The Bedroom Philosopher: Comedy Festival
Hey I'm just gonna pop down and get this year's Comedy Festival show, do you want anything?
Me: Hey I'm just gonna pop down and get this year's Comedy Festival show, do you want anything?
Me: Anything else?
Audience: Nah that's all.
Me: Don't want a storyline or anything?
Audience: Um. No. Oh…maybe.
Me: Just a little one?
Audience: Well, not necessarily, maybe just like, repeat something in the middle and at the end.
Me: Oh yeah, [writing down] call backs.
Audience: Yeah, it doesn't have to be much.
Me: [writing down] …will seem more clever than I am…
Me: Nothing. Right, so no pathos then?
Audience: Nah, just jokes and call backs.
Me: Ok. Multi-media?
Me: Audience participation?
Audience: God no.
Me: Character shit?
Audience: Does it have jokes?
Me: Possibly, providing it doesn't compromise my theatrical motives as deep down I'm a frustrated actor.
Audience: Probably not then.
Audience: Are they you doing twenty different ones over the same four chords?
Audience: Don't worry about it.
Me: I rhyme Wikileaks with stickybeaks
Audience: Sure, maybe a couple.
Me: Um, what else, are you sure you don't want complex tech-heavy interactive stuff? Me talking to myself in the future via a pre-filmed webcam? What about a series of letters from a famous celebrity that's just my mate doing a Mr T impression with reverb?
Audience: Again, actual jokes will be more than enough.
Me: [writing down] Just jokes…
Audience: Actual jokes.
Me: Are you sure?
Audience: YES! Now go, I'm trying to Watch Two And A Half Men.
Me; I hate that show.
Audience: At least it's got jokes.
Audience: What? What's your problem?
Me: I dunno, I just thought you'd want more from your comedy.
Audience: More than jokes? What else is there?
Me: You know, a good comedy show should challenge your idea of mainstream ideology, it should reflect your world in a refreshing yet thought provoking way, it should make you laugh but also make you cry.
Audience: Sounds awful. That's what work is for. Listen dude, you have no idea what it's like for us do you?
Me; What do you mean?
Audience: Have you ever been in the audience?
Audience: Of your own show?
Me: Well, no.
Audience: Think about the magnificent symmetry of organisation required to wade through the comedy festival guide, find a show that will suit the polarised tastes of myself and my partner, secure a babysitter, fight the brain sizzling frustration of peak hour traffic, settle on a restaurant and fluke the timing to find the venue for an evening show. By this point, just how much challenging do you reckon we need?
Me: Um, I dunno, not heaps?
Audience: Amid the thicket of internal frenzy, toiletry aches and the pungent steam of modest air conditioning, how sweet do you imagine the sound of a well conceived, structurally sound, masterfully delivered joke?
Audience: And how often, pray tell, do we, the paying public, get this, consistently, over the hour?
Me: It's not easy.
Audience: I mean, what exactly is your aversion to jokes?
Me: I just think, you know, too many of them can be a bit…
Me: A bit, I dunno "comedy 101."
Audience: And what does that mean?
Me: It's just a bit predictable and easy. I mean, it's a comedy show, so of course people are already expecting jokes.
Audience: And this is a problem how?
Me: I think a few jokes are okay, but I also think that a comedy show can be about skilled writing, acting, vocal performance and music with lashings of political and philosophical overtones.
Audience: May I ask, have you heard of cabaret?
Me: Okay! There's no need to be mean.
Audience: I'm the AUDIENCE, you know how it works - individually we're sweet, intelligent souls, but collectively we're a malicious bunch of tactless oafs.
Me: I'm not sure why I let you move in.
Audience: You need us. Now, off you go. When you get back I'll make apple crumble.
The Bedroom Philosopher performs new show Wit-Bix in the Melbourne Irrational Comedy Festival. March 31-April 24. (No Mondays) Trades Hall. 9.30pm (8.30 Sundays).