Monday, June 27, 2011
#1 A rundown on street theatre dynamics and online applications
Here are the basic elements of the most common template used in street theatre.
Create a stage in public
Create an audience in public.
Perform a show with a beginning, a middle and end.
Simplicity itself on the face of it however each of these elements are distinct skills that require experience and experimentation to master and any one weakness effects the whole disproportionately.
You create a stage in public by projecting your presence with intent and by defining an area as yours to control. Whether it's with physical props or borders of chalk or whether it's simply by engaging with anyone within your preset perimeters, you 'own' a certain area.
Your audience are created via the primate curiosity humans are built with wherein they become arrested by intent and action without easily perceived purpose. It's called the 'curious ape syndrome'.
People stop because there is something happening and they have to work out what it is so they can make a judgement concerning it that will define their next action.
It comes from when we had just got down from the trees and two thirds of things foreign to us would kill us and eat us if we were not paying attention. We have to pay attention to strange things until we make sense of them. It's a feature that has turned into a bug but it's useful and I've hung out in alleys 11 feet tall and crowds form as long as the question remains "what is he doing?"
I aim for the first thing I do producing an audience outburst of laughter and the definition of my stage, my creation of an audience and my beginning all gel at that point and we move onto the second stage of my seduction.
Beginning, middle and end and the collection of gratitude.
I have a big middle, I play with my situation and as long as I create some sustained pace of laughter production my audience are happy and lost in the moment, when I tire I increase the pace to raise the frequency of the laughter generated and when and if I can run the outbursts so that they are running into each other I sustain that until I judge it cannot be sustained any longer and break quickly into a movement dance piece that is a form of punctuation and then Bam, It's over and I bow and beckon the final movement, which is the audience to register their gratitude and come up and donate to my ongoing upkeep as that funny guy that brightens up your day.
For a decade now I've been looking at the internet like it was the largest pedestrian boulevard on the planet and wondering if these not inconsiderable skills that I've applied internationally could be utilized in a similar fashion.
My findings to date; People don't pass, you don't have any visibility until you market it, marketing is your costume and props. Marketing is how you define your stage and audience.
You have to have an online show, you have to have content and there is no beginning middle and end unless you look at each and every visitor as a separate performance which means your online presence, each individual installation of content you produce, has to have a beginning, a middle and an end and a means by which the participant is drawn to support you willingly.
I'll write more about this tomorrow. if the contents of my head are useful it would be ideal if you could donate a dollar once and a while and also link to me so that my audience increases.