2006_05_stompstage.jpgAt a performance at Stomp last night, a live, in-theater commercial was performed. The world's "first theatrical advertisement" is a promotion from Visit London, where different actors perform for three minutes to, as the website says, draw "on the specific cultural similarities between the visited city and London and will star a known local personality in a cameo role." You know, like Fifth Avenue and Oxford Street, the Guggenheim and Tate Modern - but who knew that Paraminder Nagra, of ER and Bend it Like Beckham and who was last night's cameo, was a NYC local? Visit London's Ken Kelling told ABC 7, "It's about general messages, about connections between cities and visiting them, if it were a soft drinks or a wash powder than it probably won't work in the same way." Hmm, but from reports, it doesn't seem like people paid the ad much attention - probaby because they'd only pay attention to some clanging on garbage cans. Stomp, whose creators are from London, didn't ask for money for the ad (they told the Times it was a PSA), and it seems like it was a pretty pricey proposition, given the cast of actors and traveling to a couple U.S. cities to try out (though the publicity is priceless).

Gothamist isn't sure whether or not there's a future for advertising during shows - though there might be for product placement in happy, upbeat shows. You can a performance of the ad here on the Visit London site. And when we want to visit London from NYC, we go to Londonist.

Photograph of Stomp stage from rachelleb