A Travellerspoint blog

Singing in The Rain

All By Ourselves

rain

Well;

A Hello from a very soggy Edinburgh. Yesterday proved to be a very wet day. A simple little mist followed by some rain
wasn't enough to dampen anyone's spirits. We are all working hard to get and build our audiences. To give you all some perspective,
the weather does nothing to stop people from seeing shows and wandering on High Street. Yesterday I had many errands to run, to trade my amp,
pick up papering tickets, pick up our star adverts and gather the cast to staple 3,000 flyers. In the midst of this, the cast and I went to see CITY LOVE, a show at C Cubed. It was a cautionary tale of love in the city of London with 2 outstanding performances, the ending was a bit of a downer.

I should mention we bid farewell to Jill and hello to Rebecca our last Chaperone. Jill did an amazing job as always and was a dynamo in helping
the kids market the show properly. She will be missed. We hired Yvette from our Venue to help Rebecca run tech last night and Rebecca indicated
that she picked up everything pretty much. Tonight Rebecca runs tech while Yvette watches her and corrects any errors. Last night brought a surprise as Broadway Baby came to see the show. Broadway Baby is one of the big reviewers and has traditionally been tough on us, so I look forward to seeing what he thinks of this show.

We performed in the pouring rain on High Street, which was not at lot of fun.

Off to flyer!!

Cheers

Paul

Posted by geekthemusical 06:10 Archived in Scotland Comments (0)

Rainy Days

Rainy Days and Mondays always get me down

rain

Hi All;

Edinburgh has arrived! We received our first torrential downpour yesterday. Until then, we had been in the grips of a blessedly dry
trip. Yesterday, my rain gear came out as I traveled cross the city. The cast worked hard yesterday to get us an audience. We begun the day with 2 and ended the day with 21 seats in the house. Much of it was done through hustle, target marketing and just working the crowds. We lost our High Street performance yesterday to the weather. This is the very first time in my years here that that has occurred. In fact, in the past I have had to perform in torrential downpours. I believe they used caution because the stages are using power and amplification for the first time and they don't want to take any chances with the artists.

We are hoping for better weather today, but outside it looks bad. Last night, we had a bit of a dead show. The show previous to ours cancelled because they had no audiences. We came in and our energy was just not right. I spoke to the cast last night and they admitted that they had a tough performance.

We were given a High Street Performance today at 5:50pm and I am hoping that the energy and crowds from that will follow us
into our space. The cast went to see some shows yesterday in an effort to lure the performers to come see our show, it was some what successful.

Today we have had printed 3,000 pieces of paper, which celebrates our reviews, the cast and I will be stapling them to ALL our remaining flyers and posters. We are now in our final stretch with 6 performances remaining. I want them to absolutely rock.

Posted by geekthemusical 23:37 Archived in USA Comments (0)

The Last Review

The Night the lights went out on Geek

Hi All;

We are now in the gut of the Fringe. It is said that The Fringe is like a sprint and a marathon combined.
The Sprint aspect is that every show shoots out of the gate in search of a toehold into the audience and
the reviewers. The Marathon aspect is the endless amount of promos, mistakes, and hills (literally hills) you
have to overcome in order to do your work. You cannot let you guard down, because it is very easy to have a
misstep and just fall. To give you some perspective, on a busy day I average over 10 miles walking and do about 19
flights of stairs, add the back and equipment strapped to my back and the constant banging into the huge crowds
and you get a taste of what walking through the Fringe is like.

Today, we marched over to Princes St to perform at M&S and we just rocked the street, I mean literally, as apparently
the lady running the sound was either deaf or did not care and the sound was cranked. I kept looking around waiting for the Police
to arrive but we kept going and did our whole set. We all got back to The FLat and headed over to C Aquila for a new sound check
and that went off without a hitch. The sound was great! Now here is the trap of the Fringe. You start believing that you have got
it tamed and it just reaches out and bites you hard. We got a stellar review from The British Guide which quoted "With its strong narrative and likeable tunes, this is a promising new work which, with a bit of money and development, could be something special."

