The Stroumboulopouli

The Stroumboulopouli

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Monday, May 28, 2007

THE LIST: My Top 5 Reasons to go and see The Hour live

1. The “In Case of Fire” Directions...

At the beginning of every show, Kevin comes over to the audience to give his “Here is what you do if the fire alarm goes off” speech. These instructions involve going right, left, straight and diagonal. You must move through hallways and doors of red, blue, green, and yellow. Take some twists and turns, up and down some stairs, and follow the glowing signs and huzzah! You are safely of the building. Every time I go I swear that I will pay close attention and actually figure it out, and every time I go I start to fade out after the first turn. Truthfully, I’m not convinced that Kevin’s directions are for real, and if they are, well, we’re all in a lot of trouble.

2. A Place where Everybody Knows your Name.

The first time I went George asked my name. The second time I went he knew my name. The third time I went not only did George remember me four months later, but some of the other staff also knew my name. Plus, George remembered who I had come to the show with before, asked about them, mentioned some things we had talked about in the past, and generally flustered me completely. I was amazed. George, and the rest of the staff at The Hour, really make you feel welcome, appreciated, and a little bit special.

3. He’s Even Funnier Off the Air…

George’s jokes and stories on TV are funny. George’s jokes, stories and his question and answer with the audience in between takes are better. He’s so incredibly laid back, so comfortable and willing to talk about anything that I’m often laughing so hard, I’m crying.

4. Hugs, Photos, Conversations and those Red Chairs

I love to watch the show – on TV or live – because I always learn something. I find a new book to read, a new movie to check out, a new political or religious organization to hate or to love. However, on TV you don’t get a hug from George at the end of the show. You don’t get to become a photo whore and take 50 pictures of and with George. On TV you can’t have 5, 10, 15, 20 minute conversations with George about anything and everything. Finally, and most important, on TV you can only admire those nice red chairs from afar, but when you are there and George is in a particularly good mood you can sit in them, you can sit in them with George and chat for a while (and they are quite comfy).

5. A true "Happy Hour"

For me, seeing the show live is worth missing an afternoon of work, worth the hour on the GO Train from Hamilton, and worth the scary freight elevator that takes you up to the studio. Seeing the show taped live, meeting George in person, having him remember you and take the time to talk with you - it’s worth whatever it took to get you there (skipping school, working overtime, using a vacation day, lying to your parents/partner/kids) It’s all worth it. If you haven’t gone, go. If you have gone, go again. It’s different and better each and every time.

10 comments:

Angie said...

Welcome Hedy!! You've summed it up perfectly! The first time I heard the "in case of fire" directions it was actually George who did them. He told us a story of being on air once (back before there was an audience)when there was a fire alarm. He then told us to follow him if he all of a sudden ran from the room. I love seeing the show live. The behind the scenes stuff is so much fun. Seeing people like Nile, Paul, Luce, Bob, Alex and Hilary is cool. George didn't remember me the first couple of times but I think he recognizes me now so it's all fine. I've been 4 times and it's a different experience every single time. For me it makes watching the show on tv all the better.

Welcome again Hedy!

Janna said...

I would say I am jealous of you guys but I had a pretty good experience out here when I met him.
HEDY!!! Welcome! to your first blog!

Barbara said...

Seeing as I will be taking my lunch at 4pm so I can go this Wednesday, and I will see you there Hedy, I have to agree it's worth it. Even if G does not have time to hug me because he is hugging all you great people. :-)
I'll take the pictures.

Erin said...

Completely agree, 100%! However, my 6th reason would be the audience coordination - Siobhan and the others rock! I have gotten tickets everytime I've tried (even last minute and standby), they are very accommodating and super friendly! Plus, if you join the group on facebook, they send you emails about off-time interviews.

I've tried to get into the Mercer report (sent multiple emails and joined the standby line on site) and I can't even get a response to say they have received my email!

However, on going again, I think I've reached my limit - 5 times this season (I keep introducing the show to new people so I can bring different folks to the show)...so I'm afraid to be labelled the "crazy stalker girl" if I go again.

Brooksie said...

I really like your post Hedy. :-)

I have been twice. Once at the beginning of the season and once just a couple of weeks ago. Very enjoyable both times. Though the first had no live interview. The second was a bit weird because of the guest. A lot of eye rolling on our part. George was honest about it though - spoke about how there is some stuff he can call the guest on and other stuff he chooses not to. All in the name of not alienating the guest and trying to get the most out of the interview. It was good to hear that.

I'd like to go again. I have a reason to be in Toronto for June 10th but I'd need a ride. I'll see if it is something I can manage.

Hedy said...

Thanks for all of the nice things you've said about my post! Much appreciated! (and Erin, I also worry about being the stalker girl and like you, bring new people each time i go to introduce to the show! On June 12 I am bringing my grandmother ;)

Anonymous said...

sounds awesome you guys. i watch occasionally. met george once. really nice.

Anonymous said...

I wondered about the segments that are taped as they are quite regular - I guess they are usually done at the CBC studios and do these segments ever require an audience at times other than the usual 4:30 ?

Amy

Angie said...

Amy they frequently have guests at other times. It depends on when they are available. For example today we went (1/2 the Stroumboulopoli and a couple guests) and we were scheduled for the regular 4pm time but we got word that there was an earlier taping. The guest scheduled for the normal time had to leave earlier so we went to a taping from 3pm -3:30pm (ish) and then the regular time. They mostly do the interviews in the studio but alot are pretaped. It's always interesting to go though even if everything is predone.

If you're interesting in going to a taping go to cbc.ca/thehour and click on get tickets.. they show the early tapings on there too. Hurry though. The last audience taping in June 13.

Becky said...

I've met him off air too. He got me with his wit and charm and all that crap.
I figure he's funnier off air because those jokes aren't written for him.