Soup by Tomato - Speakeasy (Voodoo Rooms) 13.15

Soup by Tomato - Speakeasy (Voodoo Rooms) 13.15

Postby tomatocomedy » 18 Sep 2013, 14:53

Venue

The Voodoo Rooms is a bar, serving food, with multiple spaces that are regularly used for gigs, events and functions. The Speakeasy is one of three performance spaces at The Voodoo Rooms. These are self-contained function rooms, in use as such throughout the year. The venue also has a main bar that serves good food. The Speakeasy has its own separate bar and toilets (at the back of the room, so not disruptive to the performance). During the day there is not a great deal of passing trade but it is definitely busier in the evening with regular, generally friendly, customers.
As an additional point we felt like the venue needed more signage outside and in the surrounding areas to promote and encourage people towards it, and simply let them know where it was. Something as simple as a couple of boards or banners outside would have solved this issue.

Performance Area

The speakeasy has a small raised stage equipped with audio and visual facilities, including a projector screen that can be lowered if needed. The seated capacity is around 60 with space for standing at the back. The tech area is located to the right of the stage and has a small booth ideal for one. There is no offstage area and the bar is located at the back of the room. There is no storage in the room but a cloakroom is available to all performers. Bare in mind this room is small and shared by all companies performing at the Voodoo Rooms. We did have some slight problems with retrieving props from this room as it got extremely messy and full.

Staff

The staff at the Voodoo Rooms were extremely supportive and friendly. There was always someone available to assist with any issues. On the day of our get in we were taken through all the equipment and space available to us. During performances the staff on the bar always greeted us with a friendly hello and we could often here them chuckling during the show.

Advertising

We were included in the Fringe brochure, the free fringe brochure and on respective websites. We also signed up to any local listing websites. We used social media but the majority of our audience came through word of mouth. We got 5000 flyers which was probably twice as many as we needed. Our flying was most successful outside of the half price huts or exit flyering similar shows. The royal mile was a waste of time, as was dumping flyers on tables etc. We could probably have used the Edinburgh Fringe Office more as they offer a lot of services that we didn't utilise.

Show audience

Our audiences ranged from 6 to 35, but we never had to cancel a show. Generally the weekends proved more fruitful, as did the days when we spent a good hour beforehand flyering. The weather didn't seem to affect audience sizes. Due to the time that we were on (1315) we found it difficult to get passing trade at the Voodoo Rooms due to its location.

Buckets

Donations were fairly low, despite the enthusiastic response to the show. We realised after seeing other shows how important the end "money talk" is: not to annoy people but also to make it clear how the process works.

Technical

The technical set up worked for our show although we occasionally had a problem with the video cable connection as it probably could do with replacing. Other than that everything worked well and we were well catered for.

Admin and Communication

Venue Captain Aiden Goatley was extremely friendly and helpful, especially as this was our first year performing at the free fringe. He kept moral up and was a lovely chap.
The only negative point with the venue was that we were informed that we would have to provide our own chairs and after lugging some up to the venue miraculously some had appeared. Otherwise it was a smooth Free Fringe experience.

Learning Points

For our show we realised that the time slot was a bit too early and we would like to use this venue again but potentially at a later spot in the afternoon. We learnt that the key to getting people on seats is to be out there and talk to them as much as possible without annoying them or tiring yourself out too much. We met lots of other Free Fringers and had plenty of laughs. It was a great environment to be part of.
tomatocomedy
 
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