One of my friends was performing in a comedy night at the Fullerton Hotel, and I hadn’t seen him for over a year, and he put me on the guest list, so how could I refuse?
The show was in the Post Box bar, which was almost as far removed from a suitable venue for comedy as you can get. There were seats for about half the audience, so the rest were left standing up. There’s two enormous pillars in the bar, blocking most sight lines to the stage, so if you already not in a relaxed state of mind and ready to enjoy yourself, you’d find it even harder to concentrate on a comedian when you couldn’t see them.
Of course, even in front of the pillars you’d still have problems, because there was no proper light on the stage. The front wall of the bar is a bank of windows into the atrium of the Fullerton, so the comedians were silhouetted against that, and the actual bar itself is so brightly lit that you could see the booze better than the performers. You could probably hear the bar staff better as well, as the sound system wasn’t up to much; not loud enough, and too distorted to make out much of what was going on.
Oh, and they didn’t turn the TVs off until into the second comedian’s set. What with that and the high ceiling of the room sucking away most laughter, it was a pretty harsh and unforgiving environment for comedy. And the booze was insanely expensive. Eventually I fled to Clarke Quay for more booze, and away from all thoughts of one-liners.