Gig 22: Checkpoint Charlie

Last night I was back at Checkpoint Charlie, one of the newer rooms about town that is produced by rising young comedians Mark Conway and Mike Nayna.  Every time I return to this gig it appears to be gathering stronger line ups and more punters.  Last night was no exception and it was a really fun gig from the get go.  My goal last night was to just have some fun by hitting the stage with no idea what I was going to talk about and see what routines popped out.  It ended up being an interesting mix of old and new jokes with the lesson that my new stuff has superseded the older material.  Here is the setlist:  

Set One

Biker Gig

Twitter and Felix

“That Won’t Get Him A Job.”

No Need To Share All Your Opinions

Tripping and Farting


Set Two

Tram Ride

Being An Arsehole

Little Boy Joke

Acid Story



It was interesting to have the Tram Story pop up, I haven't told that tale in a fair while after it was a regular part of my stand up for about 18 months.  The routine went down well but I didn't receive the same buzz from it that I used to.  It might be that I've moved on to material I find more interesting to perform.  There were aspects that were still fun (the description of the tram is an always fun section and the people noticing the commotion between the two characters is one of my favourite pieces to act out in any routine I've devised) but I hit the end of it and felt a bit like, "Okay, that still works, good to know" rather than having any type of buzz.  Also the Acid Story feels like a routine from such a different guy it is starting to feel slightly out of place in my current headspace. I found it interesting that it popped up twice this year as I really haven't thought about it in a long time.  Still it was good to perform a different set and with Evan (who runs the Barkly Hotel gig I performed at last night) sitting in the audience, at least he was given something new to listen to.



Once again the success of this night is down to the fact that both Mark and Mike care about every aspect of the room.  Thus they have cultivated a good following of young people who turn up to watch the show and not just for a place to meet up.  If you look at the photo above you can see a dude in the audience who is facing the camera.  He sat like that for the whole show, barely turning around to acknowledge the comedians on the stage.  He was laughing a lot but the fact that he didn't turn around fascinated me.  I didn't want to point him out because he could have just been shy, didn't think to move his chair or he was possibly blind and I was about to (ironically yet unintentionally) point that out to the rest of the audience.  These are the weird things that play through your head while you're delivering material.

The line up was an excellent one with Pete Sharkey, John Conway, Nat Harris, Geraldine Hickey, Mike Nayna, Steele Saunders and Luke McGregor all having excellent gigs.  Nat was the only act I didn't know as she is fairly new to the scene but I thought she showed some real promise in her short set.  The rest of the gang played around with some new material and had real success, especially Steele who had such great banter with a punter in the front row we were both concocting a plan to have him at all of Steele's gigs.

A fun night of comedy that shed some light on where I stand with some of my material, always a win when you can learn something new about your self.  That I did so while having fun with friends and a great audience makes it a big bonus.

Justin Hamilton

28th of February, 2013

Fitzroy North