brian regan

Brian Regan upsets me

I don't know why this is bothering me today, but it is.  Erin and I went to Brian Regan in SLC when he was here a month or so ago.  I'm not usually much for stand-up because of the type of degrading and crude humor that is often involved, but Brian Regan is the exception.  I went into it daring him to entertain me and he did.  He stood up there and kept our attention for 75 minutes straight. Completely amazing.  What a talent.
The part that upset me was the lack of artistic preparation involved.  His "set" consisted of a tall stool, a microphone, a couple of water bottles and a large, low-quality video screen that allowed the huge crowd to see his facial expressions as he skillfully played us.  There was a big, ugly black curtain drawn width-wise across the length of the stage.  That was it.  ... That was it.

If you charge $50 per ticket, someone ought to be thinking of the entire experience and how to make it awesome EVERYWHERE.  It would not have been difficult for someone to come up with some small, appropriate set piece to help set some kind of mood or background for the show.  There was nothing visually interesting included in the "production" and coming from a world where we bust our tails to make sure that every aspect is fun and appropriate and entertaining ... that kinda makes me feel ripped off.

It's my own fault of course, since I bought the tickets, but to be honest, I don't think I'll go again the next time he's in town.  It was not a significant experience.  Entertaining?  Yes, but forgettable.  Not enough creativity included.  "Guy stands in front of people and is awesome at telling a bunch of jokes in a row."  Pretty amazing from one viewpoint, but the lack of effort in other areas upsets me.

Here's one of my fave quotes of all time from fashion mogul Christopher Burch:

"Every single thing we do is broken. When you look at a drug store, it is broken. Why? The shopping environment is not good. They don't understand how to place products; packaging is not effective and beautiful. I'm using that as an example, but everything in the world can be much, much better. I think entrepreneurs have a great opportunity to think of how to make things more understandable, simple and beautiful." 

This applies everywhere, but especially in the realm of live entertainment.  Come on, Brian Regan, give us more than we expected.  Try to give us more than we paid for.