Thursday, 26 July 2018

From Leyton to Guildford

It's been a while since I last posted but after a frantic month the dust has finally settled long enough to tell you a tale of two previews.

The first was at The Leyton Star and was both our only London show and also our fond fairwell to Bear Jokes. Come September we're Londoners no more so running a night in zone three didn't make a whole lot of sense. To make it extra special we took the big room, set out a few rows of chairs and enjoyed a fantastic first half MC'd by the mighty James Harris. Ali Woods, Jonny Gillam and Lenny Sherman all put in sets worthy of a final night and the slightly overheated crowd responded in kind.

The second half preview was well received and nearly every member of the audience crew ended up doing something at some point to express their first world problems. The larger room (and therefore stage area) gave us plenty of space to pull some unlikely dance moves and post-show it was time for drinks at the bar and discussion around gentri-fried chicken. A new comedy night is planned for the venue come September. Keep an eye on their Facebook for more news on that.

Two nights ago FWP made its way to Guildford. Best known for its university (which I attended), it's Omen-featured cathedral (which I probably went to once in three years) and the UK space program (yes, there is one); its comedy festival has yet to make the same impact but it's well on the way with plenty of shows and high-profile acts. FWP is not one of these as yet but as we found ourselves on the cover of the program and rampantly tweeted and re-tweeted in the run-up things looked pretty positive from the off.

As it turned out our numbers weren't about to break any box office records but our Surrey-based crew were keen, able and ready to laugh about songs involving kale. Performing on a full live band-ready stage complete with monitors was a new experience and a pleasant one at that - even if the tech's tendency to use vast amounts of delay and echo effects on the vocals did throw me initially before I embraced it for its Wembley Stadium leanings.

The crew were chatty and Anna J went into the audience with her mic to ask questions like the host of a well healed version of the Jeremy Kyle show - something we'll definitely keep for our similarly sized and setup room in Edinburgh. The show ran smoothly enough to look like we knew what we were doing but loosely enough not to resemble a staged musical. In short, a big win!

Edinburgh Festival now looms. See you at Espionage Kasbar!