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Desirable Hireable

Started by Thirsty, September 27, 2015, 07:06:06 PM

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I was wondering if people would be willing to share their tips on becoming desirable enough for someone to hire but still make a bare amount to live and be a part of the renaissance faire?

I was thinking of being a bard since I've noticed there are a lot of music acts. What instruments are more desirable for Rennie song troupes?

I also thought about wandering around with a giant spoon and just being a comical wandering renaissance chef in search for tasty (silly) ingredients.

Or, in your opinion, what are the more desirable roles that could ensure a spot at just about every renaissance faire in the nation?

I of course mean as an actress, not back-of-house. I am very humble, and any criticism I will take no offence. I seriously would like to be a Rennie.

Thank you very much for reading this.

Lady Leah
"You larp like a dairy farmer!"
"How appropriate, you type like a cow"

Merlin the Elder

As far as being a character in the faire, like your chef, you might be needing to know that most of the cast of faires are unpaid volunteers.  The acts, like the bards, make much of their living by tips and selling their CDs and such.

Living life in the slow lane
ROoL #116; the Jack of Daniels; AARP #7; SS# 000-00-0013
I've upped my standards. Now, up yours.
...and may all your babies be born naked...


Some of the best advice I can offer is to read this: It's written by a Tortuga, and he knows what he's talking about.

No one else can help you decide on your act, because ultimately you have to do something that you will not mind doing over and over and over and over (and over...) again, while at the same time constantly working to improve.
QuoteOr, in your opinion, what are the more desirable roles that could ensure a spot at just about every renaissance faire in the nation?
There is no such act. What works for one faire will not work for another, depending on location, audience demographics, and what the owners and entertainment directors want. What I would suggest is that you check out what acts exist on the circuit, and then find a niche that isn't being filled, or at least isn't being filled in the faires you're interested in. Fairies, for instance, are pretty much covered. Mermaids are very popular right now, but the initial expense of tails and tanks is HUGE. Jugglers, stilt-walkers, acrobats, magicians, etc all exist, but there may be room for more depending on the festival in question.

The street is a tricky, difficult place to make a living. I will be frank with you: you will never make as much as the stage acts. There is also a ceiling to the amount you can reasonably expect to make in tips (with some exceptions, especially for wildly popular fairies who are tireless marketing geniuses), and it is a lower ceiling than stage performers. Figuring out how to get tips without destroying your act is also tricky, though in my experience it is easier to get tips as a musician than it is as the sort of act your chef would be. The more instruments you play (well) the more marketable you'll be, but ultimately you want to make sure your act is engaging regardless of the instrument.

My biggest piece of advice is to figure out an act, and then to take that act to your local faire(s) to learn how to present it in a lower-stakes environment. If you can, camp during this time and make sure you know exactly what you're getting into wrt: the living situation on the circuit. Again, check out the link above. It has excellent information.