This was an interesting little coffee shop/cafe. It was cute and colorful. (And they had amazing delicious raw vegan cheesecake!)
(Full disclosure though on that seeming-cuteness: Late at night, once the open mic was done, the area seemed a little skeevy. I wasn’t totally afraid or anything, but there was definitely a sense of “protect yourself and get out of here.” …But if you want to be forwardly asked out by a bunch of smokers who make you feel a bit uncomfortable, that’s an area to go to!)
Aaaaaanyway… the group at the open mic was eclectic to say the least. Lots of different characters there. If you’re writing a play (or really anything about various humans), I’d totally recommend going to this (and I can’t wait to see what more open mics are like in the future).
Some people were more on the serious side, and trying to really be writers. Some were there just for fun. Some did poetry. One did music. Someone did some freestyle rapping.
Michael, the emcee, said he wanted the place to feel really open – that people should be able to experiment with whatever they want there, whether that be poetry or something else. He also said it was a taping-free environment, unless you got permission from the act to do that.
(He didn’t want anyone worried about what was gonna end up on YouTube or the like. Again, he just wanted people to feel totally free to experiment.)
If it was your first time, you (technically) got to pick your spot, and you got a little extra encouragement. (I say technically because it was super free-flowing. He’d kind of just ask between acts, “Who wants to go next?” So, in actuality, it wasn’t that helpful to have it be your first time… Still cool though.)
As far as my performance, I was a little shaky on the poem since I’d just written it that day. There was a music stand there, so you could read from it if you wanted. But what fun is reading to the audience, I thought. So, I went up there without a net.
Once I was up there, I realized how many different little sounds there were in the coffee shop (people talking in the back, sounds from the street with the door open). I should’ve been able to just focus on what I was doing, but I dunno. I heard that stuff.
I tried to perform my little heart out. I did get tripped up a bit on one of the lines, throwing off the rhythm I had in my head. (I know it’s not written as a straight poem with perfect scansion or whatever, but I had a rhythm I was going for and tripped up a bit. Wah wah.)
But overall, I think the idea got across. And people seemed to really like it. (Yay!)