Comedian Spotlight: Jiaoying Summers

Before moving to the United States from China for college, Jiaoying Summers had never even heard of stand-up comedy. But now, she has millions of fans across her social media channels, owns and operates two comedy clubs in L.A., and tours all over the world. So how did she go from an aspiring actor, to the cover of Vogue and the LA Times, to hosting OFTV’s first-ever stand-up special? Find out in our Comedian Spotlight: Jiaoying Summers.

Aspiring Actor to Club Owner

It is easy to see how Jiaoying has built a large following both online and in person. After all, she is hilarious and has the unique ability to weave stories from her past into comedic gold.

For example, the time she auditioned for a John Singleton movie and instead of booking the part, she booked a lunch with him.

Jiaoying is also very open about her time struggling to break into the entertainment industry as a Chinese immigrant, and how she is dedicated to helping other outsider comedians find audiences who appreciate them.

We sat down with Jiaoying while she was putting on her makeup to pick her brain about her early days in comedy and advice she has for new comedians.

Interview transcript below.

What did you want to be when you grew up?

I just wanted to become somebody who brings other people joy. And who is popular, loved, and makes people happy!

How did you get your start in comedy?

I remember I auditioned for John Singleton’s show Rebel. I forgot a line, and I started improving. And the whole team was laughing their asses off.

John Singleton said, “You are so funny. I really like you. You should try stand-up!” And I said, “What is stand-up?

He walked to me with his phone, showing me a clip of Ali Wong. Just like, in the middle of the audition! He said, “Look at this! You can do this! You’d be so funny!

So I tried one open mic. I bombed! It was so bad! I remember walking out and people were like, “Somebody should not be doing comedy.” Somebody? Me.

And I’m like, “You know what? I’m going to go back there and show them that I can do it.

How do you feel about sharing so much of yourself through your comedy?

I want to be very vulnerable, to talk with my fans about who I really am. So they can know that they can be anything they want because they’re better off than me from the beginning.

I am a fighter. And I’ll always fight for my voice, and for who I am. Because, as a comedian it is my job to be okay with who I am, and to be willing to share my dark secrets and my past. And to be okay to make it funny.

How has it been going from a comic to a comedy club owner?

I realize that I have the power to create a community that’s giving stage time for minorities who do not really get enough.

So in our shows, they can just be themselves. Because I’m an Asian woman who has this fresh-off-the-boat accent. I don’t belong here! None of us belong. That’s why we belong here.

What advice do you have for stand-ups starting their careers?

You can decide your own future, actually. Because if you have the power to be funny, and you have the power to sell tickets, you are a star.

The fans are not stupid. They are very smart. So my advice would be to put your content on social media: on TikTok, on Instagram. And the good thing about OnlyFans and OFTV is that you can actually get paid.

Focus on writing jokes, watching classic comedians, and going to open mics. Because the more open mics you go to, the better you get.

There’s more great comedy on OnlyFans.

Re-watch the LMAOF that started it all on OFTV.