The final Saturday of the 2014 Melbourne International Comedy Festival was also the final night of my solo show "Johnny Loves Mary Forever 1994". With only the Moosehead Gala tonight I am very close to having a proper week off from everything. It has been a great run but I haven't really had a day off since before I flew to India so I'm looking forward to seeing movies, reading books, catching up with friends and thinking about loads of things that don't revolve around comedy. Business will kick back in probably before I'm ready but while I can I am going to enjoy this time away. I wandered into the city early so I could stretch some comedy muscles at the open day for Set List. It was a great way to start the day and there was something quite interesting about it being my first gig for the day. Usually when I have attended Set List it has been at night after my solo shows when my brain in engaged in performance mode. To start the day with this show was like jump starting your car with a nuclear reactor. Here is a photo taken from the show with one of my topics:
After Set List I had planned on seeing a couple of shows but all the people I had in mind seeing were sold out. I was rapt for them but it left me up in the air. I checked the board and I was completely overwhelmed as to what to see. I suddenly understood how punters must feel and how a smart comedian with a little flyer skill can really help you out. In the end I grabbed a bite to eat and then attended my final solo show for the Festival. It was another sold out show and the set list for the final (for the immediate future anyway) time was:
Johnny Loves Mary Forever 1994
After the previous night being so fantastic this show was more than fine but lacked that electricity I had on the Friday night. I think it was my fault too. I was feeling fatigued when I walked out onstage and I think it was due to the fact that I walked into the city earlier than normal, had a gig and then way too long in between my first and second show. My adrenalin had dropped to a crawl and I was almost in snooze mode before my venue was ready. There was a bit a of jumping around and shaking of limbs to get myself back into performance mode and while the show was fine I lacked the vitality that I had the night before. I did manage to remember all the little changes I had made in the previous week so I was glad that I recorded that show. I'll be taking this show to Edinburgh so it is important to have a record of where the show ended up so I can listen back to get it back to speed.
After my show I was up in the Supper Room in the Town Hall as a guest on Wil Anderson and Charlie Clausen's live T.O.F.O.P. podcast recording. Charlie has been absent from the podcast since he scored the job on Home and Away and it was great to see the reaction the audience gave him when he walked out onstage. The way the night worked was that the show revolved around Wil and Charlie and then they brought some guests on who had filled in for Charlie over the time he's been away from the podcast. The guests were Greg Behrendt, Felicity Ward, Lindsay Webb and Scott Dooley.
The show was loose and fun. It is great to have so many people in the audience who are in on the jokes that we have thrown around without thinking too much. I especially enjoy the audience getting into the "I've never had a bad gig" comment I once made to Wil on the podcast. It feels like it has become a "thing" that we're all in on together. I'm not certain what I can say about this gig other than it was fun. I enjoy the thrill of walking onstage and having nothing organised. Just riffing with friends that are all amazing at their jobs is a lot of fun and at this brain dead stage of the festival I'm glad that it is all it is.
After the show I was thrilled to learn that the consistently brilliant Denise Scott had won the Barry, Wil won most popular, Ronny Chieng had won the Director's Award, Sarah Kendall had won the Piece of Wood Award, Stella Young the best newcomer and Fancy Boy the Golden Gibbo. I don't think I've missed anyone out but I'm big fans of everybody on the list and that is a triumph right there.
I'm tired today. One last gig tonight and then a couple of weeks off from the podcast and the blogs. Thanks to everybody who attended the solo show and/or The Shelf. You've truly made it a fantastic season and who knows if I'll be back with a solo show next year but if I am I'll do my best to bring you something that will hopefully enjoy even more.
20th of April, 2014