Story plot: New York City native moves to Denver and breaks into show business.
It sounds like fiction, but it’s the real deal. Vic Alejandro is an information technology program manager for Denver Water. But outside of the office, this former standup comedian works as an actor.
Alejandro, a native New Yorker who grew up in Long Island, launched his comedy and acting careers in Denver after moving to Colorado for an IT job.
That’s when Alejandro decided to try his hand at writing comedy. He thought creating jokes and getting into standup would be a good way to hone his writing skills.
He was right.
Alejandro started performing at Comedy Works in Denver, which he said is the best stage in the country for standup comedians.
“It sounds surprising, but the room is perfect and the audiences are always great,” he said. “They always get the jokes!”
Alejandro headlined — and won — a few comedy festivals and got to work alongside some of the biggest names in comedy, like Brian Regan. He’s even featured in a book, “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Jokes.”
In 2000, Alejandro was approached by an agent who asked him if he’d consider acting. At first, he didn’t think of himself as an actor, but he quickly changed his mind.
“You’re absolutely acting when you’re doing comedy,” Alejandro said. “When you’re telling a joke for the hundredth time, you’ve got to make it look as though you’re telling it for the first time.”
For 17 years, Alejandro juggled his career as a full-time IT professional with gigs as a part-time comedian.
Eventually, Alejandro stepped away from standup and took on small acting jobs, like commercials and minor roles in movies. He has his own IMDb page, is a member of the Screen Actor’s Guild and has his coveted SAG card from that organization.
“I’ve done several feature films. One of my films, “Raiders of the Damned,” was on screens in France and Germany, and is probably on Netflix,” Alejandro said. “It seems like I’m always cast as the cop, criminal, coach or military personnel.”
What did he think of the film?
“I don’t know because I haven’t seen it!” Alejandro replied.
Like most actors, Alejandro doesn’t enjoy watching himself on screen.
“It’s hard to watch final products,” he said. “When I do watch the films I’m in, I really don’t enjoy it. All I can think is that I could do better. It’s a little maddening, actually.”
While he has occasionally thought about going back to standup comedy, he said he’s happy to be doing other things instead of being at the comedy club several times a week.
“I don’t think people really realize how much time and effort it takes to put together a great stand-up routine and to be successful at comedy,” Alejandro said. “I put a lot of thought into writing my jokes and rehearsing them to get them right.”
“It’s a different platform, but you use all the foundational skills from comedy in acting,” he said. “Acting, improvisational acting and standup comedy are all different muscle groups. You just have to adapt them accordingly.”
The comedy muscles clearly get used regardless of if he’s in front of a computer or in front of a camera, as he seems to frequently be trying out new material.
“I recently joined a dart league,” he said straight-faced. “I must be getting ready for the low-impact stage of my life.”
As long as the auditions keep coming, Alejandro said he’ll keep acting, and he’ll keep finding things to laugh about at work and on the screen.