Do You Have an Ice Breaker?
by Pricilla Mooseburger
With kids being cautious of strangers and so many scary images of clowns in the media, we need to work a little harder to win over our audience. That can be done with an audience “Ice Breaker”.
What is the best Ice Breaker?
Puppets are a wonderful resource. The kids can focus on the puppet first. Then warm up to you after they have made friends with your pal.
Puppets are great ice breakers!
If you don’t have a puppet, a cute stuffed animal will do! You don’t have to be a ventriloquist! Have your pal be silent and shy just like the kids. Your pal can whisper into your ear and you can be the liaison.
Another way to warm up a small crowd is with name tags. Bring some colorful markers and some simple stick-on “Hello My Name Is…” badges to you next birthday party!
You can create fun names for the kids like “Awesome Aiden” or “Creative Cali”. Make a special one in advance for the birthday child. That way you will be able to mark them in advance and invite them up for a special trick in your show.
Another favorite is the Pricilla Mooseburger Original long glove. I loved the “Long Shirt” gag when I was on the circus. I actually learned it at Clown College. Since my beloved circus routines didn’t always translate to home town clowning, I created a portable one-person version: the “Long Glove”!
Load it on your arm under the sleeve of your costume before you go to the show. When you start your show, you can shake hands with a Mom or volunteer from the audience. Mom is great because you can prep her in advance! Thank her for inviting her to your show and have her hold onto the glove. You can then pull the long striped sleeve out of your costume! The kids will love Mom being in on the act and your crazy reactions as the sleeve keeps coming and coming!
I use two, a left handed one and a right handed one, to start off directing the Mooseburger Camp Kazoo Band at the All Star Clown Show. It always gets a big reaction from the kids!