I’m on a train speeding through Sweden. Sweden is white, white white. Tonight is the penultimate performance of Something Dark my one man show in a city called Hasselholm, (pop. 28,000) in the south of Sweden. It’s three an a half hours from Stockholm by train. Sweden has a population of 9 million people. About sixty percent live in the capital, Stockholm. London alone has 8 million.
The venue are pleased to have sold out – about four hundred people in all. I am slightly surprised at this. But it turns out that the audience was mainly school children. There is a subtle but fundamental difference between an audience who feel obliged to be at an event compared with an audience who are compelled to be there. Something Dark is not a play for school children.
After a few embarressed laughs I realised it was a down hill ski and the motorway was at the bottom of the hill. It got worse for me. The play started fifteen minutes late. At the crucial ending to the play audience members started to walk out. It killed me. At the quietest most tender part of the play – the conclusion of one and a half hours of one man on one stage – the audience started to leave. All I could hear were doors closing and opening and all I could see was the three or so doors of the theatre opening and shutting. It’s never happened to me before and was excruciating to watch from the stage while acting the play.
Later on I was told that the last train from hasselholm was leaving and the audience had to catch it. If we hadn’t started fifteen minutes late the timing would’ve been perfect. AGGHhhhhHHhhhhh.
Though all the feedback was positive and though I sold all of my books I am not happy with it, not happy at all. I trudge back to my hotel feeling angry and a little like shit served up on a platter. I am told that I can be over critical but if I am not critical then who would be! And where would I be then!! I have to be up at 7am tomorrow morning . I am in a hotel in a different country and i just want to go home and sulk!