So we headed over to the theater with heads held high and excited. Now we had been working all day trying to build an audience and we were expecting 11 and that is what we got. We set up like pros and were quickly ready to go. Our 11 people all came in and sat down and we prepared
for our opening moment. Ethan came out to do his sermon and nothing. the lights never came up. Low and behold, we had lost lights and although
Jill was bringing up the cue, nothing was happening. Ethan began his sermon in the dark and Jill worked to give him some lights. The rest of the show continued with a constant struggle as she worked tirelessly to provide us with light when appropriate and also are blackouts. Our final issue came at the end when Gibby gets shot. Jill took us to blackout but then could not restore anything. Finally she brought up the finale light as Ethan came on
and she kept us in that light all through the finale.

Needless to say, I was unhappy and spoke to the Venue about it. Sigh. Another day at The Fringe.

The cast did an amazing job staying focused and continuing with the play!

See ya tomorrow.

Paul

Posted by geekthemusical 13:40 Archived in Scotland Comments (0)

Climbing Every Hill

A Good Day

Hi All;

The problem with doing promotional appearances is that you never know if they are a
waste of time until you do it. On this trip we have done Marks and Spencers (worth it),
C Variety (Late Night Rubbish), The Wee Pub (50-50), Novotel (Useless), High Street (worth its weight in gold)
and yesterday we added C Royale at the Royal Society of Edinburgh in New Town.

Our day started with Jill and Steve taking some of the kids to climb Arthur's Seat, which is always lots of fun and
completely exhausting. Olivia met up with me around noon and we began our travels to New Town and C Royale.
The trip over is fun as it is completely downhill, however what sticks into the back of your mind is the painful return journey.
Olivia and I arrived in the very posh C Royale and were amazed at how gorgeous this Venue was. We were taken to this Salon to perform
our set. This is all being done for charity, the audience is not charged but encouraged to donate to a cause "Children & The Arts. This is
a cause that is very dear to my heart. Olivia and I started with two tables of 5 people total. I had even joked that it was going to be a private
concert and I would take requests. We began, and Olivia is such a powerhouse singer that within our 25 minute set(The entire concert is on Instagram), every table was filled and we had a standing audience of over 80. I occasionally would look up and be amazed at the thunderous applause we received. It was just hard to believe that this 17 year old could hold an audience like that, but she did. We both left the performance on a cloud. I treated her to a bespoke cupcake and we began to climb home. The Playfair Steps are a killer, as they gradually sap you of your will to live as you climb then. The previous night Steve and I walked up these stairs from Grassmarket to Johnston's Terrace, The Castle Wynd Steps. They total a grueling 187 steps up and twist and turn as you climb. I did this with a guitar and music books strapped to my back. Oh dear God.

Upon our return from New Town, Olivia and I prepared for our second set at The Wee Pub. The rest of the cast was flyering in an attempt to boost our ticket sales of 4 for Thursday night. Once again Olivia delivered a great set at The Wee Pub to an nice group of people. We then climbed up from Grassmarket to High Street for our third performance of the day. I have been making friends with all the High Street Stewards in an effort to get them to give us some volume when we perform. I have also been a stickler with the kids about being early, extremely polite and gracious in the face of
some rather difficult situations. When we arrived some group was doing sword fighting with sticks (very badly) and had no audience. This makes your work harder as you had to build an audience. We finally climbed up onto the stage at 5:10pm and the steward just cranked up the volume and the kids just absolutely rocked our performance. Some of our friends from THE MAGIC HOUR came by and clapped and cheered and the entire audience of about 300 people clapped and cheered as well. God that felt so good. Steve went to get a coffee in a local Coffee shop that he loves and he told us he could hear us loud and clear. He even availed himself of the loo and it was heard there as well. For a musician it so amazing to play loudly, you can almost touch the music. So this was a fun set.

Afterwards, the kids flyered some more and we headed over to our show (4th performance for this tired old man). We had started the day with 4 and it had grown to 14 throughout the day. Imagine our surprise when our audience came pouring in and we had 42 people last night. We had the casts of 89 Nights and Aquapella attend. The cast was juiced and our show just rocked. We had laughter throughout and every appropriate moment and in fact the show ran later because of the applause and laughter. At the end, after the last song, people were actually sobbing and crying. It was just magical. We got a huge ovation at the end and the cast absolutely deserved it. I told the cast that they absolutely delivered a 5 star performance that night. We had worked so very hard and they deserved to celebrate the fruits of their labor.

