Author Topic: On pitching a new character  (Read 1680 times)

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Offline dragonflai

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On pitching a new character
« on: April 21, 2010, 12:39:22 PM »
I have an idea for a character who I think would be fun and original, and I think I could play her to good effect and make many happy patrons.  How do I go about pitching the idea to faires?  I have a little brother with some video editing skills, and thought maybe I should have him make a demo reel.  Would anyone watch it, though?

Also, as a road rennie, I have a certain minimum amount that I need to make.  However, I really don't know what the going rate is for a street character (on the rare occassions they are paid at all).  If I am good enough to merit pay (perhaps in addition to free camping)...what should I ask for?

Thanks in advance for any help you can give!

-Felisa

Offline Fugli

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Re: On pitching a new character
« Reply #1 on: April 21, 2010, 03:10:03 PM »
I have a little brother with some video editing skills, and thought maybe I should have him make a demo reel.  Would anyone watch it, though?

Probably not unless you are an "act," and then there is often a set rate. Shining personalities are great, but the faires tend to pay more for scheduled stage performances. Give the people a reason to tip you, and grab the money from the patrons as you go.

Either way, it wouldn't hurt to make a demo - and you might have some fun doing it. You could upload it for us to see here.
« Last Edit: April 21, 2010, 03:11:32 PM by Fugli »
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Offline justsomeguytn

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Re: On pitching a new character
« Reply #2 on: April 22, 2010, 10:51:15 AM »
Where's Amelia Quackston when you need her?

Offline Amelia

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Re: On pitching a new character
« Reply #3 on: April 23, 2010, 11:17:26 AM »
Right here!!  Hehehe!!

Most of the lane acts have "Press Kits" that we put together.  Mine consists of my headshot, resume, press pictures of my character that can be used for Festival marketing purposes, letters of recommendation by other faires and festivals, copies of awards I've been given, a biography breakdown sheet of my character (a description they can use on websites and in programs) and my pitch, or proposal.  The last one mentioned, the proposal, is pretty much a business statement of what you will be doing for them in detail (I will be be in the lanes x amount of time, I will be at opening gate/closing gate, participate in parades, do promos or special events, etc.) in return for the compensation they will be giving you.  That includes base pay, hat pass opportunities (that MUST be stated in there if you expect to be tipped, otherwise it will not be included in your contract and can lead to headaches with management down the road), and any other compensation, such as housing or camping space.  Anything that you feel that the festival can provide for you, include in there.  They might not *do* it, but you don't know unless you request it. 

As far as base pay goes, I'm not gonna say what I make, sorry.  :) I talked to a few friends and ED's, privately, just to get a ballpark figure as to what I should ask for when I first started.  It will be small.  But I would try your pitch on the phone or in person with an ED, and if you feel secure enough with them, ask what they would recommend, ballpark, for a base pay for the character you are proposing. 

The last thing that I would recommend is, make sure this is something that you REALLY want to do.  This will become your business, and you will need to treat it as such, because that is how the owners and ED's will treat it.  While it is a blast, and the circuit is a great place to be, it is also a different mind set from those who simply enjoy it as a hobby.  Hope this helps!!

Offline dragonflai

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Re: On pitching a new character
« Reply #4 on: April 29, 2010, 09:09:05 PM »
Thanks! I assume you're 'the duck lady' who tipped me off about my current job with Staffs by Gust? I'm the same Felisa. I already have some idea of the trials of this lifestyle, this being my second year on the road. What are the pros and cons of performing as opposed to working a shop?

Ok you won't tell what you make. I respect that. Still, what to ask for is a tricky question...working for various employers, I have made $150-200/weekend, with potential for more now that I'm a manager. I supplement my income crocheting, sewing, and taking whatever weekwork I can get. I barely scrape by. So um...think I would make enough to live, even starting out? Assuming I'm good enough to make occasional tips?

Edit: removed a name I'm not sure the owner wants used online...^_^;
« Last Edit: April 29, 2010, 09:13:10 PM by dragonflai »

Offline dragonflai

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Re: On pitching a new character
« Reply #5 on: April 29, 2010, 09:15:59 PM »
Is that headshot in or out of costume/character? I think mundane shots usually shouldn't have hats...

Offline Amelia

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Re: On pitching a new character
« Reply #6 on: May 07, 2010, 01:16:47 PM »
Would you make more than that as a performer?  Not starting out, I guarantee you.  You are as a performer, after all, competing with people who will do this for free/small charge as opposed to the living wage you'd be asking for.  If you are looking to go from shop to street, you *will* be giving up money that way.  The pros?  Well, in my book, getting to interact with people, to "play" with people, that is a big one.  You make your own schedule, for the most part, and you aren't "tied" to a booth.  Although, working as I do at times selling, I find that I can have just as much fun with people behind a counter as I can in front of it.  But I'm not playing a character.  I'd sit down and make a list of all the pros and cons of your own, too, before venturing out. 

My headshots are both of the "mundane" variety and the costumed variety.  You have to show ED's and Faire owners your character too - that is who they are interested in hiring. 

 

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