Ideas have a life of their own like socks, and remote controls. One moment you’re in the Pleasance Courtyard in 2010 chatting to punters and saying “Wouldn’t it be funny to do a big show having sold all the tickets by hand?”, the next you’re sitting in Melbourne trying to work out the appropriate price point for tickets to a performance in the Sydney Opera House.
The goal of Comedy Sale Australia was to see if I could do a show at the aforementioned Opera House because, well, that’s a good question? Mainly because it seems ridiculous. Me (no name stand up) playing the Sydney Freakin’ Opera House, AND selling all the tickets by hand. It doesn’t seem right, does it?
Somehow all those factors wrap around each other, like extra dimensions in a string theory universe, to create a flavour I like the taste of. For starters, I get to play in the most famous theatre in the world. That wasn’t even an ambition when I started stand up. Like a man going for the first January jog of New Year’s resolution fitness kick thinking: “You know what? The Olympic marathon looks like fun. Ludicrous.
And, let’s face it, I shouldn’t be playing there. I live at home with my Dad. I have carry an extra pair of socks in case it rains (because my shoes have holes in, and it’s easier to put on dry socks than fix footwear). My cupboard looks like Alexander Fleming trying to grow penicillin in cups of tea.
But I thought of doing one hand sold show and now, on September 25th, I will be playing in the House. There are just some logistics to sort out – the logistics are more complicated than I thought. It turns out – and who on earth would have thought this? Not even the smartest woman in the world I’d wager because no one could see this coming – the Opera House is quite expensive to hire.
What? That’s a MASSIVE surprise.
Which leads to the question posed in the title: How much should I sell tickets for?
The one problem with a no name comedian playing there is that I have to sell tickets at no name comedian prices. There’s one thing selling a ticket to strangers for $20 but after that it gets trickier.
I definitely don’t want to lose money on the gig (that would be bad). I want to set up a self-sustaining business (I try to be ramen profitable (that is a great essay – read it)). But I’m not in it for the money either. This is for the ‘Why the hell not of it?’.
All this is a round about way of saying that costs dictate that tickets will probably be between $30 and $35. Is this too expensive? What are your thoughts? What else could I do?