The Story Behind Laugh Kingston
It all started in August last year when John Gower (Omni Local) came up with an idea to find a different way to raise money for Love Kingston and make it an annual event. His spark of madness was to set up a yearly comedy festival….The problem was he was alone in his idea, and then one night in a dark crowded room (The Rubicon Bar, in Surbiton), John approached Dan Adams (Wild Card Comedy Events) who has holding a comedy night. After a boozy conversation, John managed to convince Dan that it was a great idea….(I think the beers had a little play on this). Dan agreed to help John, and then the punch line came…. “Ohh and Dan, we need to do this in 12 weeks…!!!”. As mad as it might have seemed Dan still agreed. So we hatched a supercharged marketing and PR exercise and went about finding venues and acts.
With Thanks to - Radio Jackie, The Kingston Magazine, Time and Leisure, The Guardian, Surrey Comet, Berrylands Companion, The Village Voice, Time Out Magazine, The Parents Magazine, BBC Radio Surrey, The Rose Theatre, Surrey Life, SW Londoner, The Rotary Club, jumblebee.co.uk, www.thisislocallondon.co.uk, www.thisisourtownkingston.co.uk, www.kingstonpeople.co.uk, and some business networking meetings, we managed to make a big noise in a short time!
We also published 30,000 gig guides, which was partly funded by John from Omni Local and advertising from some generous business which where – The Big Local App, Byrne Group, Big Yellow Storage, RJ Tree Services, Richmond Kitchens, Auntie Planty, The Client Factory, The Admin Angel, JFP Planning, MEW Electricals, RJM Glass, G.F. Fire Solutions, Remote Control, Seriously Sofas, Absolute Abode, Steins, Body By VI, DLB Reflexology, Alex Clark, PDC Design and Print (they also printed our posters and flyers at a reduced price), Backhaus Deli, SureCare, Ace & Bright Cleaners, Dream Doors & Langleys. Some of which will be included again.
We still consider it as a success, even though we only managed to raise £1,000. From a standing start, with no money and no history, we managed to arrange and produce over 20 acts, in 10 venues over 4 days! But like anything, you learn that things never go to plan. This year we know what’s ahead and have a solid base to build from.
On top of all this, we managed to attract some cracking acts, and some solid names – Jarred Christmas (has since been on Russell Howard’s Good News), Damian Clark (G’Damo supported Jack Dee recently), Shazia Mirza (The Financial Times Magazine, The Wright Stuff) to name a few!