Having a clown community is important.
I have been clowning 30 years this year. That’s more than half of my life!
I have seen a lot of changes in the art of clowning:
When I started, most women dressed like men. Everyone did birthday parties. There were only three distinct types of clown: Whiteface, Auguste, and Tramp (with minor variations). Everyone wore a wig and a nose. Conventions always drew 500+ people. Competitions for make-up costume and skits were packed! There were multiple clown clubs in most major cities. National clown organizations topped 7000 members. Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus had a full-fledged Clown College and was performing to sellout crowds.
In the good old days, clowns were loved; not feared.
Needless to say…things have changed.
But this article is not meant to be a downer! We as a clown community need to celebrate our history! Grab what is good and move on smiling, laughing, and bringing cheer to a weary world. This is why we need community now more than ever.
Why is community in clowning so important?
We need a support system which thinks the way we do.
You can probably tell that we now live in a hyper-sensitive hyper-critical “my way or the highway” world. You can’t simply disagree with someone now, you also need to prove them wrong and destroy them.
As clowns — let’s just face it — we have a different way of thinking.
Even the most earnest beginner knows it! Our whole lives have been different, even if we are just putting on the red nose for the first time.
We were not always the class clown, but we thought about humor differently. We were tickled by funny ideas others may not have understood. We may have laughed too loud and at the wrong moments! (whoops) We spent hours researching or working on ways to perfect a trick or skill or routine. We dreamed about colors and fabrics and make-up designs. We loved other people’s kids, and ached when we (within the confines of society) couldn’t sweep them up and make them giggle and laugh.
We carried around a longing to celebrate our uniqueness.
Some of us found clowning as an outlet early, others later, but we always carried this burden. This need of joyful release to see the smile on someone else’s face before our own.
And THAT is why clowns need community!
So we need to stand toe to toe, shoulder to shoulder, and heart to heart with our fellow clowns and support each other in our different-ness!
Frankly, the world just doesn’t get it. Sure, they think they do — but they don’t…not really.
Where do we find such support?
Our goal in clown community is to share our strengths, learn from each other, support one another, encourage one another, and clown on.
Some of us will be able to do this in our local clown clubs. You might not like everyone in your club. Big deal — who does?! If you are looking for the perfect group, forget it! There is no such thing in ANY gathering of humans.
Soak in what is good, reflect upon what is not so good, and treasure the fact that you all walk the earth to make people smile. That is what matters.
What if you don’t have a clown alley?
If you don’t have a club in your area, then start one.
Yup, really. I mean it. You CAN do it!
Recently I met a man who was eager to get into clowning. I was running a workshop where he got to put make-up on for the first time. He was ecstatic! He dove into clowning headfirst, went back to his remote location and started his own clown group teaching people what he knew, and everyone learning together. He was a circus of one, creating his own clown community. A few months later and now they are all having a blast!
CLICK HERE to read my articles about running a club. With enough passion and coffee, you can get anything done!
Where else can you find clown community?
Perhaps you need to travel a bit and invest in recharging your batteries.
Come to Mooseburger Clown Camp and be a part of the greater clown community from clowns all over the country and beyond.
Go to a convention and soak in all the different types of people and clowns.
Get out there and meet some folks!
So many people say “Yes, someday I am going to…” Really? Someday?!? *shakes head* Sheesh.
Take the time NOW to look at your clowning. How much richer could it be if you had a community of clowns surrounding you?
These could be friends half way across the country that you met at a camp or convention or halfway across town. They are the ones you chat with online, whether it be a Facebook group or on Clown Forum.
But you know they are out there. You know they “get it”. We are a community. It feeds your comic soul to be with like-minded people.
No matter how long you’ve been clowning, you NEED one another. Finding a clown community is not just a nice thing to have; it is a necessity.
For new clowns it is supportive. It reaffirms there are more people like us and that we made the right decision to start clowning!
For veteran performers it is enriching to be with others who share our passion for laughter for a weary world.
Make a commitment to yourself to be an active part of a clown community. You will be richer for it.
Post a comment below.
Tell me how you have found your own clown community. Did you form your own club? What does it mean to you to have a support system?
Share your advice with my readers!
More links which speak to the heart of a clown:
- Ways to engage EVERYBODY in your clown club
- No clown can clown alone
- Is clowning a dying art?
- What if you get the “clown blues?”
- Secrets of a successful clown alley
- Why clowns matter — What is a clown’s purpose?
- Don’t quit your clown club just yet!
Mooseburger Clown Arts Education has been running one of the world’s most well-rounded clown schools since 1996. Performers from all over the globe travel to Minnesota each summer for a fun and intensive clown training program. Each aspect of our clown camp is designed to meet your needs and boost your confidence as an entertainer.
Whether you want to join the circus, visit nursing homes, run your own birthday party business, paint faces, or twist balloons, there is something just for you at Mooseburger Clown Arts Camp.
Or call me toll-free to discuss your education and see if Mooseburger is the right fit for you: 800-973-6277
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