16:15 - The Truth (Explained in Doodles!)

16:15 - The Truth (Explained in Doodles!)

Postby gareth morinan » 30 Sep 2011, 16:32

- The venue - Nightclub. Quite nice inside. The back room holds about 40 people, but its quite nice in that there's sort of two sections, a near and a far bit, so if you only have 20 audience in it still seems quite full up (as long as you get them all to sit in the near section of the room)

- The performance area - Small raised platform. Suffices as a stage for that room. Behind the stage is a bar (not in use) which can be used as a backstage area (sort of).

- The team of staff at the venue - very helpful, always willing to accomodate us and help us out, never had any trouble or complaints.

- Publicity - Fringe brochure, flyering, posters (at FF venues), word of mouth, press releases (sent out one in June, another just before the start of the festival). Got two reviews - ThreeWeeks and The Skinny (both 4 stars), an article in Edinburgh Spotlight, and randomly a mention on some American website that I've never heard of. I reckon the main way I got people into the show was having a distinctive description in the brochures. Also I had a pretty distinctive flyer, so a lot of people were taking them from me on the Royal Mile. I did about an hour of flyering a day but still managed to shift all 5000 flyers by the end of the run.

- Audience - on a good day I'd pack it out and have to turn people away, probably did that 5 times. Bad day was more like 15 people audience. Average I'd say was around the 25-30 mark.

- Buckets - I did quite well out of the buckets, on a good day close to £100, bad day about £20. Probably averaged £50 a day. I did have a ploy of offering a set of gMorinan posters to anyone who put in £5 or more into the bucket, which certainly helped incentivise people to give.
The pitch at the end is very important though, don't come on too strong ("£10 seems reasonable, thats what you'd pay elsewhere") or too weak ("give whatever change you have") - somewhere in between where you seem credible but not desperate is where you wanna be.

- Technical set-up at the venue - I had to set up my own tech everyday, which was a lot of hassle. I wouldn't recommend it...

- Admin & Communication process (between Free Fringe, Captains, Venues and you) - That was fine, I never had any problems that I needed to contact anyone about because the venue seemed happy to do a lot to help us out.

- Any other learning points for anyone involved - what worked, what didn't work, what needs to change
The main problem with the back room, is that audience entering the venue don't necessarily know that its there, and assume that the show they are looking for is the one thats happening in the front room. I had a lot of people coming to my show saying that they'd tried to come see it several days earlier, but accidentally seen the show in the front room instead. Which was quite frustrating because I knew my audience was being siphoned off, but there's only so much you can do to inform people in the front room that there's another show going on without looking like a dick who's trying to steal someone else's audience (when in fact you're just trying to inform the handful of people that are your audience of where they should be). That was the main downside, because its just another layer of hassle and frustration that you don't need. Perhaps a solution could be to put up curtains along the side of the front room, so that when entering the venue, the audience is forced to walk to the back of the front room, where they will then be able to see that there's an entrance to the back room as well.

I think the Sin club is a great venue, and definitely could be used as a 'flagship' central venue as Sean Brightman has mentioned.
gareth morinan
 
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