When we walk out the door as a clown, a lot of things need to happen first, right?
Make-up and costume. Directions, time, and place are important, too. What you are expected to do when you get there will determine the props or toys you bring like: balloons, magic, face paints, puppets, etc.
Okay, what did you forget?
Did you remember to pack your … joy?
How about bringing along some silliness, as well?
Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the minutiae of getting ready to clown, we forget about the joy of clowning.
How do we do that?
Why did we get into this in the first place?
Sometimes it comes to us spontaneously, but other times we need to prepare for it. Let’s remember the Joy of Simplicity!
Clowning doesn’t need to be complicated
To capture the spirit of the clown we need to remember to be fools! We work so hard to get there we sometimes forget to be fools.
I have some ideas to help you stay simple and have fun. Dump the stress of being a “performer” and just BE a clown!
Things to think about before you step onto your “stage”:
- I will look to use a normal object in an abnormal way. A book as a hat, a shoe as a phone, a phone as a …
- Be surprised to see someone. Totally confuse them with someone famous. Introduce them to others.
- Find a new joke to tell. Does your event have a theme? Find a joke to go with the theme.
- Find a way to get your audience to participate in something you are doing: conga line, play catch with an invisible ball, the wave.
- Find a play on words with a silly prop. It doesn’t have to be expensive either. You will be amazed what you can find at the dollar store!
Here is an example:
My friend Mike has a stuffed toy piece of birthday cake. He takes it around telling everyone it is his imitation cake.
It does imitations.
Put it in a pan, it’s a pancake. Put it in a mug, it’s coffee cake. Hit it with your fist, it’s … you guessed it, pound cake!
Hilarious! Can you imagine the silly buildup of a performing piece of cake? I laugh just thinking about it. Thanks for the joy, Mike!!!
Record Your Good Ideas
Now keep track of how it worked. I know when you get home you just want to peel off your costume, ditch your wig, kick off your shoes and collapse on the couch! Ok, do that — and have a notebook waiting for you.
Because you think you will remember that stroke of brilliance, or that funny line you came up with.
But I assure you: it’s better to have a short pencil than a long memory!
Ask yourself these questions:
- What did I do new?
- How did it work? How could I improve it?
- Even if something failed, you can learn from it.
- What should I try next time?
Remember: some events and performance opportunities are an annual thing. Routines you do for a reading program or city celebration will only be used once a year. You won’t remember it unless you write it down!
I encourage you to embrace your inner goof ball when you go out to clown.
Have some fun, be a fool, share your joy!
Leave a comment below telling me how you keep it simple and what has worked for you.
I would love to hear some of your spontaneous bits and jokes!
Take a look at these joy filled inspirational clowning articles:
- Why Clowns Matter
- Laughter Knows No Age
- 10 Choices You’ll Regret
- Are You Funny Enough?
- Be Someone’s Clown
- What Makes People Laugh?
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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