ED2010 Columns ED2010 Comedy

But First The Noise Next Door

By | Published on Tuesday 31 August 2010

The Noise Next Door

Sam Pacelli from The Noise Next Door would like you to know that he’s NOT venue staff.

“Excuse me. Where is the start of the line for Tim Vine?”
“I don’t know. I don’t work here”.
This type of interchange has become a frequent occurrence at this year’s Fringe.

When entering into the comedy business a mere two and a half years ago, The Noise Next Door were advised by people ‘in the know’ to create an identity that would help make us more recognisable to the public and to distinguish ourselves from other sketch and improv troupes.

This we did. Gravitating towards slick and smart, black attire punctuated with brightly coloured ties has served us well so far on our foray into the entertainment business, and naturally JLS, The Saturdays and many others have followed our lead with coloured branding.

However, we seem to have made a rather huge inadvertent error. Our apparel apparently blends effortlessly with that of all venue staff everywhere. Ever. Add a lanyard to the smart black shirts, pressed trousers and impeccably double Windsor-ed tie and you have the managerial / security staff look apparently.

It’s not a problem when we’re together, in fact it’s quite the opposite, but when we find ourselves alone our daily Pleasance Courtyard experience can be a mixed bag. The battle for comedic recognition over mistaken identity has been rife. I’m as likely to hear “Great show last night” as I am “Sorry, can we take our drinks in to the theatre?”

I received an ear bashing this week from a lady who was furious about the lack of toilet facilities, and all I could do was apologise for the inconvenience on behalf of The Pleasance, explain there was a blockage in the sewage system and assure her that we were attempting to resolve the issue as quickly as possible.

On another occasion, a man approached me in the Dome one evening to enlighten me to the fact that someone had thrown up outside. The problem is of course, being a comedian, that voices wrestle in your head and urge you to abuse the position this innocent punter believes you to possess. Replying courteously with “Thank you. We’ll sort it” is not as amusing a response as “Yeh, it was me, crazy night last night. In fact I’m still drunk”

The plan for tomorrow is to be more proactive and pre-empt the questioning – we’re going start an imaginary queue for Pappys.

In short, The Noise Next Door are expecting a fee from The Pleasance post-Fringe for sending audience members the right way to Idiots Of Ants and detailing pint prices. To be honest, they’d probably mistake us for their own staff anyway.

The Noise Next Door’s show ‘Chaos Control’ was performed at the Pleasance Courtyard during Fringe 2010.

LINKS: www.thenoisenextdoor.co.uk