Mark Wade Writes


You've seen it...I've seen it...almost everyone at one time or another has seen it. The act that comes on stage and looks like it's going in a thousand different ways, doing a thousand different types of performing, and doing none of them well! Some people like to call them variety shows...and that's all they having going for themselves, a variety! Now I am not against mixing a few allied arts together in a show. I think a magic trick in an all-vent show can be a very good thing. It gives your voice a rest and gives your audience something else to concentrate on instead of one puppet after another puppet. I also think juggling or doing a clown bit can also break up the show (or visa versa if you are a clown, magician, or juggler and you want to add a vent bit to your act). But please be judicious in how you mix things up!

Doing two or three minutes of something, dropping that and going directly into another two or three minute variety art..and continuing to do that for 40-60 minutes makes the audiences' collective heads hurt. No one thing is established with the audience before moving on to something else. It becomes a "look what else I can do" venture instead of a well-rehearsed show.

The same can also be said of the vent who uses puppet, after puppet, after puppet, maybe using five or six or more characters in a show. None are established with the audience, the character of the puppet isn't given a chance to develop, and your audience goes away confused and unsatisfied with the performance.

Become a meaningful specific, not a wandering generality (as Zig Ziglar would say..). Break up the show but do it in a way that is entertaining and enhancing, not distracting. Stick to doing your main art form, whatever that is, and add a little variety to spice things up, not confuse people. Your audience will love you for it!

Mark Wade www.kidshowvent.com

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous4/13/2010

    I learned in art class at Baylor in 1960 the basic principles of good design, simplicity, meaning, emphasis, rynthm and balance, which we called "smerb" for short to remember. It applies to visual arts, writing and everything. A good act like a painting should have repetition by motif, similar forms, colors, patter, bits repeated toward the focal point. Too much or different stuff going on is like the painting that runs things off into corners instead of toward that off-center focal or vanishing point. LeeDean