Well I recently turned 29 which is scary as I had just got used to the idea of being 28. The day after my birthday I was suffering a little with a hangover, this combined with my 6am return home from the casino, I won 100, left me feeling a little shattered. Then my phone rang and it was Malky from Pop-Up Comedy. He asked my plans for the night. My plans involved trying to remember the night before and watching a movie over a nice earl grey; however in an attempt to sound more 19 than 39 I said I was considering going out. He said great and offered my first fist compering spot.
Woody the compere
I’ve been performing magic and comedy to a high standard now and always fancied a shot at compering. It’s a real challenge as you have to be on your toes the whole night. It’s something I’ve said to people I could do but haven’t actually done before. Could I talk nonstop nonsense for a whole night and have people like it? I said, “yes Malky” and that was it, in 4 hours time I would be a compere at the Bier Halle on Suchiehall street in Glasgow.
However, then I heard who would be headlining – Des Clarke from the radio and T.V. This was intimidating – as I’ve gigged with Des before; but that was 8 years ago when I was doing my first ever gig for the Glasgow University Medical Ball. Back then I was scared of everyone but there was no way I was going to entertain I professional entertainer. Let’s zoom forward 8 years and now I’m compering for the first time with a hangover, 3 hours sleep and for the first time in a long time I’m feeling pressure.
I arrive at the Bier Halle on Suchiehall street for their comedy night. To my delight Allan Park, the comedian, was performing and we work well together. I spoke to the acts and asked Hamish how long he would be performing for. He said, “between 5 and 7 minutes”…I wrote down 6 which made me laugh. As I was about to start I was nervous as the room was a bit dead and empty. Mothers’ day had reduced the audience to around 12 people – normally around 60.
So I did my sound check which I managed to turn into a piece of comedy so I was happy. One of the acts, Jordan, was going to film his act and make it into a video blog. I couldn’t quite understand this as the room was empty and his stuff works better with a busier room. So he gave me a convoluted thing to say about him – “google the amazing adventures of a stand-up comedian” the next day he changed this to his name doh!
All the acts done ok, nothing spectacular but I could feel myself running out of steam, the magic was going down better than the comedy to be honest and by the time I introduced Des, I really should have been fast asleep.
Light bulb moment
I remembered, I hadn’t told anyone how I was too nervous ( how I S&AT IT for the Glaswegians reading this) to perform for Des and he wouldn’t remember me anyway. So I proclaimed to the audience that after the break there would be more magic, free pizza, a confession from moi to the headliner and an amazing headliner. The idea would be that I would create a priest and a confessional box type of environment and that would create lots of moments for comedy…it didn’t. I was too tired and my brain was numb. So I built the crowd up with magic and then totally killed the audience with the confession – doh!
Conclusion Compering is hard work!
Lots of people said I done I really good job and the next day my Facebook had lots of nice comments which is nice considering there were hardly any audience. Magic works really well in compering but I needed a little more comedy just to let it fly by. But this is the first step in a long journey for me and it’s a step in the right direction.
“You feel the way you do because of the thoughts you are thinking”