INTERVIEW WITH MATT RIFE | Seeking Ultimate Happiness
We, all human beings, have the power to foreground the positive experiences in our lives, choosing to have fun and find joy in everything we do. When we align with our desire to be happy, it becomes natural to fill our days with vibrant stories and people. Our physical reality mirrors our emotional realm, and when we tap into our inner joy the world around us becomes more beautiful. It is our most natural state of being to be happy.
The talented comedian Matt Rife has chosen to find humor and joy every day and shares that attitude through his comedy. He tells us: “The beauty of life is in its experiences. And I have found a purpose and knowledge that brings me the ultimate happiness.”
In this uplifting interview, discover how Matt’s infectious positive attitude translates into his comedy…
- Please introduce yourself briefly. Who, in your own words, is Matt Rife?
Matt Rife is a 23-year-old standup comedian and actor. Born and raised in a small town outside of Columbus, Ohio. He started his standup career at the age of fifteen and has risen to become one of the hottest and youngest comedians in the country.
- Do you remember the moment you felt: ‘Comedy is my passion’? If so, how do your own expectations and self believe played out in the process of wanting it to manifesting it?
I was fourteen when I realized comedy is my passion. I had always been the class clown, and I was always making my family laugh. One day my mom won tickets on the radio to see Dane Cook at Nationwide Arena in Columbus, we went, and I was just in total awe. I could feel it, I knew that’s what I wanted to do. A month or so later, I entered my seventh-grade talent show, and a year after that, I began going to open mics each week.
- Stand-up comedy’s outcome is dependent on how do you connect with yourself before going on stage which in turn is reflected in the viewers’ reactions. How would you describe your experience when words and fun ideas come to you and through you?
It is such an adrenaline rush when you come up with a new funny idea or a bit. My jokes are all initial ideas that I find comedic or make me laugh. To then find out you can make a room full of strangers laugh at the same thing that’s funny to you, is a very bonding and happy experience.
- Comedy requires you not to take yourself and life too seriously and see something to laugh about in everything – how do you bring your comedy into your daily life and attitude?
I try to bring my Comedy into my everyday life. It is important to find something to laugh at every day. There is usually something fun to find in most things, and if you can find it, it helps relieve a lot of stress and anxiety. It makes you a much more pleasant person to be around when you can add a sense of humor to a conversation or situation.
- You are featured on NBC’s Bring the Funny, an open mic competition. What is it like to perform alongside other talented up-and-coming comedians?
It is always a pleasure to perform with other talented comedians. You can only grow by being around the best. However, to be the best, you have to beat the best. I am so thankful for the other great comics who are so funny they force me to be a better performer. It is nice to be surrounded by people with the same dream and work ethics. That way we can all appreciate the experience.
- You were the youngest performer at The World Famous Laugh Factory and on MTV’s Wild N’ Out. How did those experiences improve your skills as a comedian?
I’m so thankful for both Wild N’ Out and The Laugh Factory. To be able to have found success with two legendary comedy franchises, I am beyond lucky. Since moving to LA, The Laugh Factory has been my home comedy club for the last six years. They were the first club to take a chance on me, and they let me hustle and grow on that stage. It was such a dream come true for such a legendary club to have my back the way they did. Wild N’ Out let me workout my improv and competitive muscles. I was pushed by some of the funniest people on television AND it was my first real TV show. It was the exact pressure I needed. It helped mold me to be the comedian I am today.
- You are featured on Lifetime’s Stalked by My Doctor: A Sleepwalker’s Nightmare as Katie’s estranged boyfriend Leo. Do you see yourself transitioning to fully being an actor and portraying all kinds of characters, not necessarily in the genre of comedy?
It is my dream to transition over to acting and to even take on non-comedic roles and go the darker route. Acting has become a passion of mine. I am a massive fan of the arts and films. I want to show people I am versatile dramatically, physically, and comedically, outside of standup.
- Do you have any upcoming projects you are especially excited about?
I’m very excited about a project I’m developing right now with my best friend, it’s the funniest thing I have ever composed. It is a huge priority of mine right now, and I am praying I get the opportunity to bring it to life someday. I genuinely believe people are going to love it. It’s a unique mix of comedy and drama like no one has ever seen.
- When you are young and successful, you must dedicate a lot of time and effort into your career. How have you built your personal life into your career?
My career is my whole life, but luckily, life and experiences are the primary fuel for my work. Focusing on building my career is an overwhelming, stressful, nonstop effort. You are continually playing chess trying to make moves, sometimes two turns in advance, trying to line things up. Every day you try to find a way to be better. However, you have to make time to have fun. You owe that to yourself, everyone does. What is the point of a great career if you miss out on life. You have to find a good balance to be truly happy.
- Are you involved in any charity organization or humanitarian cause you would like to mention?
I’m not directly associated with any specific charities or causes; however, I am a massive supporter and advocate for almost all wildlife organizations. I love animals so much, and I want to protect them all; from saving endangered species to finding a dog a new home at a local pound.
- The spirit of The Hedonist Magazine is The Essence of a Joyful Living. How does Joy during the creative process affect your own experience and in consequence the final manifestation of your actions?
I think Joy and Happiness are the meaning of life. I do not believe we are here to stress or worry or be angry. Society does give you responsibilities to provide your life structure and purpose, but it’s up to you to maintain that true search for happiness. The beauty of life is in its experiences. And I have found a purpose and knowledge that brings me the ultimate happiness. I’m fortunate to have found that, I feel like a lot of people never do.
- When you hear: “You can be, do and have anything you want,” words from the Abraham-Hicks teachings, what is your take on such a statement?
I think that statement is incredibly accurate. I believe in manifestation and hard work. It does take the opportunity, but if you believe with everything inside of you and project what you deeply desire, the universe may grant you that opportunity, and if it does, you will have needed to put in the necessary work to be ready. I believe you can do, be and have anything you want.