Mini-Cine, 12.05 – What About the Men? Mansplaining Masculi

Mini-Cine, 12.05 – What About the Men? Mansplaining Masculi

Postby Dave Pickering » 11 Sep 2015, 13:42


The space is really great for intimate performances. It has room for 20 comfortably and possibly around 30 at a push. The majority of the seats are cinema style and the room has a lot of character. It turned out when we got there that the room didn’t have its own PA as was expected but that was sorted out by our excellent venue captain Robin Boot and Harv who did the tech for PBH 2015 by getting hold of a small amp. The room (all tech, banner and extra chairs) needed to be set up every day by the first show in the room which was me (except on Monday’s). It was relatively easy to do on my own and the benefit of being able to set up at leisure vastly outweighed the responsibility of setting the room up right for the whole day. The only really issue the room suffered from was noise bleed from the other two shows (in much bigger rooms) happening at the same time. Robin and the VC’s for the other two rooms did some brilliant work sourcing duvets to help reduce the bleed and many of the people doing the shows helped to install these. Setting these up again each day was part of my responsibility as first person in. These barriers helped but couldn’t keep it out completely. I inserted references to the noise bleed into my show and dealt with it as best I could. Audiences didn’t seem to mind too much. I think it might be worth considering getting two duvets for the mini cine room next year as the benefits of getting rid of more of the bleed would I think outweigh the disadvantage of perhaps losing some latecomers, especially if we put up a sign saying late comers welcome or waited till 15 mins into the show before closing the doorway off with the duvet.

The tech setup as mentioned was very basic and many shows might consider not using a mic at all in that small room although I found for my show it was necessary, partly due to the noise bleed and partly due to the nature of my show. Since there are three shows happening next door to each other in separate rooms it’s really important to have people out there directing people and to find out what your neighbouring shows are. No lighting just the room lights which are bright but light the whole room.

There is storage for props and leaflets upstairs in the staff room.

The venue very kindly produced their own booklets and signs and did a brilliant job of getting audiences in. Although many of the mini cine shows were spoken word but were billed as comedy by the venue. This wasn’t too much of a problem for many of them as they were funny but my show was very serious and so I had to make sure audiences understood it wasn’t a comedy. I actually made this a talking point/selling point and the staff and other performers were really helpful and supportive in terms of helping inform the public.


I didn’t put my show in the big brochure and yet unlike my other show which I did put in the big brochure it was reviewed three times (and 2 of them were 4 star shows). I didn’t get big audiences although the ones I did get generally came on recommendation and put quite a lot into the bucket. Being on at 12.05 made it hard to get people in from flyering before hand as there were less people around and most people at that time know what show they are going to. I still did it though and having a presence outside the venue before your show is at least a good way of helping the audience who are coming to your show know about it. I also publicised the show through a strong social media presence, guest slots, exit flyering similar shows and flyering at my other show.

Largest audiences 20. Smallest 2. Averaging 7. Avarage amount put into the bucket £5 but I regularly got £10 occasionally £20. The small room feels full with not many people in it and the audience are close to you and permanently lit which I think helps them to feel like they should give you money, especially if there aren’t many of them and they respond to your show.


The venue captain Robin Boot was really great and all the VC’s involved at the Cabaret Voltaire were also really brilliant. The venue staff were supportive and the people from all the shows generally pulled their weight and supported each other which is very important considering the proximity of the rooms and the noise bleed issues.
Dave Pickering
Posts: 4
Joined: September 2014

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