Here’s a behind the scene’s short video form the TV ad I did for Lancashire Magazine a few weeks back, I’ve never done anything ‘blue screen’ before. There’s a bit in the advert about a gold bar and we had a proper gold bar on set, with a fella charged with guarding it so I couldn’t pocket it. There’s also a bit where I stick my face in a plate full of mashed potato. I wonder if that bit will make it to the final cut.
Commercials can be stressful as you’ve got to get a lot done on a tight schedule, this ad was was shot by White Noise, and they were great. Really easy going. The ad is going out on Granada telly on the ITV channels in late August and through the late summer.
2013 started with a series on incidents. The back window of the car shattered in the cold. the wife shattered her ankle playing roller derby and after eight years me and my agent sat down and had a nice frank chat and decided to go our separate ways. Oh and I’ve got a new kitten called Enid.
Eight years is a long time, the longest commitment I’ve ever had to anything outside of family and my own body parts, so leaving my agent felt like a terribly sad but inevitable separation. No contract was ever signed, just a handshake and a gentleman’s agreement in an Edinburgh flat back in 2004, feels like yesterday and a lifetime ago. That’s all the was needed. He helped me get established on the circuit and I used my visual nouse to make his new business look all shiny and sexy. The early days were great and fun. Today I’m married with mortgage, and a very different comic. People change, and we both had. I’m a little bit sentimental, it’s sad not to be part of it anymore. No arguments about money, no showbiz tantrums. Oh actually no – there was that incident with that one club that probably didn’t do me any favours. it wasn’t a tantrum, just me and my principals being jostled about.
The recession appears to be slowly encroaching on the comedy industry. Not all of it, just some. There are a lot more chancers and mercenary knocking about, loads of good new act and perhaps not enough stage time for everyone.
I worry, I’m a doubter. I suffer from a habit comics have that I’ll only ever hear bad opinions and silence, not the the good one and laughter. If there’s a room of people laughing because of what I’ve written and said, I’ll focus on the knarly faced old cock who’s not smiling or responding to any stimulus of life. I nearly sold out my Leicester venue this year, but felt the need to mentioned to everyone how much better it was than in 2007 when no-one turned up (I’m doing it now!).
I think doubting is good. If I only ever heard good feedback I’d very quickly become a massively egotistical intolerable dick. Comedy is full if dicks, it’s just is. I worry, but not about decreased stage time, or less gigs or badly run gig or chancers, mainly because I’m a bit different, and an bit odd, so I don’t feel like I’m competing with a million other comics, oh and also because even though Danny Pensive might appear innocent and nieve, I’m probably still a slightly egotistical dick.
John Cooper, Comedian & Improviser. Public speaking workshops and training for UK businesses. Dealing with public speaking nerves and providing confident focus through unique and entertaining workshops