I should take a moment to publicly thank Ian Hawkins and Aidan Goatley for their involvement in the show. Ian stepped in as technical support and general show-runner as well as an act for the Great Big Comedy Picnic. Not only that, but Ian has also provided excellent company and post-show analysis, offering good feedback and ideas. Aidan, though not specifically enlisted for the goat-herding that needs to be done for a Fringe show, has taken the bull by the horns and... I realise now that this sentence has been banjaxed by his surname and his description, in his act, of his work in a pet shop. The point is that he's turned up early, watched my solo show twice, given excellent feedback, and pitched in for the show he was asked to do.
This is what Fringe is all about: doing shows, working with people you like, and chasing the dream of entertaining an audience.
Sunday's dream was... well... it was what it was.
Pre Show Stuff
I spent the morning and some of the afternoon in my hotel on their wifi. I had breakfast, hid in my room on the wifi, went down to the bar on the wifi, and eventually left, having been slightly hijacked by a strange man with no front teeth, who wanted to tell me "man in the pub" conspiracy bollocks. He managed to do JFK and Diana within 5 minutes. I did slightly goad him into this.
As I was walking around Brighton, I got to thinking about a corner of my show which has never really worked. I had another idea for it and started chewing that over. Eventually I went to the venue, early, to try out the idea before it was remotely show time.
Let's Go On With The Show
Show 1 - A nice audience, some of whom had decided to see the show before I went round attempting to drum up some business. It was a fun show, but I overran a bit. Overall, enjoyable.
Show 2 - Nobody came. In the end, I scraped the barrel of the bar and offered to comp in anyone who wanted to come in. This gave me a rag tag bunch of misfits of an audience who slowly whittled down any vague authority I might have been able to pretend to have from the stage. That said, it was interesting to do the show with such a crowd and I think we had some fun along the way. As we'd started late, and as the show hadn't been hitting home as much as I'd liked, I ended up doing edited highlights... I think we ended on a truce.
Interestingly, one of the people who came along, bought me a drink - a Jager-bomb (whatever that is) - which I passed on to a friend, given that I was driving.
Show 3 - The Great Big Comedy Picnic - after the previous show's "fight", I was expecting something along a similar line. In fact, I got an audience of 4 who were lovely to us. Sometimes you need an audience to fix the work of the previous audience. I told them that they could be supportive, they obviously believed me, and we had some fun. I even dug out some of the whimsy for them.
I went back to my lodgings tired but happy. Fringe stuff is hard going. It's worth it, but the lows could get you down if you let them.
Every show is a fresh opportunity, though.