I’m quite surprised in all honesty. Yesterday night I should have been on stage in Leeds but because of one or two things that happened in the preceding couple of weeks – the kind of things that you can’t see coming and just hit you out of the blue – the decision was made to postpone the show. And apparently, judging from the number of e-mails I’ve received to this effect in the last few days, I have disappointed quite a few people by making that decision. So I wanted to apologise. And explain.
I do not take cancelling shows lightly. I very much believe that when I say I’m going to do something, I should do it. But very occasionally, life does smack you in the face and make normal functioning quite challenging. Live performances are unique. While the same show plays in many theatres around the country and an audience in Leeds, for example, can expect the same show as an audience in London, no two shows are alike. Because different things happen and also my personal wellbeing affects the quality of the show. Occasionally, I’m just not up to it.
In the case of a wedding or corporate show, when calamity strikes, it’s standard practise (although to date, this has never happened) to replace myself with another magician I know to be competent and capable of doing the show because the client has paid for an entertainer and expects one. And my word is my bond. But theatre is different. You’ve all paid to see ME specifically. I don’t think you’d be very happy if somebody else turned up. So that wasn’t an option. And while I believe that doing what you say you are going to do is very important, there is one instance where that belief seems to come into conflict with another belief:
I think it’s extremely important that whenever I do hit the stage in front of a paying crowd, I shouldn’t do so unless I’m confident that at the end of the night, the audience is going to feel like their money was well spent and they had a great night out. I don’t want anybody walking out of my shows thinking, “That wasn’t very good.” And that’s got to be a matter of my own personal judgement. Because at this point in my career, there may be people who didn’t know what to expect and just dislike my style. And that’s fine. If they dislike me for artistic reasons, I can live with that. But if they dislike me because I just wasn’t very good, that’s something I have to avoid. So if I think there’s a considerable chance that that might happen, it makes more sense to postpone the show.
While you may be disappointed, I think you’d be more disappointed if I took your money and you thought the show was poor.
What I’m trying to say is that I’m extremely thankful that so many of you chose to spend your Saturday night with me and that I take that seriously. And that while it may not feel like that right now, I chose not to do the show last weekend, because I thought it was the best decision at the time, for YOU.
So moving forward. My team and I are working to reschedule the show. All I can tell you right now is that I will do a show in or near Leeds at some point and though I can’t say when yet, it’s likely to be after September.
But if you can’t wait that long, I’ll be at the Edinburgh Fringe for 11 nights from 2nd-12th of August. And I may be doing a couple more nights in London before that. Tickets to those shows are not yet on sale.
Once again, thanks for your interest.
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