Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Stand Up In Geneva

After today's series of presentations (some good, some grinding) and a team building event where we had to build a tower out from sheets of A3 paper, we were bussed over to the Geneva School of Hotels, where students waited on us.

This was a bit odd, as various youngsters would arrive with trays of food, and then look vaguely amused/bemused that I couldn't eat the delicious meaty goodnesses on offer. Still, I survived. I was then pulled from the crowd at nine, and with a quick intro from the Senior Vice President, thrust out to entertain 120 people.

It was an awful venue. Twice now I've performed from the top of a staircase to an open-air audience, and the intimacy you have in the squalid, cramped basement of the Take Out Comedy club is something that you miss when it's not there. Still, it was a forgiving audience, and one I could play with: a flurry of Swiss jokes, a bit of Hong Kong material, some more Swiss, a fish joke, a resurrection of my old Craigslist material, and then a vague finish.

But people laughed: it wasn't my most solid 10 minutes ever, but there's a level of forgiveness built in, and they did laugh. And then come up afterwards and tell me how brave/polished/funny I was. Which is very nice to hear. I did have that vague feeling of terror beforehand, which I've missed recently, but it's good to know you can do this; ten minutes in front of a crowd of co-workers is probably easier than the same in front of a drunken rabble. Maybe I have got some talent... Although one of the people I knew from London told me she was surprised: I never seemed like a stand-up back then. Itz's odd; it feels so much part of me now I forget what it was like not to do this. What a gift.


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