We just finished producing an audition showcase for a reality show for a major network. Our most musical cast members and other favorite comedians delivered self-penned jingles for two casting girls from L.A. who now sit at a table in the back to see our talent in their natural habitat.
I set out the swag and Tootsie Pops and Dan made a bunch of awesome little red ChUC buttons. The camera is set up and I'm sitting behind it all Cecil B. DeMille, ready to mechanically record and remix another round of laughs and insights from our comedian-philosophers.
It's so cold here today (hello, June, are you just around the corner?) but I have been feeling slovenly, despite frequent bike rides and trips to the gym, so I minimized my producer\editor's pack to ID\credit card, lip gloss, cell phone (from which I blog), and camera\tripod.
Everything fits neatly on a bundle on my back. Well, not that neatly. The tripod is jammed through the arm holes of my backpack, rendering me probably a foot and a half wider than I would be ordinarily. This is important when you consider Chicago drivers are only required to give you four feet of space in order to pass you on the road.
I drove through Cubs game traffic in Wrigleyville on the way here. Cones and traffic cops and drunk baseball fans everywhere.
The feel before the show always says a lot about how the show will go. The room right now is relaxed. Laughing and chatting with anticipation. The comedians who already did the network audition are not nervous, since the uncertain part of the evening is already behind them.
I am at a crossroads in my own comedy development. I sit in my comfortable perch in the back, a part of things but separate. Integral, and overseeing, but invisible. Already thinking ahead about editing video and trying to get more recognition for this pool of talent. Getting email from a festival producer who has seen for herself that something good is brewing in Chicago and it's not just all the local beer.
P.S. I was right - it was a great show. Highlight reel to come.