So you may have read some of our previous blogs about some of the funny or negative things Entertainers experience at gigs, such as our "What Annoys Entertainers Most". Feel free to click the link and take a look if you have missed that one. But all in all, most Entertainers will tell you this is the best job in the world. All of us at You Book Entertainment will tell you the same. So read and find out about those totally unexpected surprises that dont happen at gigs often, but it's great when they do !
THE CLUB STEWARD OR MANAGER SIMPLY WELCOMES YOU.
Sounds simple enough, but how may gigs have you been on where you have to walk into a strange venue and try to find someone? Strolling up to the bar and saying "Hi I'm your Entertainment" with a response of "Oh are you, the manager isn't in tonight" is really not a good starting point. But to have a club steward or venue manager welcome you on arrival, shake your hand and ask if you had a good journey, makes you feel truly welcome from the very start!
EARLIER FINISH THAN WHAT'S ON THE CONTRACT
Yes we are all Entertainers and should want to be on stage as long as possible, but an early finish is always welcome. Even more so when you have driven miles and you can now set off earlier. It doesn't happen that often but normally happens like this. You double check with the club steward what time you should go on, how long each set should be etc? You also discuss with them the time you understand you must finish by, based on your booking contract. You are finishing at midnight right? But the response is that this isn't correct as they only have an 11:30pm license and ask could you go on a little earlier instead, or have shorter breaks? You tell them this is no problem at all! Now you are performing for as long as you thought you were anyway, and still will be home earlier too!
HELP GETTING YOUR KIT IN
Not only has the manager welcomed you on arrival, they also ask you if you need any help getting your kit in? If they are not able, they call over some of the regulars to help you. Some entertainers will refuse this offer, but this is normally due to the slight fear your kit may be damaged or for insurance reasons. More often than not, you need your kit bought in, in a specific order too and any help may disrupt your routine. Either way this is a great offer whether you take it or not. If you do, this help will enable you to set up so much more quicker and with respect, if you are a young lady who has travelled to a gig alone............absolutely fantastic!
THE OFFER OF FREE DRINKS ALL NIGHT
Further to the welcome you have just had the manager of the venue will ask what you wouldl ike to drink and get it ready for you. Or you find that you are in the middle of setting up, and a drink will be bought over for you anyway. You offer to pay and the response is " Don't worry its free" and so will all drinks be free that you consume throughout your gig. Free drinks are always welcome and a sign that this venue knows how to look after their visiting Entertainers.
CAR PARKING ADVICE
Upon your arrival to the venue, you have seen that there doesn't seem to be anywhere to park your vehicle once you have unloaded. You may also be aware of this from having checked Google Street View before you set off, and wondered where your vehicle will go? But don't worry there is plenty or parking advice given to you. This is either from the owner of the venue who tells you that the church car park across the road is always empty, or there will be a couple who are regulars and know the area inside out. This couple will advise you that you wont get ticketed this time of night if you use Sainsbury's behind the building,becuase they use it every week!
A PARKING SPACE BECOMES AVAILABLE ANYWAY
After all of the advice given above, you are sat in your vehicle ready to drive round the block to Sainsburys; before returning inside to get changed. But to your absolute joy, a car pulls out opposite the venue and drives off. Parking problem sorted, one of those nice surpises in life and you begin to believe this is going to be a really good gig!
A PLACE TO GET CHANGED
What more can we say? The holy grail of any gig and the thing you have been wondering all the way? The club steward says those immortal words to you "We have a changing room if you would like to use it" Whats more this room has a radiator in it, Comfy Seats, A table and one of those mirrors with lights around it, where other acts have placed their pictures. OK one of the bulbs may be out, but who gives a toss? This is a changing room and a place you can call your own for the evening. Also a place of sanctuary for you during the interval that you can check your phone in peace, whilst subconciously bitching about the other acts photos. Somewhere you can escape the bingo and having to sit with a random family explaining your life........ and what is that you see in the corner? Is that a fridge?
THEY GIVE YOU APPLAUSE AFTER YOUR SOUND CHECK
You have just finished warming up and just tested your sound in the room with a song from your backing tacks. Remembering not to use one that you are doing in your set of course! You haven't even completed the whole song because you just don't need to and slowly fade it out. You hear the people that are in already give you a clap and even better, a voice will say "Carry on" This is a great feeling as you know they like your voice before you have even started. There is always a few tables that look at you as if to say, have you started already? You politely thank them and tell them you will be back on later.
