File puptcrit/puptcrit.0603, message 18

To: <>
Date: Wed, 1 Mar 2006 21:14:57 -0500
Subject: Re: [Puptcrit] Making a Living


I don't know if you want to hear from me...
but.......please remember it has been a long time since I have done these
To "develop this arm of the market" you have first have a really good 
Again I will say that word of mouth is your very best advertising.

The most important thing (I think) is to realize that you have an audience 
that wants to be entertained.

Your job is to figure out how to do that. When I was doing these kind of 
shows all that I provided were puppet shows - nothing else.

They were between 1/2 hr to 45 minutes (the same time frame as I use today) 
it always depends on the audience.

Recognize that your work isn't for everybody. For me the optimal age range 
was 5 - 6. Would go as low as 3 but no lower and today I don't think I would 
even go that low and maybe on the high range to 8 or 9. But like always it 
would depend. When I would talk to a client on the phone they were the most 
important person to me (and they were) a lot of times I wouldn't sell a show 
because it didn't seem appropriate for the discussed audience.

My shows were general entertainment (for everybody) when I would include the 
birthday person it was at the end of the show when the audience (led by a 
puppet) would sing Happy Birthday. Then there was this routine where the 
child would get a handmade teddy bear handpuppet that I designed and made 
and afterward had someone make for me cause I couldn't keep up with the 

The major trick (if you will) was to play to the entire audience children 
and adults. After all it is the adults who will hire you.

The format was somehing like this: warm -up, Intro, piece ( a 15 minute 
watching piece which was a pantomime - about growing) Outro - song, puppet 
After a while I got my phone rap so well developed that it became easy to 
sell and I could tell with in a few minutes if it would be one or not. But 
no matter I treated potential (or non potential) clients like they were the 
most important people in the world. (and they were - just like each audience 
was the most important audience).
One hint if someone calls you and says, "I'd like some information about 
your Puppet show, how much do you charge?" Unless you are very cheap you can 
figure it won't be a sale, they are shopping price.

Mark S. 

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