From London


An update…. So things have passed. I’m in London, and working in a bar, full time, and trying to earn enough crusts to get by. The big city is hard when you have no crusts, I’ve found.

 
(crusts)

The show is over. Ben Geldim Gidiyorum became the story of our lives – by our, I mean me, I mean Billie, I mean Anthony. We piled on too much pressure, and actually it was hard and much of it not that much fun. Sometimes we had a lot of fun, and then you remember why you’re doing it all. Touring the show was fun: performing is so rewarding even when making is not always. We did 5 shows in Istanbul: 3 at Talimhane Tiyatrosu, and two at Mekan.Artı. These were, for the main part, well attended by our mates and acquaintances, who seemed to enjoy themselves, and we also managed to attract a not-embarrassing number of people-off-the-street, which is in a way much more satisfying than having your friends come.

(However, the last show, and my & Anthony’s 2nd to last night in Turkey, was sold out by our mates, and that was brilliant fun.)

The UK was harder in a sense. Being in different cities, we always knew we were going to have some shows that we had no guaranteed audience for. You think, that that should be okay – I mean, we all go to see things on a whim sometimes, right – but when one has no reputation and is performing at small theatres it can be hard.

Our shows in Brighton were good. A good mix of strangers and friends. People came down from London to see us, and my and Billie’s families came all the way from Edinburgh and Norfolk respectively, which felt great and warm. The stage at the Marlborough theatre is possibly the smallest in the world, and Tarik, the man in charge, possibly the nicest man in the world.

Falmouth should have been brilliant, but was instead awful. I’ve never felt so exposed, in a way-too-big studio, in front of all of our dearest friends, with lighting cues going wrong, props being forgotten and generally getting lost on stage throughout. Perhaps its always the way? The people whom you want to impress the most are the ones you end up letting down… We’re going to have to make some fucking good work to make up for it next year.

And Cardiff. Well in Cardiff no one turned up. Really, really, really: no one. And no lights. We ended up performing our revised show – lit entirely by desk-lamps and torches, operated by Billie and I - at 9.30pm to a bunch of drunk people we found in the bar. A fitting end? Perhaps, actually. It was – in fact – a good show at the end of it all. Afterwards we had a sweaty hug, I nursed the mysterious cut I’d managed to get under my eye during the performance (still don’t remember it happening) Billie picked up her bags and caught the bus at 11.30pm to Gatwick airport. By breakfast she was back in Istanbul and is there still now, playing with her mighty band, Billie not on Holiday. Anthony and I enjoyed Cardiff’s best – or worst – fry-up the next morning before boarding trains; he to Falmouth and I to London.

 
(Billie, not on Holiday)