It may be the mantra of estate agents but I think it equally applies to the theatre world too;
Location, Location, Location.
I was invited to a fringe venue this week and the location chosen is what ruined it for me. The cast performed valiantly, but I couldn’t stay for the second half as the venue was cold, visibility awful (I was only three rows back!) and as it was under a railway bridge the frequent trains rumbling overhead made it difficult to hear the cast despite them projecting fully.
Perhaps on a sunny summer afternoon it would be better but on a cold and wet October it was grim.
I’ve since found out that heaters are being installed and hot drinks are now on offer. So it appears the producers are responding to the audience (and casts) needs. Which is a good thing.
Now I know a fringe venue isn’t going to reach the salubrious surrounds of the Royal Opera House, but I think the audience should have had some warning. Numerous fringe venues or site specific theatre does warn the audience and forewarned is certainly forearmed and makes for a more enjoyable experience.
I also wonder why so many theatres still in the 21st century have uncomfortable seating that is more akin to a torture device than a seat designed to be sat in for 60+ minutes at a time?
I shall be returning to the anonymous venue later this month, lets hope the heaters are working, but I’ll wrap up and take a flask of something warm just in case. Wish me luck.