13:20 Caimh McDonnell: Southbound and Down

13:20 Caimh McDonnell: Southbound and Down

Postby Caimh » 30 Sep 2014, 23:30

I was in the bigger room - it's listed as 100 capacity but realistically I think it's more like 90 at most. That's not uncommon, I think most rooms in Ed have a smaller capacity than listed. Having said that, you could get 100 in and on Saturdays there was but that includes standing, people sitting on the stairs etc.

Overall, it is an absolutely fantastic venue. I can't speak highly enough of the staff who were lovely and helpful. It's air-conditioned which is absolutely fantastic.

It's got a stage that is perfect for Stand-up and the sound rig etc. is top quality. As mentioned elsewhere, the chairs have to be put out every morning and back every night as it is a nightclub 7 nights a week when the fringe is on. This is done on a rota but as somebody else said, it was disappointing that some shows didn't help out - seeing as it was the only thing required of you at the venue.

One minor issue with the room is that there are comfortable couches at the back of the room and you do have to have a system to stop people filing them up first which is really awkward. It's worth saying when you open the room that you are only sitting the first three rows first - and reassuring people that nobody gets picked on etc (assuming they don't). Also, bung your coat and bag down on the couches to stop people filling them up. This is a really minor thing but worth being aware of.

Noise-bleed can be an issue I believe but it was no problem my end as the show in the other room didn't have any loud noise. Personally - I shouted a bit in parts but I did try and keep an eye on it and regularly checked if it was causing an issue. It's all basic common sense and manners really.

Techwise - it's handy to know where the amps are upstairs, how to rig up the mics every morning and where the switches for the aircon are but if you turn up on the first day, the staff will explain that to you.

I had 3 flyers out most days and I did a fair bit myself. As a result, despite being on fairly early I generally got good crowd numbers and a good bucket. The important thing to know regarding collections at any free shows is to actually do a pitch at the end of the show and definitely hold the bucket yourself. It is also worth noting that a lot of people when they saw a show in the venue and enjoyed it, came back several times to see other shows there. A big thing with free shows is punters finding the venue when there is so much going on. Once they've been and have seen how nice and comfortable it is, and the standard of the shows that are on - I noticed a lot of people coming back the next day or hanging around for another couple of shows. Several people saw me one day and then went to Sam Brady the next and vica versa.

Particularly on Saturdays, it is worth having someone at the back of the room if possible, just to tell punters when it's full etc. A couple of times people pushed in mid-show to try and find a seat, even when it was clearly full and that pulled focus. Clearly though - that's a nice problem to have.

This was my first year in the venue but now I know the lay of the land, I'd be happy to be the venue captain going forward as it's a great venue and I'd be well up for doing all I can to help out.
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