Friday, February 16, 2007

Thoughts from the end of a week

The sun shines through the the thick palm trees, as a classic American muscle car rumbles by. I talked to my father yesterday for an hour. It was a good talk. We talked about Polly, Buster, business, life and leisure. It's been so nice lately, today it's supposed to hit 84 degrees!

Work has been good, the City Walk is picking up a bit. The other night there was a concert in the Gibson Amphitheater and that brought an extra 6000 people. Chad said his event will bring 3-4000 people for the WWE, today and tomorrow.

My shows have been good, as I continue to strive to improve the connection between me and my audience. I've been paying special attention to timing, humor, character and technique. I feel that there's been a lot of growth in the last six months as I've had to overcome the challenges of getting used to LA Audiences. It hasn't been easy. I've often maintained that you don't meet too many conceited street performers. The reason is. . . we're used to getting our teeth kicked in every night. On the street, if someone doesn't like your act, they leave. . . with their whole family, leaving a big gap in the circle. There is no audience but the one that I build. They're only as good as I am and, I am committed to sharing with them a few minutes of mystery, fun and a celebration of life. When it clicks, it's magic. I'm such a junkie for that look on someone's face when their mouth drops. Last night, a 9 year old kid shocked the audience by saying "What the fuck!"

It's such a great thing that we do. To go out night after night and make people happy with our magic. . . . what a gift. Making the world a better place, one smile at a time. That's my mission statement.

I had an interesting discussion with a dynamic performer named Flat Top. The few times I had walked by, while he was performing, I had to stop, I was drawn in by his energy. He was dancing and singing and doing mime and entertaining. I asked him later what he calls that sort of act. He said, "Interactive Entertainment". The couple of times we've chatted he had very trippy dippy advice, but I really dug what he was saying.

He talked about the flow of energy from the performer to the crowd and flows of energy from the crowd to the performer and around the circle. He plays loud bizarre music and really knows how to work a crowd.

Another time he told me that he wanted to be so good, that even ignorant people got it. That's heavy. He talked about the varying levels good you have to be. If the audience isn't very good, the performer has to be that much better. If the audience is great, there will also be an, on the fly, shift in performing energy.

This isn't something that is learned in a book. This is where the rubber meets the road no matter where you perform. It's what it's all about. Get my drift?

1 comment:

Tim said...

I liken what he said about... if the audinece is weak, the performer has to be that much better and vice versa, to something I heard years ago. In a marriage, many people claim it is a 50 - 50 deal. If that is so, the marriage is missing 100 percent. Marriage is a 100 - 100 deal. Both parties having 100 percent to give to the equation. If for instance, you are sick or not up to giving your 100 percent, say, only able to give 80 percent, your partner has to make up the missing 20 percent.
This equation is beautiful when applied to all areas of ones life. I can see it clearly in a performance situation as your friend implies. Great insight!