Usually when I have a gig in the evening I spend the entire day worried, feel sick and have the urge to flee, extremely quickly. So it works to my benefit not to know about a gig until late so when Binty let me cover him as compere for the Pros and Coms gig down Lark Lane I didn’t really have enough time to get too stressed about it or plan too much.
Compering is very different to doing a normal set, for one planning becomes much less essential but attention to act names and maintaining a good pace and flow to the evening is very essential. It’s liberating in a bit, I mixed my usual material with whimsy but that freedom was great. I’ve had conversations with a few people about my tendency to go off on a whim at points (which I love) rather than sticking to my set (which I love less) – so this played to my strengths.
My favourite m0ment was playing off a guy with his parents with a crude fisting joke and then using a terrible pun to finish it off (gerrit?). I think it let me use some of my improv skills but in the best scenario – I’m not a very good actor but addressing and breaking the 4th wall to get to the audience is much more my thing.
But plenty to work on:
- I need to look at remembering acts names better (i had a few moments where I lost their surnames…)
- I need a couple of set pieces to have as backup and to use to make sure moments that drop pick up quickly.
- A way of helping musicians and poets to get on comfortably.
- Make sure I don’t overstay my welcome (which I did once…)
- Find a good ending that leaves everyone on a high, kind of petered out tonight, rather than a strong moment.