Seinfeld ticket rush still on for Ipswich 'gig'
HELLO Charlie, can you tell me how I can get a ticket to the Jerry Seinfeld performance at Studio 188 in Ipswich, please?
Sixteen months after a QT April Fool's front page, Cr Charlie Pisasale is still taking calls where the person on the other end asks that question.
The last call he took was on Monday night.
On April 1 last year the gist of the QT story was that Seinfeld wanted to get back to his roots and perform in intimate venues as he did in New York comedy clubs as an up-and-comer.
Cr Pisasale's cousin, Lucio Pisasale, according to the story, lives in the Little Italy district of Manhattan in New York and had heard about Ipswich's Studio 188.
So Charlie, as the city's head of arts and culture, hot-footed it to the US and was able, in secret talks with Seinfeld's management team, to secure a gig at the intimate Ipswich performing arts space.
Adding to the interest in the story was Seinfeld's announcement of a real tour of Australia next month, which includes a gig in Brisbane.
"I keep on getting calls about it because people didn't quite get the April 1 bit," Cr Pisasale grinned.
"They ask if there any tickets still available for the gig at Studio 188.
"Since the QT headline I would have had 300-plus calls, but I tell them all the same thing.
"They see the funny side of it... but it is a slow reaction. When the real tour was announced for next month I think that prompted people to think 'hang on, he's coming to Studio 188 as well'."
In a bizarre twist to the story Cr Pisasale has revealed that his little brother Paul, then the Ipswich mayor, thought the idea of having Seinfeld come to the city should be explored further.
Never shy of securing a headline, the former mayor saw the possibilities light up in front of his eyes.
"Paul tried to get Seinfeld to come here," Charlie grinned.
"I am very confident he did get onto Jerry's management to get him here."
Charlie said he would not be following his brother's lead at this stage, not that there's anything wrong with that.
The QT had a raft of April 1 joke stories last year, including one about an alleged Merman, a half man/half fish creature that had been seen near in Brisbane River the Goodna boat ramp in the city's east.
Cr Pisasale told the QT he had not had any reported "Merman" sightings down his neck of the woods in the west.
"Mermen don't come down here. We've only got quality fish in the Bremer River down our way," he chuckled.
The most famous April Fool's hoax of all time is known as "The Swiss Spaghetti Harvest" saga.
It was broadcast by the highly regarded BBC program Panorama which showed footage of Swiss peasants hauling in a bumper crop of spaghetti from trees. The program explained the bounty of spaghetti was due to the successful eradication of the "spaghetti weevil".
The Brits, not knowing much about Italian cuisine back then, inundated the BBC with calls asking how they could grow spaghetti trees themselves.
Cr Pisasale, whose Italian name is Carmelo, was born in Sicily and knows a thing or two about spaghetti.
He had a cracker of a response when asked whether he was surprised how the Panorama show had fooled so many.
"It gets better than that," Charlie grinned.
"In my early days in Australia the food here was pretty basic and there wasn't the cuisine we enjoy now.
"This gentleman, a professional with a large business in town, asked me one afternoon 'so what tree does spaghetti grow on?'
"He wasn't smiling.
"So I had to straighten the poor bloke out. He needed to know."