Saturday, August 27, 2011

"Hey Out there. Support Each Other!"

Years and years and years ago I discovered a very strange thing about myself...I go to see other performers.

It started in college, or maybe high school....I would go see my friends in bands or in plays. I can only think of one instance where I saw a friend in a band, I'm not a real musical person.

So I figured this was natural, you just go see each other.

I was thinking of this because I am going to see a friend of mine tonight, the great Jay Alexander perform at a beautiful theatre in Marin County. I usually have time to help a bit backstage but I have my own show and I'll rush over to see him. I even bought a ticket.

But very few performers do this. I don't quite get it. Many years ago, in my troupe The Kloons, we put a lot of effort into mailing invitations to all the members of the local clown organizations. We must have sent out 150 invitations and I figured that would be a slam dunk for getting audiences, I mean we only needed maybe 20 people a show. We were 3 fully trained Ringling Brothers Clowns, performing together. We got 1 person. That baffled me, still does, if you are passionate enough to go to meetings about the art of clowning why wouldn't you see a show like this?

So over the years I've just seen this over and over. Mostly I just go because I'm asked. I just don't get the million excuses folks have for not supporting each other. To put yourself on stage takes tremendous courage and certainly foolhardiness. I don't have to judge it, I don't have to take notes, I just have to go and enjoy it. That's pretty rough, a whole lot to ask of someone, come enjoy a live show...

Go, support each other. If you can't afford it, ask for a half price ticket. Don't ask for free tickets, that's lame. There is always tremendous cost to performing, not physical or emotional but actual costs. You know stuff like the postcard you're staring at! A tank of gas costs $50 or more. I think you can chip in $15 to support the arts.

You have Tivo, go to a show!

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