So, I am performing at birthday party-something I've done many times before. Usually, however, there is a short 5-8 minute performance, and then hoop games with the kids for an hour or more. But at this particular birthday party, the just want a thirty minute show. I am concerned with how to fill this time without being repetitive. I am trying to think of smaller sideshowesque acts to perform ( I am going to ask if they'd be ok with me doing blockhead.....I'm not sure how kid friendly that one is, but that gives you an idea of what I mean). Or maybe an interesting or funny story to tell.....Any ideas would be helpful. 30 minutes is a long time to be on stage. I know that SaFire is great at this, and i'm going to rewatch some of her videos to see if i get any more ideas.
So far I will be doing:
How do you fill time in your performances?
With a longer show like this, if you have a mike, you could definitely do some patter (chatting to the audience, engaging them, telling them a little about yourself) and some audience participation if you think it would go over with the crowd. That generally takes awhile.
You also have the luxury of taking longer to set up your little hooping and fire sets. Being dramatic and showy while you get things ready- presenting your props, etc, etc .This will help you not rush, and not get tired out as well...
Variety is key in my personal opinion for a long show like that, and you have some variety in props (do you also spin minis? Twins? ), as well as variety in music. You could definitely have a variety of styles and tempos to switch things up for everyone, yourself included. Whatever you do- Don't use banging/hard music the whole time- it would be exhausting as well as repetitive.
Yeah, plus you'll want some interaction. 30 mins is a LONG time for kids to sit still. Maybe have a mom or some kid come up and try hooping with you (to show how hard the advanced stuff is) just before doing the LED routine.
Rather than struggle to fill time i would only book a show for the length of the material that i have.
Forcing a 30 min show if you only have for example 15 mins of solid material is just stetting your self up for a fall.
If you are set on doing it these are the things that i would start to work on.
For a 30 min show you need to start to think about talking to the audience and presenting a comprehensive show rather than just skills to music, You need to build a relation ship with your audience.
For kids you particularly need to get them involved and interacting with you.
Maybe some games or some thing. Also a strong interesting character is great for kids shows.
I'd say a one-woman show is going to be hard to sustain if you haven't done it before. Do you have friends with performance skills? You can do solos and partner pieces with them to add variety.
As everyone else is saying, you need to engage the audience with participation. Get them counting hoops as they are being thrown on you, or have a volunteer come up to try a trick or assist a bit.
I do a storytelling act where three people come on stage and each one tells me a word. I work it into a 60 second story made up on the spot. The volunteers sit down when they hear their word. The game is for all for them to be sitting at the end of 60 second (I have a big clock on stage with me). If I fail, I get a penalty and we go again. My penalty is that I have to hoop while telling the next story. If I win, I bring three new people on stage and I up the ante by hooping while telling the next story. Between explaining the game and interacting with volunteers, getting their words, giving myself a few beats to think of the story, etc - this bit can last for ten minutes.
Incorporating lots of gags is good for little kids - promising something, then pulling all the wrong things from your pockets until you find what you promised. Forget what you are doing and letting the kids remind you. Clownish stuff like that makes the kids feel smart and energizes them through a long show.
Great tips, thanks :)