This is it. In two days the curtain will be going up on my first London run. I’m doing 15 shows over three weeks. It’s ten shows shy of the run in Edinburgh; the theatre is the same size; I know the show back to front; but I have never been more nervous. I’m not scared of the critical response, I’m proud of the work, and I know it’s good. I’m not scared of the audience response, I did it in Edinburgh to good responses and Edinburgh crowds, due to fatigue, poor weather and risk-taking, are often the toughest to please. I am scared about getting an audience.
I did two London runs in 2005 with Aisle16, one for our show Powerpoint, and one for Poetry Boyband. Both shows did well but a lot was down to getting a good time out review early on. Plus, back then I was still living in London and going out a lot, I had loads of London friends and acquaintances to call on, as did all the other Aisle16 guys. Living in Norwich I feel cut off from London. Despite lisings, mail outs (so many mail outs), Facebook invites and the fact that I am so much better known than in 2005 I feel like this is only still really happening in my head; that when I step out on stage on Tuesday evening it’ll be just me. And I’ll forget my words. And I’ll be naked.
Ok, so none of that will happen (might still consider doing the show naked). I’m being pathetic and needy. Well, that’s the way it works. That’s how the ego gets its own back from constantly being stretched to breaking point. Ironically, this egotistical boom and bust cycle is what the show is about in many ways. The thrust of the material would seem disingenuous if I were performing it to a sold out west end theatre. So I should count myself lucky that the world’s indifference to me allows me to maintain the artistic integrity of the show 😉