Busking Rules

Do not announce your intention to busk. Catch your audience by surprise this keeps them on their toes. It also gives you an honest opportunity to win them over. 2. Be persistent in your attempts to build a crowd. Quitters never win. 3. Respect the wishes of those who steadfastly refuse interaction (nobody wins if you get punched in the mask). If you are musical, your primary attempts at building a crowd will revolve around song. Once you are singing, for example, you can determine if this is...

Neutral Walk

Bag mask exercises are framed by a neutral walk entrance and exit. In the neutral walk, you move from point A to point B with just the amount of energy required to traverse the studio. This does not imply low-energy slouching or shuffling. Your neutral walk should have physical integrity without excess tension. A well-executed neutral walk allows you to enter the performance space without commenting on your work. The audience perceives you walking into the space, going about your business,...

Sharing The Stage Duos

There is great value in partnering with other clowns. Up until now your solo acts permitted you to dominate the stage. In duo clowning, the stage must be shared. Your attention must constantly shift between activity, partner, and audience. To begin, engage in an activity, then share key moments with the audience. In this way, try to win your watchers over make them your confidants. This will bolster your duo act (especially if you are in conflict with your partner). There are many ways to...

Essence

A primary objective of clowning is to find your singular clown essence. Discovering the precise nature of this essence deepens your ability to open your heart and act with passion. Injecting your essence into conventional theatrical roles for serious as well as comic plays widens your range of active and reactive choices. Your clown essence is intrinsically linked to your inner child. In preparation for clowning, take a moment to consider your earliest states of being. What were you like as a...

The Greeks

When you produce the greatest effect upon the audience are you in your right mind Are you not carried outside of yourself Ancient Greek theater enjoyed a golden age of playwrighting and production between 530 and 400 B.C. During this period, the seminal playwrights of the age Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides addressed the fundamental nature of mankind and its relationship to the gods, society, laws, traditions, and fellow humans. Their plays contained the seeds of modern Western theater....

Core Exercises Two Character Bagging Vocal Shifts

You are now ready for an additional challenge creating and performing decisive shifts in two-character bag masks. These scenes are more than twice as difficult as single-character bags. Both characters must be differentiated in body, voice, thought, tempo, and emotion. But attempting to shift all of these components at once is daunting. It is best to shift in layers incorporating one new element at a time. We begin with vocal shifts. Remember that shifting, and shifting well, strikes at the...

Core Exercises Dynamic Duos

Half-face Hu-Masks have a childlike love of games. They are naturally inclined to play with other masks. A few Hu-Masks, like shy children, prefer to play alone. But even the most reticent Hu-Masks can usually be induced to play. All you need is an appealing stream of interactive options. Once you begin partnering with other Hu-Masks, you must remain open to impulses and ideas. Develop ideas collaboratively neither you nor your partner should be sole director of the scene. Choose a mask you...

Info

Exercise 4.7 Five Quick Stances 147 Exercise 4.8 Walk This Way 148 Exercise 4.9 Fluid Statues and Gestures 149 Exercise 4.10 Finding Voice 151 Exercise 4.11 Wigs and Hats 151 Exercise 4.12 All Dressed Up 152 Exercise 4.14 Reviewing Hu-Masks 154 Exercise 4.15 In and Out of Half-Face Masks 155 Core Exercises Dynamic Duos 156 Exercise 4.16 Sharing Activities 156 Exercise 4.18 Talk, Talk, Talk 158 Advanced Exercises The Great Outdoors 160 Exercise 4.20 Goodbye Studio 160 Creating an Original...

Essence In One Word

At this stage of the process, your individual clown essence is emerging. In order to isolate and clarify your essence, the audience must take an active role in post-exercise discussions. Each watcher chooses one word that accurately defines that clown's essence. Crystallized feedback prevents discussions from degenerating into detrimental overanalysis. The word must encapsulate some aspect of the clown's persona. Nothing more or less. As you will find, choosing only one word forces thoughtful...

Deepening Clown Essence

Music is liberating when the rhythm and melody matches your clown essence. There is no telling what type of music will best suit your act. Your clown's musical taste might be rooted in jazz, classical, rock, new age, country Western, bluegrass, gospel, blues, or folk. Do you have an image of your dance occurring in a certain setting What music might be playing there Listen to sounds that are beyond personal actor tastes. Borrow CDs from friends or the library. Listen to a wide array of...

The Nose Knows

Clowning exercises begin with the mask itself a traditional clown's red nose. Let's consider this nose for a moment. Is it a mask We don't tend to think of clowns as performers wearing masks. Although it is relatively small, the clown nose is a mask a partial-face mask. Don't be fooled by this terminology partial masks have just as much power as their larger cousins. Clown noses are as transformative as full-face masks, as shifty as bag masks, and as playful as half-face masks. A clown nose...