Usher’s life is not all about seats and selling ice-cream

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Last week I had the privilege of being there on the night of The News Guide Awards.

I was in my Front of House role at the Kings Theatre in Southsea and always love working at this event.

This year it seemed particulary hard to call who the winners would be as there is so much talent in our local arts and entertainment scene.

I’ve often wondered what it would feel like to be up there on that famous stage in front of hundreds of folks, proudly accepting an award. It must be fantastic.

Working as an usher, I quite often get people coming up to me and saying that I must enjoy my work.

But it’s not all about showing patrons to their seats with a friendly smile and selling ice-creams.

First of all, we don’t watch all the shows/concerts at the theatre.

We may glimpse parts of them, but what we’re doing most of the time is watching for people taking sneaky photos and making sure that mobiles and other devices are switched off.

There’s nothing more annoying or distracting to another person than someone snapping away every few seconds when they’re trying to concentrate on what’s happening on stage.

If you can’t do without your phone for a few hours, then don’t come – or wait for the interval to talk, text or play Candy Crush!

Then there are the drunks. Yep, we do get them very occasionally.

What fun the inebriated are to deal with, especially when they’re trying to disrupt the acts on stage.

It’s our task to try to quieten them down, but it’s easier said than done sometimes.

Latecomers can be a problem too. There’ll always be someone who arrives when the show has begun and whose seat is right in the centre of a row!

Despite the occasional issue, I do love chatting to our patrons and wishing them an enjoyable visit.

Seeing friends come in that I may not have seen for some time is also a real bonus.

But the best thing is all the happy smiles and laughter as the audience leaves after seeing a good show. I wouldn’t change my job for the world.