Thursday, November 20, 2008
This is me. The last two nights I've had little sleep. The first I was worrying about the countdown to my first ever standup gig. And for the second, I was happy it was over and so high on andrenalin.
The feedback I've received tells me the gig went well. The disparity between the way I looked (laid back and calm--of course I wasn't) and sounded (smooth and somewhat lugubrious) and what actually came out of my mouth caused a few gasps in the audience. There are no parentheses for the last part.
For the last 15 minutes before going onstage I went to the loo on average once every 3 minutes. Every gulp from my water bottle was followed a rapid exit. My main fear was: would everything in my mind exit the same way too?
Then there is the terrible realization the compere has said your name and it's time to take the tumbril to the stage. Thank god the lights were so bright I couldn't see the audience. Once I'd finished my wrestling match with the microphone stand I began to find my rhythm and the next thing I knew I was getting ready to wind up. I knew I was going to need a lot of rehydration, but not water this time.
Looking back and thinking about the last 10 weeks of the course and all the rehearsing we did, we all thought we knew the high spots of our acts. But once you are in front of the audience, it doesn't work that way anymore. Suddenly you hear laughs in places you considered, well, OK. And the high spots weren't quite so high. Strange creatures audiences and you have to think of them as an organic mass rather than individuals.
The eight of us who made it through out of the original 12 who started had a fantastic time. Chris Head created a great course. We arranged for the entire gig to be filmed and we think the DVD should be ready around mid-December.
Looking back you begin to see how that particular bit could have been done better, that bit could be shortened, and change that word. And then you start thinking about the next time...