Denis Carnahan, star and creator of Rugby League the Musical, was playing in Toowoomba the night after the third State of Origin. Queensland had lost the match and the series. The state was in a state of mourning.
"And this has never happened to me before but a third of the people who had pre-purchased tickets didn't turn up," he says.
We all know Queenslanders aren't good losers.
"Maybe they were sulking but if you'd paid the bucks already wouldn't you just turn up and throw tomatoes or something?"
Carnahan has been playing to packed audiences, in different incarnations for years. In 2006 he was asked to write a song for the now defunct NRL Footy Show and over the years more of his songs were used, character Reg Reagan would sing a few, they'd be used as a tribute to retiring players, to take the mickey out of referees.
In 2014, he performed at the NRL referees presentation night, when he dressed up as retiring referee Shane Hayne and performed in character for the first time himself.
"There was such a good response from everyone, it was then that I thought I could turn the songs into a whole show," he says.
The show, which is not just for rugby league fans, he says, is "a game of two halves", two 40-minute sets, split by half-time rather than intermission.
"There's even complimentary half-time oranges at the bar," he says.
The songs and dialogue are backed by video clips of players and games.
One of the best things, he says, is that each new season gives him a whole new set of material.
"This year there's been so much new material around. State of Origin, regardless of winning or losing, the whole Kevvie and the coach whisperer, Freddie being a space cadet and walking barefoot and making seven changes, Gus obviously whispering in his ear, Kevvie Walters with the quivering bottom lip and the tears and the emotion.
"And then there's the regular season, there's always refereeing controversy over and over again, the bunker just keeps getting it wrong."
A lot of press about the game this past season was about the off-field behaviour of players.
"I won't address crimes. There's no humour in sexual assaults or assaults or posting videos of people without their approval. That's not for me.
"I do have a song called Off-field Misbehaviour, set to Robbie Williams' Let Me Entertain You which wasn't in the show last year. It had been previously but last year there wasn't too much stuff until the end of the season and then it went nuts."
Like the Bulldogs' Mad Monday shenanigans, where players were seen dancing naked on tables and touching each other's genitals. "I've set that to Neil Diamond singing reaching out, touching me, touching you."
Carnahan is actually a born and bred Canberran. He lives in Sydney now but attended Ainslie Primary School, Campbell High and Dickson College. He still has family here. He never played rugby league, but was "consistently dreadful" playing rugby union, soccer, cricket and hockey.
"I'm a Raiders fan through and through though," he says. "I bleed green. I'm disappointed they're away the week of the show playing in Penrith.
"I started out doing this for a bit of fun. I wanted to be a serious musician, but I'm enjoying this way too much."
Rugby League the Musical is playing at The Street Theatre on July 27.