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Battling

In this past week, I have battled two very different but nonetheless challenging rooms.

The first gig was in Windsor, where I was opening. The audience were mostly middle-class and middle-aged, and they were hard work. It was difficult to get them going and there was an awkward atmosphere. They went for some of my stuff, but really didn’t go for other bits. Material that I can normally depend on didn’t raise much more than a chuckle or two, and I had to work really hard just to get that level of response.

The second gig was in Brixton on a Friday night, where there was a microphone and stage at one end of a very busy bar. Only about 15% of the people were initially listening to the comedy, but with persistence and no other real alternative, attention figures reached the dizzy heights of around 35%.

For my set, I decided the best tactic was to be as loud as possible, compromising any subtleties or nuances for brash volume. I like to call this the Langton Technique.

It was actually very enjoyable and in difficult circumstances I managed to extract a respectable level of laughs. It has actually made me think about using this approach in quieter gigs, because I think I perform better in this heightened state.

The reason I have taken almost an entire week to write this up is because my usual weekend writing spot was shunted in favour of a trip to Portsmouth. There was a small gathering of my group of friends I went to university with to mark the ten years since we started there.

On the train there, I passed through Havant, where this crazy comedy odyssey began.

The reunion was everything you would expect from a university reunion: lots of alcohol, then denying and accepting age.

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