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Old 10-14-02, 08:30 AM   #1
Spinners' Wacky World of Tops
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Cool pay me up front damn it????

Had a interesting talk with a non performer being a tourist at Santa Monica and he said there was a couple of Buskers(?)that DEMANDED money up front, one of which did some break dance move and landed in a pair of shoes put out in front of him.This guy spent 35min."not" doing the stunt.The kicker is he demanded and "got" 200 people to wait.My friend said he pissed off his girl friend so bad she wanted to leave,my friend wanted to punch his lights out but wanted to see the move.They waited, he did it and it was impressive but my friend said you would only get caught in his web once. Strange tactics wouldn't you say?
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Old 10-14-02, 12:57 PM   #2
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It's common and the best way to juice. If you have a trick that sounds great, people will pay before-hand. This is good because you can bottle for a long period of time without people walking. With this techniq you can also have a normal show business finish where you do the last trick, people clap and walk away smiling. Breakdancers are famous for this style of getting money. They prove that they can do amazing things with their bodies and people want to see an terrific stunt.
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Old 10-14-02, 06:46 PM   #3
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However, in some places you can get shut down for this; giving people the option to donate money after a show is fine, but requiring payment to see the show is selling something, and that requires a special permit.
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Old 10-15-02, 10:34 AM   #4
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Some buskers I know, do the same at spots they need to work like that. Sometimes people just don't want to pay afterwards and if getting their money before the show is the only way to get them, why not? It sure takes some skill and showmansship to convince people to pay beforehand...
In Barcelona I had the "pleasure" to experience the opposite: a good crowd that cheered and applauded, but rushed away as soon as they saw my hat after the show. I didn't force them to watch my show, but they did and appearently liked it. I didn't force them to pay, so they just didn't.
A crowd like that deserves a more aggressive approach, if you ask me. I can't do it myself like that, but respect those who can.
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Old 10-15-02, 12:56 PM   #5
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When I worked the Venice/Santa Monica area I would deliberately tell the crowd that the reason the other street performers demanded money up front was that they didn't trust them to pay. I never did, never have -- even in Barcelona -- and seem to get along okay, even with the non-payers. It's just part of playing the street.
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Old 10-18-02, 05:46 AM   #6
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I haven't done it either, is doesn't fit with my both my personal and stage characters. And I'm doing fine, too.
Barcelona was different, I was there during a festival with loads, and loads of other totally free performances. Arts des Carrers, it was advertised on this board, btw.
During that festival, all the performers had to choose their spot on the Ramblas and the festival seemed to have acredited whoever showed up at the meeting point. Along with the many, many performers that were already there, the tons of statues that crowd the streets of Barcelona and more than usual amount of beggers everywhere it certainly must have made the audiences kind of 'hat-tired'.
The only acts that seemed to work ok, were those that were able to put a hat down while they are working. But I don't want to work like that either. I want to do my show and let people decide to pay, but in the end, it was *me* who paid for that approach...
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Old 10-20-02, 01:42 AM   #7
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I don't see anything wrong or demeaning about having your hat down while you perform. There are those people who appreciate your show, but don't have the time to wait for your finale, and so they leave without "donating" because there is no hat. Would you be willing to try it for say, a week, to see if it makes a difference to the heaviness of your hat.
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Old 10-20-02, 05:26 AM   #8
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I would, if only I could... As my show is mainly about fire, it's a bit difficult - if not just plain dangerous - to have a hat around during the show. Sometimes it's hard enough as it is to keep people out of my circle, to prevent them from hurting themselves. The actual place doesn't really matter, I am afraid, people tend to walk towards their goal in a straight line.

And apart from that, during the performances I was talking about in Barcelona, I still did maintain a reasonable crowd. They just didn't like paying, or dropped the smallest coins in their wallets. But again, I think it had a lot to do with the huge amount of other buskers around and not in the last place, the more than huge amount of shows and festivities that were completely free. That combined with the local custom of putting your hat down upfront, gave me a little bit of a hard time.

[ 10-20-2002: Message edited by: Pyromancer ]</p>
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Old 10-20-02, 06:55 AM   #9
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hey there folks
anyone out there interested in sharing some information about which parts of this wacked up world also share a similiar philosophy about getting the dollars before doing the deed.
I have never encountered such a place on my travels yet but retrospectively I think that maybe I have been to a couple of places that it might have made a difference if I had tried it that way (brugges belgium - recommend it to your enemies).
Also suggestions about ways to tackle what I can only call an alien concept to me in regard to street performing. Is there any "generic" methods of stopping your show and getting money. It seems to me that once you got started on the collection your entire show what quickly become one big collection and you wouldnt actually do anything except collect money for your entire show which I must admit would probably be financially rewarding but my delicate flower of an artistic soul would wilt at not doing any actual variety entertaining and just hustling for an hour.
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Old 10-20-02, 08:17 AM   #10
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Actually seen it occationally. Know 2 limbo guys who do it in every show. Mind you they're shows were 10 mins and repeated constantly for hours. Found out later on doing a full show and the hat call at the end was "much" more profitable. Not sure if it would have helped in Bruges or not. They might have just seen it as the end of the show.

Almost considering something along the same lines small town Germany at the moment though. At least until I can translate my hatlines into Deutch. Nothing worse then having a huge crowd cheering, laughing and clapping for an hour then picking the small change out of your hat. Sorta like Bruges actually only they seem to be having fun.

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[ 10-20-2002: Message edited by: stickman ]</p>
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Old 10-20-02, 09:04 AM   #11
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[quote]Originally posted by stickman:
<strong>
Nothing worse then having a huge crowd cheering, laughing and clapping for an hour then picking the small change out of your hat.
</strong><hr></blockquote>

Now that's exactly what happened to me in Barcelona. Language must have been part of my problem as well...

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Old 10-20-02, 01:47 PM   #12
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You're not stopping the show to collect money. Collecting money is part of the show. The common thing is to get volunteers before juicing in order to hold the crowd. Then, walk to each person and slowly get money from as many members of the audience. You want to take your time here because if you're brushing by, no one will feel the need to give. After you do the initial bottling, you can go through again with some kind of trick or competition. This can get you the big bills. The only competition I've seen so far has been "representing"

Eg: "You are the last one to give money, where are you from?" over and over again.

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