I had my first performance with The Weirdy Beardies at the weekend at Winchester Hat Fair and I absolutey LOVED it. There is something about performing in this kind of context, having the audience right in your face that has really opened something new with me. I enjoyed playing to what they want, testing out what looked like they didnt want and having the satisifaction of winning them over. It is immense. Don't get me wrong there were plenty of times that we didnt win them over, but thats just funny and immense in a different way. The kind of nervousness I feel when doing this street theatre kind of performance is very different to the feeling I get in a theatre. It is odd because, in a way, you are more exposed as there is no on and off untill you get back to the holding room. It is exhausting. Burn baby burn.
The range of reactions from the audience is so diverse. Some absolutely love it and act like they are finally getting to express their inner performer that has been repressd for so many years and others want us to get as far away form them as possible. It is the 'Safety Factor' that you get from being in the theatre. The invisible but very present performer/audience line that some people never want to be crossed or merged. Most are pretty happy to watch but as soon as we get close they start to snarl. So it is interesting as most of the time you play to those that are watching and seem to be loving but sometimes, you get close and all of a sudden they look petrified or angry. As a performer we need to make sure that the audience know that we know we are the biggest idiots, not them. This rule led me to do some WEIRD stuff.... so funny.
This weekend in Winchester we were camping. Not so glamourous, I know, but a hell of a lot of fun. We ate our meals with other performers in a Big Top tent. I was having a ball plus it was my birthday on Saturday so nothing was going to bring me down. The only thing I hate is the packing up- so boring.
Anyway, I look forward to my next bearding session next weekend in Bracknell. Check out this promotion video for Parklife: