Last night I was the host of the final night of Comedy Fightclub on Gertrude St in Fitzroy. Neil Sinclair is one of the producers of the room and is heading overseas to study. With his travels taking him far away for the foreseeable future it means it was time to close shop on this gig. That is a shame because I enjoyed my gigs there and thought the general vibe was always a positive one. I also liked that comedians would come along, put their name in a hat and wait to see if they were by luck performing. While it is disappointing for the acts that miss out it gave the night a point of difference. It also meant that anyone who was called up had a unique energy to their performance because they didn't have time to prepare like they normally would do so. I've had some specific goals of late with my stand up and I took these ideas into last night's performance. I'll show you the set lists and then delve into the ideas behind the choices of material.
Set List One
Riffing with the audience
The Dark Knight Documentary
How I Deal With Trauma
If I Were A Superhero
The Kid At Captain America
The Geeks Won
I Can’t Approach Women
My Best Traits Make Me Annoying
Never Act On A Crush
Set List Two
Biker Corporate Gig
At the moment I'm still playing around with some pieces of material for two different reasons. There is some material that I am working on that is for future use possibly in a show or at the very least routines I can work in the clubs. Then there is the material that I am attempting to develop to place in my solo show "Johnny Loves Mary Forever 1994" which opens at the Edinburgh Fringe at the end of this month. (For more details click on this link here.) A show can always be improved and there are little references that I need to change since they won't fly in the U.K. As an example where I reference "The Project" in Australia I will change that to something like "Q.I." These little moments can sometimes trip you up when you're overseas and I want to be across them as much as possible before I fly out.
I also believe that no matter how well a show has been received it can always be improved. There was a section of "JLM4E" (as the kids abbreviated online) that not only feels heavily Australian but the main thrust of the piece might be out of date by the time I start performing the show again. (It was a section that revolved around Robin Thicke's "Blurred Lines" which feels a bit like it is done now especially with his very embarrassing new album just around the corner) I want to take that piece out and replace it with a routine that not only works on its individual merits but also thematically with the rest of the show. At this point the superhero based material feels like it could be a new routine and the more relationship based stories have the potential to slot into my solo show without breaking the mould.
I'm also really enjoying performing the material about the corporate gig for bikers. I had forgotten how much fun it is telling that story and over the past couple of performances I've been ad libbing throughout the tale and finding a lot of new jokes. Since the story has a lot of characters it lends itself to a fun time on stage. It allows me to bounce back and forth between the story and the characters quite fluidly and that keeps it interesting onstage.
Overall it was an excellent end to a fine room that I believe was only just beginning to really cement itself as a good room to work. It takes time to set up a room but I am happy to hear that a new room called "The Hot Spot" will be opening in the space in a couple of weeks so keep an eye out for that. Hopefully over time it too will develop a good reputation and will go on to be a room that delivers cracking comedy for a number of years to come.
4th of July, 2014