Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Where Am I?

I'm starting to wonder where I am. A few gigs in the past weeks have clouded the issue somewhat, and I feel I'm caught between being a competent comedian, and being rubbish. My reflections on my gig at The Comedy Kav in Birmingham don't clarify matters. It has been many years since I was first there, doing one of my first ever gigs, and walking back in was an odd experience. It was considerably smaller than I remembered, but then I suppose rooms are an extension of your own apprehensions when you first start out. I went on and worked pretty damn hard for little or no real energetic reward, but I didn't feel hard done by, and didn't feel like I had done a bad job. Indeed, Mr Cook said afterwards that it had been one of the best supports he had seen there for a long while, which was flattering and unexpected. Apparently, the opener always meets with a subdued response. I hung around for the rest of the night, and the crowd began to get into it, and Ivan Brackenberry pretty much stormed it.

I went via the Reckless Moment again after that - losing all faith in the material I had prepared, and thus delivering instead a treatise on how not to write jokes to the crowd. This approach worked, but some of the stuff I thought would tank got some good responses, and I actually left regretting not having done it properly.

Then came my second weekend run at Jesters. Friday night I tanked, Saturday night was a delight. Therein lies my dilema. Why can I do so badly one night, so well the next? Admittedly I rushed through everything on Friday, had no confidence and wanted to be off stage as soon as I got on it - so obviously that was the huge mitigating factor. But come the next day, when my brain simply couldn't be bothered to stress about it anymore, I relaxed and did my own thing at my own pace. This is a lesson that I am finding hard to learn. I'm still very guilty of trying to go to a crowd, rather than bring them to me, and when I go to them, it smacks of desperation and they sense that as a lack of confidence. I went at my own pace at the Kav, in the face of apathy, and finished strongly as a result. I went at my own pace at Jester on Saturday, and everything worked like a charm.

Which leads me to conclude that I was guilty of trying to go to them last night in Nottingham. They seemed pretty energised and up for it, but I just didn't connect with them from the outset, though maybe I clawed back a little something, but very little, by the denouement. It was desperate I think.

So where am I? Shrug.
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