THERE IS ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE WHO LIKE TO HOST THE NIGHT
They are not the club owner or manager, they are not the steward either. This person is simply someone who has been involved with the venue for years and with respect, normally an elderly person. You can tell they used to be in the industry in someway, maybe ran a club of their own and this is their way of still being the person they once were. It is lovely when they come and speak to you at the start of the evening and tell you who they are and how they will be bringing you on! If you need anything they are your contact for the night and they know where all of the electric supplies are. They are the most organised person in the room but still manage to get your name wrong when they introduce you, even though they have confirmed it three times with you previously.
YOU SEE SOMEONE YOU KNOW!
This is always fantastic when it happens. Someone you know or recognise will come and say hello to you either before you start your first set or after. The more rarer case is you see someone you used to know as a child or where you used to live back in the day. Either that or they know your parents! Sometimes people who have seen you in another venue have come up specially to watch YOU as they heard you were in. Either that or their Social club where they saw you before, has sadly been shut down. But that doesn't matter, these are real fans! Then there is the occasion when a family or someone who used to regularly visit the holiday park you worked on, will come and say hello. This is always great as you can talk about old stories and when they used to watch you. You can also share what you have been doing since your "dressing up as a mascot days" You always ask "What are you doing here?" With the obvious response "We live in this area!" This is just brilliant as you feel you have family in the room and you can almost be that holiday park entertainer again, for one family at least and for one night only!
YOU CHANCE MATERIAL AND IT WORKS
Everything is going great and you have established that everyone in the room loves you. But the average age of this venue is above 50 and you know for a fact your next song is a more recent chart hit! Right now you have a full dance floor, but is the next song going to clear it? What with the fact it's getting late, this next song could be the "Time to put our coats on and leave song" You bravely chance it and don't change up your set. You start to perform the first few lines and the people on the dance floor do that thing where they look at each other and wonder if they recognise it or not, mixed with the look of "Should I sit down?" To your absolute joy they do know it and throw their arms in the air and what's more, more people in the room get up to dance. Those who don't know this recent chart hit continue to dance to the beat, totally unaware they are dancing to DJ Sammy's version of Heaven
PEOPLE WAVE AT YOU WHILST YOU ARE PERFORMING
This is just lovely and sometimes unxpected. People will be getting their coats on and setting off earlier than some. They haven't danced all night and you wondered if they liked you or not? As they walk towards the exit they have to pass where you are performing.............then they smile and wave at you! They also mouth "Thank you" to you as you are still performing. You wave back, smile or nod if you can't verbally respond at that specific point. Maybe these people didn't have the confidence to dance or maybe couldn't for health reasons. You realise they silently have been appreciating you and are proof that, just because people aren't always resonding; it doesn't always mean they dont like you!
ENCORE AND ANOTHER
This is when you know you have done the job and pleased everyone all night, also the room is stil full and they have all stayed on after the bingo. You have something lined up for an encore and of course you are ready for the shout of "More More", ..............don't assume this happens to all entertainers! But they have cried to you for more and off you go, full dance floor again and despite being tired, you don't really want this to end. This is the best buzz for any entertainer, mixed with how it is a shame it's about to finish. But what's this, they want another one after your first Encore song! So off you go again with a second, whilst telling them "Ok this really is the last one as I have a bed to go home too"
PEOPLE SPEAK TO YOU AT THE END
It sounds so basic, but for more than one person to come up and thank you at the end is the best feeling in the world for any Entertainer. The club steward may have already thanked you and given you your money, whilst telling you how much they enjoyed you; but it feels so much better when the people who have paid to come in thank you too. They tell you how good you were and how much better than the rubbish that was there last week! The most obvious indication they are being genuine is when they say to you "You will be back here soon, we will make sure of it" Sometimes the clear down at the end can be such a lonely thing, but these club regulars remind you why you travel around the UK every weekend and work in the Entertainment Industry ! ! !
Enjoyed this article? Click the image below to read our next
IF YOU ARE AN ENTERTAINER AND WOULD LIKE TO BE REPRESENTED BY YOUBOOK ENTERTAINMENT, CLICK HERE TO ADD YOUR ENTRY
IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO FIND OUT MORE ABOUT US OR HIRE ANY OF THE YOUBOOK ENTERTAINMENT ACTS CLICK HERE AT www.youbookentertainment.co.uk