I learn a lot from chatting with our audience members. Knowing where people have travelled from and where they went for a meal before they came tells me how we're impacting local businesses. Or how they heard about the gig lets us know which bits of our marketing is working (or not).
At the interval though I always change tact and ask "So... whaddya think?" And mostly people ooze with enthusiasm at that point. Which is great, of course - that's what we want. But I actually really like it when people say the unexpected...
On Saturday everyone beamingly told me how wonderful Flash Harry was... except one woman, who memorably said, "Yeah they're all right, but to be honest I prefer Ska. Why don't you ever have any Ska bands on?"
"Who would you suggest?" I said (doing my best to avoid admitting the only Ska band I could think of at that moment was The Specials!).
It was then her turn to try and think of bands that might be known enough to pull a crowd but not so big they wouldn't fit on our stage....
We were both saved by the start of the second half but it left me thinking... What types of music are we not doing that we should be doing? Is there a demand for something we're not meeting?
I'd love your thoughts or suggestions: [email protected]