Advocate Heckler, Anarchist Parasite and Mixed-Ability Shaman, Tony Allen at last launches the first volume of what he calls 'the fruits of at least 25 years full-time work, play and mischief'. An exploration of comic attitude in the art of stand-up comedy...
"...I was watching Tony Blair recently on the telly addressing a conference. He walked on beaming and waving and then, while the crowd were still applauding, he 'apparently' recognised someone in the audience, pointed at them and made like he knew them, and clearly hadn't seen them for some time. I first saw Clinton do it. I've got my own version of the same thing. It's a ploy.
"What comes across is 'Hey! Good to see you. Glad you could make it. How's the family? Nice one. Catch up with you later.' What is really going on is the performer is demolishing the fourth wall and bonding with the room - 'I don't know you, I've never met you before and let's keep it that way. But hey, I'm an opportunist and you are my way of establishing a connection with this audience'.
"Politicians are learning the skills of the live performer. No big surprise there, until I saw news footage from Serbia and Vuk Drascovic was using the same technique. What next? The Indonesian Generals? 'Hey! Good to see you. How's the family? Do you want to see them again?'"
"...I was out of control and raving at them. Then I started mixing apologies with the abuse. The sporadic nervous giggling stopped; they didn't even talk to each other. There was just this big silent room full of unexpressed mixed emotions - disappointment, sympathy, embarrassment, fear, edgy excitement and awkward expectation - an unearthed wave of it, experienced as a deep communal sigh."
"...In a liberal society to suggest there are still taboos is almost a taboo."
Aimed primarily at performers, tutors and interested parties, and the next new wave of live solo artistes - stand-up comedians, performance poets, spoken word exponents, lyrical street traders, celebrity politicians, ambitious demagogues and wannabe messiahs, Attitude - wanna make something of it? is essential reading for those determined to stand up and express themselves in front of a live audience.