I remember it being a Sunday, sitting on the train en route to a fundraiser I’d agreed to host as a last minute favour to a friend.
It wasn’t like anything I’d ever done before. The two nights previously I’d been performing to over a hundred drunk rugby club players at an AGM on the Friday and a gig on the Saturday that included three stag dos and one hen party.
It’s fair to say, my comedic mindset wasn’t exactly in the right place for hosting a Girls Gala tea-party at 1pm on a Sunday afternoon.
I’d been in touch with the organiser, Gemma, who’d given me a brief run down of what was expected of me. Seemed fairly straight forward. Four hour event, bit of music, bit of chat, some games, an auction and a raffle. Job done.
It was at this point, as I sat on the train enduring my usual nervous anticipation of walking into the unknown, I thought “hold on, I better clue myself up on what the event is about so I can at least pretend I know what I’m doing”.
And that was my introduction to Huntington’s disease and the amazing work SHA does to support those affected by it.
I read about a dozen articles over the course of my forty five minute train journey and simply could not believe I’d never heard of it before.
I realised the importance of what I was about to do. This was no longer just a favour for a friend or a chance to push myself out of my comfort zone by hosting a different type of gig to that of which I’d become accustomed to.
This was a fundraiser hoping to raise as much money as possible for a cause that means so much to so many.
I decided there and then that I wasn’t going to let anyone down and I was going to be the best I could be. If it wasn’t good enough, at least I could say I tried.
Now I wouldn’t say the gig went swimmingly. There were hurdles to overcome. I mean, I’d never performed to a crowd made up of entirely women, on a Sunday, at 1pm, some of the women weren’t even women yet, there were teenage girls and toddlers. At one point I even turned to my left to see a lady (with baby) who, shall we say, was feeding her child as nature intended. At that very moment I turned to my right to see another lady who, at first glance I thought was undergoing some sort of transformation into the incredible hulk but was actually just getting a face mask treatment.
It was bizarre (to me at least) but it was fun and we raised a lot of cash.
As I wrapped up and was getting set to leave, Gemma, the organiser, handed me a box of Cadburys heroes because I’d “saved the day” (her words, not mine).
It filled me with pride and was easily one of the most rewarding moments I’d experienced in my three years of comedy.
Since that day I have hosted events for SHA and in just over a year I’ve successfully raised (with the support of the SHA team) approximately £1100!
SHA, through happenstance or simply fate, now holds a place very dear to my heart. I see it as my duty to do all I can to help and support such a worthwhile cause.
I will, however, admit I completely bottled a parachute jump. I’m sorry but standing in front of a crowd trying to make people laugh, fine. Jumping out of a plane…….not so much.
So here I am again. On Saturday July 1st 2017, undertaking my biggest challenge yet. To fill a room with over 100 people at Victoria’s Live Lounge on Sauchiehall Street.
I have decided to donate 50% of my ticket sales to SHA. There will also be a raffle on the night and ALL proceeds from the raffle will be going to SHA. Tickets are £10 each and can be purchased via www.seetickets.com.
For large groups, tables of 10 or 20 can be reserved by purchasing tickets then contacting myself on my Facebook page “Pablo Serski Comedy“. Plus if you give me a cheeky like you have a chance to win 4 tickets (don’t worry though – still plenty of chances to donate)!
If, like me, you want to do your bit to help those suffering from Huntington’s then come along, enjoy the night, laugh, dance (DJ until midnight afterwards) all for a fantastic cause and hopefully we can, together, make a difference.
Hope to see you there.