Monday, March 20, 2017

Audience sizes

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Over my time as a performer, I've played shows that were sold-out and shows where hardly anyone showed up.  It's never been for the same reason; it could be for many different factors.

And it's definitely more fun when there's more people, even if for some performers it can be more nerve-wracking.  But my question to you is do you do anything different, give anything different when there's a smaller crowd vs. a larger one?  Why?

I wouldn't think anyone would say that a small crowd means one could put out less ki or less effort, but have you ever caught yourself doing that, even subconsciously?  I mean, if it's easier to want to give more to a larger crowd, logically, it would make sense to go the opposite way with a smaller crowd.  Doesn't mean anyone automatically would do it on purpose though.

For me, when there's a smaller crowd, I try to give them an experience that really lasts.  At least, that's what's going on in my head.  For whatever reason, they came to see us perform, and since there's less of them than usual, I can focus what energy I might have put more "out there" on them.

If it helps, put yourself in their situation.  You've come to a show despite the weather, or that wasn't widely publicized, but you're really excited to be there.  If the performers put on a really good show despite the numbers, you'll be really appreciative, right?  Imagine if they went the other way, how bummed would that make you feel?

I can't say I've seen a taiko show where a small audience made for a lackluster show, but I do think it's easy for us - any of us - to hold back a bit in that situation.  Being aware of our own tendencies may not be the first step to growth, but without it, you can only get so far!

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