helping] veterans, but humor therapy and humor as a mental health wellness strategy is good for anybody.”
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