20.15 David McIver: Stop It David We Are Having Too Much Fun

20.15 David McIver: Stop It David We Are Having Too Much Fun

Postby davidmciver » 06 Sep 2017, 13:54

I had a great time in Southsider this year doing a character comedy show at 8.15pm. I was also the venue captain.

The room seats about 35-40 - there's space for six rows of five chairs with extra seating on a padded bench along the side of the room. I thought the room was a good size, cosy but with a reasonable amount of space to move around on stage.

There isn't a spotlight or any kind of specialised performance lighting in the room. We all pitched in and bought a £48 spotlight from Pegasus Sound and Light at the bottom of the royal mile. The men in the shop were kind enough to make a DIY stand for it, using a bit of wood and a screw.

We stored props, flyers and posters at the back of the room, rather than in a separate room. It did get a bit messy at times and it meant you couldn't get anything while a show was going on, but it was basically fine.

The staff were friendly and helpful. We were allowed to put flyers and posters up anywhere and they encouraged us to plaster the windows with posters to make it clear from the outside that it was a fringe venue.

The pub was usually pretty busy but more with Edinburgh locals than a fringe audience. I tended not to invite people from the pub into my show as I was doing fairly weird character comedy, rather than straight stand-up, and rightly or wrongly I assumed they weren't really my audience. Instead I flyered around Assembly George Square and also opposite Nicholson Square. I paid a flyerer to help me out and I found this very useful - it boosted numbers and allowed me to relax and conserve my energy a bit more while flyering.

The biggest drawback with this venue is probably the fact there is no door - instead there is just a curtain separating the performance space from the bar. There is some noisebleed, which I usually didn't notice but I think it was more noticeable to audience members, especially those sat nearer the back. I didn't find the noisebleed too much of a problem, except for one or two Saturdays when the pub was very loud and busy and I more or less had to shout the show at the top of my voice (I don't use the mic).

I think I averaged 20-25 audience members per show, lowest was 10 and had a few full days (usually weekends). Throughout the month my buckets averaged at £74 per show.

Overall I would recommend this venue - the room and location are good and I had a great experience there. I'd only warn against it if you are doing the type of show that would be seriously ruined by a small amount of noisebleed.

Most of the other performers in the venue were lovely and offered help whenever it was needed. Special thanks to the performers from Galpals, Laugh Begins at Forty, Ships, Rory O'keefe, Jestlife and Dylan Dodds for helping set up and pack down the venue.
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