Yesterday I performed my 22nd show on the ABC Tour: V is for Van. Unpredictably, this turned out to be one of my favourite shows on the ABC Tour so far!
The day started out as a bit of a disaster. We went to the van hire place a few weeks ago to book a van, so we knew we would have one on the day. I arranged to pick the van up at 8am with Anton and Dan. We get there, and there is no van. They don’t have a van for us. They forgot to put it in the system. I am not going to mention the name of the van hire company as that’d be unprofessional. But I am never using them again! A week previous, I had written letters to all of the elderly people on my cul de sac inviting them to a show in the van at 10am. It is now 8am and we do not have a van. We then didn’t end up getting a van until 10:30am. The van was too small and didn’t have a tailgate (which we specifically needed!). So the day started off as a mess. 10 points to Anton for dealing with van stress.
Thanks for nothing van hire place!
The people on my cul de sac were very understanding and waited for the van to arrive. As soon as the van did arrive, we gave it a quick clean (it was filthy!), and then loaded my equipment and my audience into the van for the first show. The day went from bad to fantastic in a matter of 10 seconds. The first audience were so nice and encouraging. One of them even popped a thank you letter through my door at the end of the day.
After this we headed down to a local nursery where my friends Loz and Mark had organised for the children and parents to get into the van for the second show. This was chaos, but good! Toddlers aren’t into what I do, I know that. But it was fun to try and entertain them for 15 minutes or so. AND we only had one child cry. Not too bad.
Our next stop was to Circomedia; Bristol's No.1 circus school. I didn’t tell Circomedia that I was coming, and also didn’t tell any of the students. I arrived at their lunch time and told a few people “in 10 minutes I am doing a show in this van, get as many people as you can”. The students did not dissapoint. I really wanted this particular show to be uncomfortably full. I wanted to have the van doors closed, I wanted it to be uncomfortable, and I wanted it to be hot. It was all of these things, and the students coped with it incredibly well. A fantastic audience they were too. We managed to irresponsibly get 28 people in the van for this particular show. Madness.
Finally, I really wanted to try and entice some strangers into the van for a private show. I am aware at how this sounds, but I was doing it from a very innocent angle. First we went to the Avon Mead retail park. Here we had no success. Even just talking to the people made them bristle. Dan had the suggestion of heading to St Werburghs and hanging out in the Better Foods/Scrap store car park. This way we would meet artsy folk and the more alternative Bristolians that I personally adore! Dan was right. We asked 4 sets of people, of which 2 were just very happy to hop in the van for a little show. Thank you to those people of which I’m sad to say I’ll never know your names.
Even though the day started of stressful because of the un-named van rental place, overall, the van shows were a massive success. Thank you to the elderly people in my cul de sac for coming to my show and for posting a thank you card through my door. Thank you to Loz and Marky for organising a show at the nursery. Thank you to the 26 fantastic students at Ciromedia that we crammed into the van, with the doors closed, for 20 very sweaty and claustrophobic minutes. Thank you to Rob for lending me the lights. Thank you to the random people who we managed to entice into the van for an impromptu juggling show, whos names I'll never know. Massive thank you to Dan for filming in incredibly uncomfortable situations, and Anton for driving, sorting, dealing with stress, and just doing everything else.
By the way, the van company was Gullivers. www.gullivers.co.uk
In other news, we have a new ABC tour video! S is for Snow. Check it out here. Let me know yours thoughts on it.
In 2 days time I will be performing W is for Window. Details below. I still really need someone to film and help out for this as Dan and Anton are busy. If you are free, let me know. I’ll buy you lunch.
And, a new announcement! We have a new date on the aBC tour. Here it is. X is for Xmas market. I will be doing an Xmas themed show. Put it in your diary! It’s going to be a good one.
That's all for now.