How many times have we as performers walked into an undesirable situation (a pitfall) and then had to work our way through the mess? We took a bad circumstance and made it work. Let’s delve into this a bit and see if with planning, we can head this off..

Pitfalls can happen for any and all reasons. If the set up for the show is not right for us, or the client wants you to do something that would not make you look good, that’s when you should act.. A perfect example of this is doing a show for a fraternal organization or club only to find that in the performance hall they have a television turned on to a ballgame and an open bar. In the beginning of my career I just went with it. I did the show and had to work over the noise in the room. Now I avoid this pitfall by asking questions as I book the date. I tell the prospective client that if they have a bar and TV on in our performance area it must either be turned off or they need to find me another spot to work. By mentioning this in advance it can save a lot of grief later and an unnecessary confrontation. If the client refuses, turn the show down as you will not look good. Just avoid this pitfall.

Another pitfall is to have the catering company , who is working your banquet, not clear the dishes from dinner when you are performing. They may clear before or after, but not during your show. This is a distraction neither you nor I need. The same holds true for the catering company walking through your audience asking the audience if they would like coffee or another drink. Make this also a part of your discussion when booking this event.

If your show doesn’t go over because of distractions, the client will always say, “That act wasn’t funny!”.   They tend never to blame themselves, but instead turn it on you. Watch for all possible pitfalls and plan on how to avoid them. Your reputation is at stake!

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