Underground Comedy Club

Underground Comedy Club presents Andre Vincent (part b)

As I am sprinting down the street, I realise I have forgotten the bloody mic, therefore I have no idea which converter I need.

Shit!”

I race back, grab the mic and sprint out again. In 7 mins I get to the shop. In exactly 30 secs I have gathered all the wrong things and need help from the assistant to find the right ones, before he tries to get me to buy a few random useless objects by the till for a £1! Why do they do that!

Ok, I’m on my way back to the venue. The sweat is now pouring down my face and my t-shirt is a much darker colour than is was a few mins ago.

I burst into the venue room… ahhh people are already in the room! “Double shit!”

I look at the clock: 7.32pm! Right, focus. I quickly plug everything in and we are good to go. As I collapse into my chair I stare at the portable speaker/PA system… “I hate you!” I shout, as 3 people suddenly walk into the room looking a little confused! Ahh! Could this get any worse!?

Luckily it didn’t, in fact it turned out to be our best night yet!

Iszi Laurence was our MC for the night, she looked relaxed and in control, she seemed to not worry if people were still getting ready or still chatting to their chums, she just introduced herself onto the stage and got stuck in. People soon realised that the night had started and got to their seats pretty quickly.

Iszi Laurence performing at the Underground Comedy Club

Iszi Laurence performing at the Underground Comedy Club

Iszi had clearly been here before and was interacting with the front row, second row and even the third row, no one was safe! It was great to watch, and very reassuring that the night was going to be a good one. I felt very relaxed with Iszi on stage as I laughed quietly to myself about the mega panic behind the scenes moments before the night started! She said everything was going to be ok and it was. Thanks Iszi.

I looked at my clicker and and it said 45 people, christ this is the most we have ever had, and they kept coming. At the end we had well over 50 punters through the door. Crumbs, I might even break even!

Neil McFarlane was our opener for the night and I was interested to see this guy in action. I’d heard several things from other pro comics about his material and knew I would be in safe hands.

Neil McFarlane performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

Neil McFarlane performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

He was good, really good. I never knew Glasgow had an underground like London, so the set was funny and educational.

Ed Caruana and Dave Bailey were our middle guys, semi pros doing 10 mins each. I was also supposed to be on in the middle as well but bottled it and decided I would go on just before the main act in the third part.

Before Ed went on stage, he looked relaxed, really relaxed, almost horizontal in fact! He walked on stage and continued in this rather laid back way. Though what came out of his mouth was simply gold!

Ed Carunana performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

Ed Carunana performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

His observation of rice, showers and working from home were brilliant, his links were the best I have ever seen at the Underground Comedy Club and I feel after chatting to a lot of the audience this guy might have stole the show!

Dave was up next and it’s tough to follow a really good act, though he happily did his job. The audience liked him which was brilliant, It is always a bit of a gamble having non-pro acts on the bill as the audience can be a little harsh on them as they get compared to the pros. But tonight was not one of these nights. All the acts were great and the night flowed very well.

John performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

Dave Bailey performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

Finally it was time for myself to get up there and as usual I was happily shitting myself! Performing in front of a bunch of strangers is OK as you can quietly slip away into the shadows to fight another day. Tonight friends and family were in the audience including my mother-in-law! So if this didn’t go well I would be the guy who tried comedy, thought he was funny and failed!

That fact that I was about to try out material I have never tried before was not exactly helping.

As usual before I realise what’s happening I was walking onto the stage!

Armed with my slide show of ‘Baby Madness’ and not much else. I ploughed into my set. I had no idea how long the set was, nor did I know if I was going to remember any of the links! This could quite possibly be the worst night of my comedy life!

I had turned to my wife in the interval earlier and asked if she though it would be ok if I didn’t perform?… she calmly said “Now Dan, there are a lot of people who’ve come tooight to see you perform, so if you don’t, they will never come back! So it’s not ok… ok?” 

My material was the weirdest yet. As I am having a baby in Feb 2015 the fear was creeping in and as a result I’d written my material about new ways of feeding, cleaning and surviving having babies! This involves such ideas as using a shotgun to feed twins, stealing babies from local maternity wards to practice on and offering intense weekend courses for parents to help them handle the random needs of babies!

It was a fun set! Phew.

The slide show happily played up throughout the whole gig and I kept forgetting the next bit, especially the punchline! But that seemed to just add to the set! Crumbs, was I improvising!?

Obviously no one really knows what is rehearsed, what is spontaneous and what is seriously going wrong! As that could be part of the act! (Christ I never seem to get any photos of me on stage!)

Andre Vincent performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

Andre Vincent performing at the Underground Comedy Club Notting Hill

The night was closed with Andre Vincent. He is a super nice guy and was really happy to be there. His impression of a Newcastle chick in high heels walking along cobbles was priceless.

What a great night, thank you everyone, amazing how it started so badly and turned out so brilliant.

Dan Tambling is a stand-up comedian, sketch comedy writer, actor and producer of ‘12 sketches in a London house’. This is his blog.


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