Some time ago, I did a performance in a park in Puigcerdà. It was a splendid day, and the performance went very well.
When the children were gone, the organizer approached and told me a detail she had liked very much: that after the show I would shake hands with the children to say goodbye to them.
I did not do it like this before. The show was over, applause, one or two bows, and that was it.
Until one day, I realized that it was not difficult for me to make a little extra effort and stay a bit longer to shake hands with the children.
I discovered that most of the time, the little ones wanted to tell me many things, and so I gave them the opportunity.
- that this had liked them, but that had not;
- that they already knew that trick;
- that where the puppet was (“Shhh, he is sleeping!”);
- that why I wear the shoes so big; and that
- they knew that I am not a real clown (because they saw me without a red nose after the show).
In fact, for young children, real clowns must wear a red nose all day long!
How to Say Goodbye to the Children
When the show is over, children often want to say hi, but they do not dare to approach.
How can we break the ice?
A good way may be to approach a child and shake hands as if he or she were the one who would have asked.
Seeing this, other kids will spontaneously want to shake hands with us, then more children, and we have it!
However, at this moment it is easy to lose control of the situation because everyone will want to get close at the same time! 😯
When this happens, I ask them to please line up so that I can shake hands with them one by one.
When it comes to large crowds, it may be hard to say goodbye to all the children, as there may be hundreds of them.
In these cases, once the performance is over, and the audience has begun to leave, sometimes I sit on the edge of the stage and wait for the children who want spontaneously to come and greet me.
So, I also give parents the opportunity to make a souvenir photo.
Using the farewell to get the children out in an orderly manner
In the case of school shows, you can use the farewell to help teachers to get out the students in an easy way.
At the end of the performance, I often tell the children that I would like to say goodbye to everyone, but first, each class will have to make its line.
Then I stand by the door and quickly shake hands with them as they come out.
As everyone wants to say goodbye personally, this usually helps to make the line and getting out faster.
Pay Attention to the Little Ones
We do not want to scare the children, so it is important to crouch and put ourselves at the level of their eyes. This behavior is especially necessary with the little ones.
You can take advantage of this moment to make each kid feel valued with a phrase such as:
- “Man, I already wanted to meet you!”
- “Hey, I saw you were laughing a lot!”
- If it is a boy or girl who came on the scene: “You did very well, congratulations!”
In short: saying goodbye to the kids after the show takes just a little extra effort, but leaves a beautiful memory in them for a long time. 🙂
My work is about running workshops and performing children’s shows that merge clowning with magic and puppetry. I enjoy my job!