Corporate gigs and doors

No sign of Hex yet.

I’ve been back to being a corporate stooge. Smart clothes and a top hat. Show up at The Globe. Do a thing. Make it nice. Have some wine. Go home.

Ffion and I have done similar things many times. The hardest thing is the learn. Once they are learned they become about delivery and nuance, something which is ultimately about the audience when it comes to Shakespeare text, even if it’s a hotchpotch. We know the deal, we are unruffled, we show up and we make things go well. I remember the first few times I did things like this and it felt like it was super important. I suspect I put off clients by asking them about the nuance of delivery… Our job is just to get on with it.

I remember one corporate gig where I had to just man a great big bookshelf door. The other side of the bookshelf door was a desk where people had to be signed in. The door was excellent until it was opened when it became “oh and now we need to sign in.” a WELCOME TO NARNIA? ADMIN.

I had just let twenty people through the door and they were literally just the other side of it signing in when the producer – I can’t remember his name so I’ll call him Powdery Joe Cokeface – he came to the door with like twenty VIPS. I knew if I opened the door then his important delegates would just be queuing through the door, which would then be wide open, exposing the artifice and making everything they had built look shit. I then had the invidious position of extemporising reasons why the door had to remain closed whilst powdery Joe was demanding in between chews that I just opened the fucking door. I ignored my employer knowing that the experience of his guests would be better for it. I defied him, knowing that I knew better in the moment what would work. When I opened the door finally it was perfect timing, the queue had died down. Coke-face and his hokey friends weren’t in a queue for ages cos they’d had me doing whatever about Phileas Fogg. Still, Cokey Joe never stopped making me feel like I had done wrong, when actually I had added value to what would have otherwise been a worldbreaking queue through the open door. That’s coke for you.

Powdery Joe… He never let the delay at the door go, like I had held them up in order to do the talking instead of doing the talking in order to hold them up. Like I had no eye on anything other than the literal task I had. I can’t remember him too well now though, powdery Joe, but I can tell you with certainty that he was a total jerk. He recently appeared mid drunken night. A card carrying official state sponsored Jerk. I think he might even have been the same jerk who supervised me throwing out about four crates of beer post gig in a weight paid for dump because it would be “unprofessional” to do anything else with it – like take it home. I might have conflated two asshole producers in my memory, because a certain white powder homogenises people. I think they might have been one person. Who knows. I have done a lot of events over many years, and now my instinct is good enough to steer me away from the likes of Captain door-twat. Chances are he’s got no septum by now and a ravaged face. I wouldn’t recognise him or care to. I had a lovely time with decent people at The Globe tonight.

Author: albarclay

This blog is a work of creative writing. Do not mistake it for truth. All opinions are mine and not that of my numerous employers.

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