Karen Koren - Gilding the Balloon

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SO, we’ve come full circle and here I am organising the visiting company Fringe box office receipts again.

Looking back at last year’s column, I realise I didn’t finish the 2010 returns until October 4, so I have a couple of weeks to finalise them yet.

It is a tense time as we wait to see whether we have managed to get through the Festival in good shape or not.

Though as my general manager, Sharon, has now been with me for the last four years, we get seem to get into better and better shape every year. So it is looking good so far.

I like to go through the accounts myself to get a clear idea how we have done. Then I pass them on to Sharon and then Alex, our accounts manager, to check and double check. It is a satisfying process.

Sharon enjoys the numbers game – making up graphs and seeing how many people came through the doors in comparison with last year.

Sharon is also planning her trip to the Adelaide Fringe and deciding which performers will be promoted there by the Gilded Balloon this time around.

We did three shows last year and they did very well, thanks to Sharon’s relentless promotion. She went out daily leafleting to make sure everyone knew the shows were on.

This year we propose to do six shows. The Wish List at the moment contains the wonderful duo Morgan and West (who won a trip to Las Vegas on Penn & Teller: Fool Us), The Scottish Falsetto Sock Puppets, Patrick Monahan (winner of Show Me the Funny), Abandoman (Irish comedy hip hop rap performer) and others that are yet to be confirmed.

While Sharon is in Adelaide, I will be starting to plan how to make the Gilded Balloon’s next Festival Fringe programme even better than this year.

What did I say about coming full circle?