Today we awake with a fire in our belly to take on the Fringe with our little commando squad and kick some ass. We start the day with an audience of 1, so we have a ways to travel before 7:05pm.

Cheers;

Paul

Posted by geekthemusical 00:13 Archived in Scotland Comments (0)

The Scotsman

Hello, Goodbye

Hi All;

We had a pretty emotional day yesterday. Before I begin that, I want to first talk about Adrienne Viscardi.
Adrienne was our first Chaperone on this trip and she was amazing. Besides managing the kids, she did it
with humor, grace and a smile. She was also the tech person for our happy show and she was outstanding.
She made mistakes, but never let that define who she was. She was always striving to improve and when she
had problems, she never panicked, she sought help and delivered to the very best of her abilities. She genuinely
cared about the production and doing the best she could to support it. I am forever grateful for that.
A sincere and heartfelt thank you to an outstanding person.

Yesterday, we began to get our reviews. We had earlier received a twittique from Fringe Biscuit that was totally positive but
only gave us 3 stars, I felt greedy and wanted 4 stars. Next up came a rather detailed review from Fringe Review, but it picked apart
the show and while I believe the reviewer enjoyed herself, it felt more like an autopsy. Here at the Fringe, unless you are a big budgeted
show it is hard to find true perfection. The environment here is more about adapting to impossible situations and instead of folding, overcoming
the challenges. As a Director/Producer I am constantly looking at the situations and making decisions both artistically and budget wise, that
will help or hinder my production. Ultimately, I am taking into consideration that I have young actors, and how much strain am I putting them under.
While I want them exposed somewhat to the fire of the Fringe, I prefer to take the brunt of it on myself. I was disappointed with the Fringe Review as it highlighted some of the choices I had to make and pointed them out as failures. We also got a review from the Fest that was totally positive. That helped a bit, but I was still sore about the previous review. Not wanting to show that in front of the cast, I kept a brave face. I was wondering when are other reviews were coming, I spoke with the brilliant Matthew Shelley (my friend and our publicist). He encouraged me to pull our report and see
who had come, so I followed his advice. Low and behold I found that the most sought after and important reviewer had come to see our show, not once but twice. The Scotsman is the holy grail of reviewers. I have been coming to the Fringe since 2007 and I have never gotten more than 1 star with any production. In fact, the earlier incarnation of this play (Gibby Stone and Her Problem) earned a 0, yes 0 stars. My heart exploded when I saw that we had gotten 3 stars from this reviewer. She wrote "While the mismatched group of people on stage significantly outnumber the two of us in the audience, this only adds to the (deliberately) outlandish mood of George Griggs and Paul Andrew Perez’s quirky new musical.....Tebsherany has a beautiful voice, which, along with th on-stage band, makes for toe-tapping tunes out from tales of not fitting in.........it’s fueled by wild imagination and good-humoured asides.........it’s a reminder of how a low-fi aesthetic needn’t limit large-scale ambition." I was in Seventh heaven. It was an incredible validation to the work that George and I put into this piece and to the dedication and commitment that this cast put into the play. I have never been prouder of any cast, than this. To top off our day, our friend Derek Newlan came and gave us 5 stars from the Derek Awards. We also had our biggest crowd and met some lovely people from the UK whose show we are going to support today. Also, the delightful Jill Bazos and her family arrived. Jill is a bundle of energy and experience and is just so much fun to be around. While we will dearly miss Adrienne, we are also excited to have Jill around.

Olivia and I were also invited to perform at the Royal Society of Edinburgh's fundraiser for Children and The Arts. Olivia will be performing some of her musical set she did at the Wee Pub and I will be accompanying her on guitar.

Today we are all going to see our new friends perform and we have another Wee Pub as well as a a new late night performance at Sweet Novotel called Pic and Mix. It is at 8:30pm, so it should be fun.

Posted by geekthemusical 22:12 Archived in Scotland Comments (0)

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