16.15 Twins (Dram House, Bothy)

16.15 Twins (Dram House, Bothy)

Postby JackBarry » 27 Sep 2013, 15:17

The Venue - We jumped at the opportunity to perform here as we had performed at the venue when it was known as the Store and knew what a good venue it was. Central, well known and with a nice bar it is a great free fringe venue. It was a bit difficult not knowing what name the bar would be operating under, but ultimately this hopefully didn't confuse too many potential viewers.

Performance Area - The Bothy Bar did not feel like it was supposed to be a performance space, being the main bar. I think we may have been moved in there when the club downstairs was not finished in time. We struggled for the first few days as our venue seemed to be the main thoroughfare for people going to other parts of the venue. The stage was a flat floor, behind which was an open window onto a functioning building site. The noise and builders behind were quite distracting. After the first few days, though, we changed the seating so it was side on. This helped a lot as the audience weren't blinded by sunlight or put off by the builders. After that we had a lot of fun performing there. The was still quite a lot of noise from the room next door, the building site and the toilets but we managed to ignore it.

Staff - The staff were very helpful. We did feel like we were getting in the way a bit, as we were in the main bar, so there were some teething problems at first. They were very helpful all the time and did their best to serve drinks quietly and let the show go well. All really friendly. They were definitely on the back foot, as well, seeing as the bar opened the evening before our first show, so we were all learning together.

Advertising - We were listed in the main programme and the Invisible Dot brochure, which I think really helped with numbers. We flyered a lot on Cowgate and around Chambers Street. We also exit flyered any other shows we did and a couple of shows similar to ours. Put a few posters up as well.

Numbers - Audience sizes were generally great. Think the smallest we had was about 20, most was about 80. It was an easy room to fill as we were usually the first thing people saw when they came in. We were very happy with the audiences.

The show - We were happy with the show. It seemed to be very well received by audiences. We had only been writing together for a few months, so we know now that we;ve got a good base to work on and make sure next year's show is even better.

Buckets - We were largely happy with our donations. Interestingly we always seemed to get more money in the bucket when the audience was smaller. Maybe people don't feel the need to be generous if there are lots of people in. Enough for beer money, anyway.

Tech - The tech all worked pretty well. The venue had a sound system that we could plug a laptop into for music which worked really well. The microphone broke a bit towards the end of the run, but we didn't use one in our show, really, and the room was small enough that you didn't need one anyway. We bought a couple of desk lamps from the pound shop that could clip onto the walls to create a bit of atmosphere, which worked well.

Contact - Our contact with our venue captain was slightly sporadic. I don't think we met him once during the run. We didn't have regular access to email because our flat had no internet so we missed a lot of messages. More phone contact might have been better. It wasn't his fault though, most of the confusion came from the bar opening so late in the day before the beginning of the festival.

Largely we were happy. I hope that the Dram House is a free fringe venue again next year as it was a great, central hub. Perhaps the whole venue would work better with the Bothy Bar as an actual bar and not a venue. If that room were a venue again I think more sound proofing, maybe a heavy curtain, would be needed between the room and the toilets and the room next door. I might help the shows if the bar stopped serving during the shows as well.
JackBarry
 
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Joined: October 2012

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