Opinion: The Pros and Cons Of Britain's Got Talent by Martin Cabble-Reid: Page 2 of 2

Kevin Cruise
I've just posted on my personal Facebook a status with some of Lorraine Bowen's festival appearances stating that she's an old pro, it's a character and that she's working it and taking her career in a more commercial direction. I hope this is the case as the downside for me was that the comedy/cabaret world of crazy, quirky acts was no longer interested in Kevin Cruise. However, Butlins, Pontin's and Panto was. Basically I swapped a late night audience for a family audience. For me this was bliss, but not necessarily for everyone.
One of my ambitions was to be able to sell my own theatre show (similar to Pam Ann). I've now made that happen a few times due to a family following I've created due to Panto. It worked for me but it depends on the act and which way they want their career to go. I guess in a way I did sell out but into and onto what I considered better and more challenging things. 
I remember when I was at Edinburgh and BGT had sent nine researchers up for two weeks. They were desperate to speak with Le Gateau Chocolat and have him appear on the show. I totally understand this and can see him out of costume sitting in the waiting area to be auditioned THEN walking out in full drag. For him then to start his audition and sing Opera is TV gold. I spoke with him about this and if he would go on the show. He has a big following on the cabaret circuit and is a credible performer. He thought he would be selling out and would lose credibility For him it made absolute sense not to take it further and I totally agree. 
I hope Lorraine is powered up to push this new wave of fans if that's what she is after. Maybe she feels she can push her act no further from where it currently sits and that BGT is a kick she now needs. I know a jobbing comedian who would do the holiday camps on good money on a weekly basis for many years. Unfortunately those camps now no longer book so many BGT acts as they feel the show has lost it's touch and doesn't pull a crowd like it did five years ago when I was on the show. Unfortunately because of the show that said comedian no longer works for them and if he hadn't been on BGT he probably would be, It's a double-edged sword. 
I feel so sorry for some of those amazing singers who audition and because of nerves cock up. That can really effect your current work and reputation. I realised right from the start that Kevin Cruise is 'so bad he's funny', so the more cock up's the better. If you are a comedian that wants to change direction then you have to make these shows work for you. You have to be aware it can go in the complete opposite direction.  The producers want to make the best TV and watercooler moments. You have to remember that from the outset as it could all go against your planned direction. 
Martin Cabble-Reid appears onstage as Kevin Cruise. For more info click here.




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