SHOW 14: 16TH AUGUST
“A riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.” Winston Churchill once famously said of this Edinburgh show. The more familiar I get with this show, the more it gets away from me. The more I work out what it is about the more I don’t know. Time seems to have a mind of its own too. It doesn’t matter what cuts or alterations I affect the show always comes in at the same time. So having cut out ‘Vegetarian’ since yesterday, the show is now exactly the same length as it was before. Perhaps I could cut out all the routines and it would still be an hour long?
It seems to ebb and flow to its own rhythm. I am noticing that I have a greater ability to get momentum going this year but not necessarily to maintain that momentum for the entirety of the show. I can also adjust delivery earlier on and correct mistakes although later on this would seem to evade me. This gets annoying at around the 45 minutes mark. It is a cliche that the audience dips at this time but that is probably bollocks as far as I am concerned. It is more likely that the comedian dips at this point. So perhaps it is pointless to play around with the structure and instead focus on the performance. Having jostled round the order as per yesterdays blog the show had the same shape and energy.
This is galling because today I ended on what I regarded as the strongest routine “Gaytown’ but to muted response. I don’t know why this is? It is either the energy of performance is dropping or they are getting confused with the narrative of material or I am alienating them at some point. Possibly ‘Millennials’ which went well and was particularly appreciated by millennials but certain routines just change the dynamic. Actually ‘Better than you’ maybe the crux of the issue? It changes my relationship vis-a-vis the audience in some way. There is a glorious conceited arrogance to it that naturally I am massively in favour of but perhaps there is not enough of a nod to humility in it? The whole show seems to be more “emotionally dependent” this year in terms of landing the routines. Of getting into them with the right emotion, of pitching it to that particular audience and of building it to a crescendo.
To be fair some of the transitions were botched as I was doing them for the first time ever today and this perhaps hit the energy too.
Still enjoying this show and it certainly hasn’t got stuck in a rut. Everyday there feels like some else to fight for. I met somebody who told me I was the “freshest faced comedian“ he had met at the fringe today. How many faces has he seen? I do have a certain buoyancy and love of this show coupled with a ongoing frustration with it. It has a certain irascible quality. I think back to the original order tomorrow then.