Dating is awkward. Blind dates even more so. So why would anyone subject themselves to the latest dating trend, which involves going on a first date in front of a live audience? Desperation, we suppose. As for the rest of us too chicken to put our first-date skills (or lack thereof) on display, we’ll admit it makes for great entertainment.
It’s called UpDating, and it plants two blindfolded New Yorkers onstage for their first date as a live crowd of up to 100 people eavesdrops. Though a couple of comedians launched the company in 2018, it’s experienced a new surge of interest thanks to post-pandemic horniness – err…loneliness…
The show currently has a waitlist of 600 singles, all of whom had to go through a grueling online casting process in which they had to tell a funny story about their last first date and provide their Instagram handles. Of course, only the most outgoing and interesting people are picked to appear onstage. (Which kind of makes you wonder why they’d need a dating service in the first place…)
Even if you don’t have the personality (or the balls) to do a first date in front of a packed room of people, you can still meet someone through the show. For only $15, you can purchase a ticket to be in the audience – where plenty of attendees have met other singles, no stage fright required.
“I met someone at our last show who brought a first date to watch a date,” co-creator Harrison Forman told the New York Post. “Hopefully the date worked out well. If not, you could look around the room and leave with someone else.”
It’s not a bad premise – and certainly sounds like more fun than Tinder. If nothing else, you can dish with that cute single gal about how much better you’d perform on a first date than whatever blindfolded lame-o is onstage.
“Are we the best matchmakers in the world? Not particularly,” Forman told the New York Post. “But I think we’re doing a better job of making sure someone leaves with a date.”
UpDating currently takes place on Thursdays through June at the Sour Mouse bar on the Lower East Side. Give it a shot and tell us if it worked for you!
Cover Photo: Updating