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Comfortable Being Anxious

Jackie Sanchez is appearing in smaller clubs like Elmo's in prepration for her performance at the HA Festival in Texas.

by Chuck king

BOYNTON BEACH – If it seems like Jackie Sanchez’s name is appearing on show lineups much more frequently of late, there’s a reason.

She’s in training of sorts.

“There’s a chance I’ll be on HBO Max,” Sanchez said,

In mid September Sanchez heads to San Antonio, Tex., to perform as part of the HA Festival. Promoted as the “biggest Latinx comedy festival,” the HA Festival occurs across six venues during three days, culminating in a special that will air for HBO Max.

“If I have a good set then they’ll put it on the special on HBO Max,” Sanchez said. “It’s just kind of a high pressure thing, so I just want to get back to being used to being anxious.”

Sanchez frequently battles anxiety in stage, particularly when performing in smaller venues.

In the coming weeks she’ll attempt to become more comfortable in such settings by performing in Fort Lauderdale, Delray Beach and Stuart area bars.

On Wednesday she was the final scheduled performer at Elmo’s Rock Bar’s first comedy show.

“I’ve just been saying yes to a lot of smaller shows that I normally avoid because they make me anxious,” Sanchez said.


Corey Cognac (Host and Producer)
Nico Bolling
Zach Bugarin
Dom Mesci
Jackie Sanchez

Elmo’s Rock Bar (August 5, 2021) – This marked the first show for the Boynton Beach venue better known as an after hours bar (open until 5 a.m.). Often a site for live rock bands, the venue has a stage with lighting – which is nice – but the audience sits far removed from the performers. It’s a big place, so it takes a lot to fill the place. When that doesn’t happen, like on Wednesday, the comics have a tough time connecting.

Sanchez’s story about how she got back at her ex-best friend for sleeping with her boyfriend got strong laughs last week at the Palm Beach Improv and landed again on Wednesday. Perhaps it’s the magic of Adam Sandler.


Bugarin’s rationale for wanting to die in a nuclear explosion is on point – the excitement of it all! – and was a close second for highlight of the night. …After taking some time off, Dom Mesci is back performing, mining the recent breakup of a long-term relationship for comedy. …Bolling had a tough night, but his bit about becoming a hillbilly with a pet mongoose could become some sort of animated series. …Cognac continues to open rooms in South Florida.

Upon his call to the stage, Bugarin ran up one side of the stage and then down the other, doing a lap around the bar while high-fiving everyone in attendance. It was a fun way to start his set, getting a largely ambivalent crowd involved.

An open mic followed the scheduled show, and South Florida comics turned out to perform. At least 16 different local comics took advantage of the open mic, experiencing various degrees of success. Had it not been for those comics attending the show, the bar wouldn’t have been busy at all.

“Jackie Sanchez killed it.” – Corey Cognac

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