I was booked to host a gala show at the Lublin juggling festival, but at the last minute the people paying the bills wanted the show hosted in Polish, which I can’t do. So instead of just doing a single act in the gala show, I was asked if I wanted to do a street show too. Why not?
Well, two reasons why not. First, I’ve not done a street show for about 10 months. Second, I’ve not done a solo street show, without Pola, for many years. That left me without the unique Art of Juggling section of the show that made us stand out against generic street show acts. Third, I don’t know any Polish, and have never performed in Poland before.
Anyway, I gave it a go in Lublin, and had a lot of fun. I did two shows, and got good hats for both. I thought the hat money was rubbish, but after talking to other artists, it was apparently very good for street shows in Poland, even for street show festivals.
So here are two videos, made and uploaded by someone else at the festival.
The first is the finale of my show. It’s my take on the classic “do something dangerous, high up, using audience volunteers” routine. There are some old lines in there, but plenty of material I’ve developed myself over the years. The hat line at the end I came up with on the spot, about the exchange rate, and how I found it out from a taxi driver. It’s probably been said many times over the years too, but it was original in my head.
This video is part of the start of my show. I normally perform the diabolo to music, but had none this time out.
Many street entertainers don’t like showing their material to other performers, in case their best lines and jokes are stolen. At the same time, they steal other lines from other people. Personally, I don’t mind if people copy my jokes and line. My show isn’t about jokes, it’s about my stage character and charisma. I could do this same show and not repeat a single joke, and still be entertaining. Once you have that, it doesn’t matter where you perform, if you have music or not, if anyone understands English or not. Forget about lines or stealing, and be engaging.