When it comes to trying to recreate a Character without losing the clientele that have been with you for a long time it is hard to know what can go and what should stay!
Costume I thought would be the easiest to change. But to what? Here it is week 1 and I have no idea if I will remain a Clown with a red nose? Makeup? How do I go from Halaloo in full makeup and wig, to Halaloo with makeup but no wig, to Halaloo with just a Red Nose? Or do I lose the nose all together?
I still don’t know! I am about to start the costuming process. I think I want a Zoot Suit! I think I know the Colour. But some how this suit appeals to me!
But I just don’t see it as Clown! Performer, yes! Clown no!
So I need to decide just where I am going with all this. As a Balloon Artist/Entertainer there is many ways to go. But if the Clown remains, there are looks that will not cut it.
But here is where things get tricky for me when I think of Clowns. “I believe you can Clown without the red nose! But without the red nose you are not a Clown!” Let me explain…
I did a poll that simply asked “what do you need to be a Clown?” Performers (Clowns, Jugglers, Balloon Entertainers) all said you need to be entertaining and funny! Character and Performance were the things mentioned most! I thought, okay the red nose is not needed, makeup not needed, costume does not matter!
But I asked non-clowns, the people we entertain, the people that pay the bills, what they thought! Wow I was surprised! Almost everyone out of the 100 asked said, to be a Clown you need “a red nose”
The two that said otherwise said big shoes! But, still it was about our appearance. I know we are told it is all about character, character, character! But to those we entertain they see the nose first and they think clown. But what makes us good Clowns is what we do once they identify us as a Clown and focus on us. How do we hold their attention? There is an expectation for us to entertain! Sure laughs are good! But I think entertaining is what really grabs them and pulls them in. How do you do that? Well I have my ways and maybe I will share them on this journey. Or maybe I’ll wait until I am out there teaching somewhere (I am always willing to do so…I will travel anywhere! Just ask!). And there are a couple of places I will be teaching later this year. One is a Christian Clown Workshop in Oneonta New York this Fall.
So here I am at a crossroads of sorts. Torn from wearing the red nose or not. So much of what I do is Balloons now, I really think I don’t need the red nose. YET there is branding to consider. Image is everything. That is why the top businesses tend to place a lot of $$$ into branding. There have been cases where BIG business changed a logo and then spent much money trying to get over the change when they changed back! Coca-Cola comes to mind.
For me Halaloo is the Brand and Halaloo the Clown was the name. But will the brand survive no makeup and no nose? I am worried! But excited for what is to come! Hope you will follow me on this ride!
****I always welcome your thoughts & advice. Please share any help is welcome.****