Author Topic: Question from a beginner performer  (Read 1484 times)

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Offline Fireflicker

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Question from a beginner performer
« on: November 14, 2011, 03:42:32 PM »
Hey all!
So I'm a guest performer at my home faire and because it doesn't have many cast members management allowed me to act like one of the cast members in interacting with patrons and other performers without having to do any kind of official stuff (contracts, etc). I've been visiting other festivals over the summer and just run into this legal stuff so I'm not entirely sure how to handle it all. It's been straightened out just fine so far, but I'd really like to be able to deal with this more effectively in the future.

This upcoming weekend I'm going to the Texas Renaissance Festival to see the festival, get to know the people down there in case I ever get luck enough to go again, and work on my character. I'm trying to get enough experience built up to start auditioning at faires.

Do other festivals like TRF allow guest performers? What kind of paperwork is involved (I'm happy to sign any contract I know it's very much a legal thing)? What would be the best way to introduce myself and who should I contact?

The character is just a street character and I don't do anything very... intensive,  you might say. I just want to be able to play with the kids if they want to; I don't have an act or anything like that. I already understand the whole 'avoid other performers, avoid stages, don't take money, etc' and I let people know that I'm not hired on. I really just want a chance to practice and I enjoy making people happy. After spending time as the character I can't really just go in the costume and stand around as a person, if you know what I mean.

This is something that other performers have to handle and I'd like to know how to go about the whole thing as professionally as possible so I don't start out irritating entertainment directors and other actors.

Sorry for the really long post, and thanks for any advice you can give me!

McGuinness

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Re: Question from a beginner performer
« Reply #1 on: November 14, 2011, 05:58:07 PM »
Every faire is different on what they consider "cast" and "independent performers". I don't know about TRF's policy, but your best bet would be to contact the faire and ask them. Its better to get the official clearance than to step on anyone's toes or violate policies that you didn't know about.

Offline BubbleWright

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Re: Question from a beginner performer
« Reply #2 on: November 14, 2011, 06:34:49 PM »
Don't assume that if your email goes unanswered that it is tacit permission. When I was bringing the Renaissance Bubble Machine to Faires I would always email ahead of time, explaining what I did, and ask permission to attend. One Faire I went to did not reply and I took that as an afirmative answer. Outside the Gate before the cannon, the crowd found the machine very entertaining. Once the Gate opened, I found a spot inside, away from stages, performances, and vendors. Within 20 minutes a deputation from the Faire came up and showed me to the Gate. I mentioned that I had emailed for permission but was given an "oops, we meant to reply" answer. If you do not get a reply one way or the other, call and ask to speak to the talent co-ordinator. You may save yourself a bit of grief.
"It is only with the heart that one sees rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye."
   Antoine de St. Exupery

Offline Fireflicker

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Re: Question from a beginner performer
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2011, 09:09:26 AM »
Any tips on how to write to them? I'm trying to be professional but I don't have much experience with formal emails like this...

Offline BubbleWright

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Re: Question from a beginner performer
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2011, 10:16:03 AM »
Generally I would introduce myself (real name and Faire name), explain what I do, that I do not take tips or advertise my services, and realize that I should not interfere with stage performances. In my case, also mention that I would not make bubbles near vendors or food establishments. I would include some links to show what I do and then ask permission to bring the bubble machine. You might want to include someone as a reference. I would send the email to the info contact with the the header "Please Forward to Proper Person".
"It is only with the heart that one sees rightly. What is essential is invisible to the eye."
   Antoine de St. Exupery

 

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