Lucy Land
август 2016.
75

What has been your worst gig?

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It isn’t usually the audience that’s the problem; it’s usually just one heckler. The audience is generally with you. If a gig isn’t working, it’s usually because there’s something wrong with the venue…

My worst gig was at Indian Summer Festival, the Netherlands, six years ago. They had just started including comedy in the line-up. I was in a tent directly across from another – it must have been about 200 metres away – which had a rock band performing. I couldn’t hear myself, let alone hear the audience. Everything about the set-up was wrong. I was on a really high stage and there were picnic tables set up towards the back of the tent that weren’t even facing me so it was as if I was the background to people eating. I tried to make jokes about the situation but it was really difficult because usually you surf off the reaction you get from the audience, but I couldn’t hear them – all I could see was a few smiles.

Eventually a guy came up to and asked for the mic. It’s an unwritten rule that you never hand the mic to an audience member, but I thought, what the hell – things couldn’t get worse. As the stage was so high I struggled to hand the mic over but by then I could hear the audience better than I could hear myself. When I eventually passed the mic over, all the guy said was, ‘You’re shit.’ After a couple more minutes I wound up the show.

The festival asked me to return two years ago but by then I had a new agent, and because the festival broke the terms of the contract (ie not having requisite chairs for the audience), I got paid but didn’t have to return.

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It isn’t usually the audience that’s the problem; it’s usually just one heckler. The audience is generally with you. If a gig isn’t working, it’s usually because there’s something wrong with the venue…

My worst gig was at Indian Summer Festival, the Netherlands, six years ago. They had just started including comedy in the line-up. I was in a tent directly across from another – it must have been about 200 metres away – which had a rock band performing. I couldn’t hear myself, let alone hear the audience. Everything about the set-up was wrong. I was on a really high stage and there were picnic tables set up towards the back of the tent that weren’t even facing me so it was as if I was the background to people eating. I tried to make jokes about the situation but it was really difficult because usually you surf off the reaction you get from the audience, but I couldn’t hear them – all I could see was a few smiles.

Eventually a guy came up to and asked for the mic. It’s an unwritten rule that you never hand the mic to an audience member, but I thought, what the hell – things couldn’t get worse. As the stage was so high I struggled to hand the mic over but by then I could hear the audience better than I could hear myself. When I eventually passed the mic over, all the guy said was, ‘You’re shit.’ After a couple more minutes I wound up the show.

The festival asked me to return two years ago but by then I had a new agent, and because the festival broke the terms of the contract (ie not having requisite chairs for the audience), I got paid but didn’t have to return.

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