The day I had done down at Broadclyst School back in February had apparently been a bit of a success. And a success to the extent that the lovely lady who organised the school day, Calli Walkerdine, decided she wanted me to come back and do an evening show for the parents! Well, who was I to argue?
From my place it takes about an hour to drive down to Broadclyst, just outside Exeter. It is a pleasant drive as well, mostly through beautiful countryside on the Somerset/Devon border. I was warmly greeted at the hall by Calli and introduced to various other members of staff and other halves from the school. I set up my props on a table and about 80+ seats were set out. I wandered off to get changed as I was due to start the show at 7.15pm. By half past seven people were STILL arriving and more and more chairs were having to be set up to accommodate them all. How nice! Well the evening went fantastically! Such a great group of people - they loved the show, lapped up the silly jokes and asides and really joined in brilliantly. Wonderful. I did my usual "Henry's Horrid History" talk but threw in loads of asides and some improvisation as well, and had them rocking in the aisles, which was very gratifying. We finished the evening with a very silly jousting tournament - one adult male, one adult female and two children, one boy and one girl, per team. The chairs were pushed back and the event took place. Great fun, particularly as the head teacher from the school was on one team, first endearing himself to the audience by going base over apex during one part of his run, and then cheating on the second half and getting his entire team disqualified! Loads of laughs during this point as well.
The evening finished with deafening applause and Calli insisting she pay me more than we had originally agreed as I had "been so excellent". How can you argue with someone like that? The drive back was very nice along quiet country roads. But it is always strange to finish a show, with a big audience and feeling the love and warmth of that audience, but then come back to a cold and empty flat. That is something I shall never get the hang of... :-(
FA Cup Final this weekend, so COME ON MANCHESTER CITY! We need to win our first silverware since 1976! Fingers, eyes and legs crossed. Next Henry show is on Wednesday at Birchfield Junior back in dear old Yeovil.