El Barrio as a venue and "IT'S NOT REALLY THERE" the show

El Barrio as a venue and "IT'S NOT REALLY THERE" the show

Postby trevorferdy » 27 Sep 2013, 03:37

El Barrio is a small basement night-club with a moderately sleazy but fun reputation on Hanover Street, close to the intersection with Princes Street. It has a strong Latin American theme and drinks are moderate to expensive.

- the seating. The given number was 50. In reality, it was 30 as there were so many sofas taking up the space of what could have been many more chairs.
- use of PA. Having been told we could use the PA, we found out that we couldn't.
- locality: while the venue has moderate footfall in the day time, from early evening until the nightclub opens it is very quiet
- little storage space: the club did not allow us to store bulky items and so some performers had to collect their items from other local venues every day

- the staff were friendly and considerate, packing away comedian's stuff when they had not turned up without complaint
- the manager was friendly and accommodating, clearly into the whole vibe of the fringe
- the room in which we performed was a good size with nice mood lighting (although this broke down half way through the run, leading to darker than was acceptable conditions)

IT'S NOT REALLY THERE - Lynsey Bonell and Trevor Ferdy

After a strong start with several full houses, numbers quickly dipped at around the mark where the fringe 'proper' started and the discounted period ended. Then it picked up again, and declined once more in the last week.

Liaison with the venue/staff/manager:
In general it was good. The staff and manager were helpful and considerate and apart from Edwardo (who wasn't unpleasant), easy going.

Liaison with other performers in the same venue:
This was hard, due mostly to a huge number of empty slots. It seems that several groups who were listed as playing had cancelled before the PBH run but we were never informed. The last performers of the day were very hard to contact.

Liaison with the PBH managing team:
The venue was provided with two mics, one stand, one PA system with faulty plug connects and so connecting leads. Had we known that the minimum amount of equipment would not have been provided, we could have brought some of our own.

The reception from the audience changed steeply from performance to performance. Approximately half of the people who came for the show brought drinks in house. Tips ranged dramatically from a total of a few pounds to just under one hundred pounds. We were surprised to find that reviewers mostly consisted of students. I didn't wish to be reviewed by people who were half my age. If you don't GET IT, don't WRITE ABOUT IT.

Main problems for us:
Lack of PBH Programmes / liaison with some of the other performers in the venue / faulty equipment / some low audience numbers.

We were told my the PBH management team that El Barrio had been deemed a SUB-VENUE. This was completely unacceptable on many levels: if it really did receive less support that other venues then don't actually tell us that. And why are some venues getting more support than others?

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