top curtians

Click the article title link to jump to the article
"The Gentle Power of Kindness"        •     "Don’t Forget to Play"
"Comedy Magic and Clown Antics "       •       "Music is My Partner!"


“The Gentle Power of Kindness”
Aurora “Bebop” Krause

We should all be clowning for the shear joy of making others smile and feel special.  The fact that we can create something that others may find of value can make what we enjoy doing a profitable venture, lucky us!
However, we mustn’t forget that what really matters is that all our clowning events, volunteer or for pay, are opportunities to show kindness and compassion, even if your clowning events are not in a caring clown venue.  I consider clowning a curiosity that interests the heart so we must follow-through accordingly and interact with open hearts.   
What children shouldn’t see is Tom, Sue or Jane, what they must see is a playful clown character that is caring and childlike ready to play and focus attention on them because after all they’re the reason you’re there.  Regardless of the venue or whether you’re clowning alone or with others once you have opened up with a thoughtful approach and a grateful heart the path for a smooth and joyful event has begun.  It is our duty every time we’re in clown to represent the art in a positive and professional manner.  What better way to do this than by expressing positive and kind gestures to all we come in contact with while we’re in clown. Here are a couple of very simple gestures that may seem small to us but are always responded to with sweet acknowledgment.  It’s a way of   giving special attention back to the individual regardless of age.
When someone says to Bebop:
“Wow! You look great!”
Bebop’s response is: “You look mighty great yourself!”
When Bebop gives someone an “I Am Special” sticker
she says: “I’m placing this sticker on you so Everyone will know our secret; You are truly Special!” 
These are not major things but they are positive and it keeps the focus on them.
Remember I’m not suggesting that you do these for only those times when you’re doing your caring clown work but for every time you’re in clown.  When your clown character has focused attention and shown kindness towards someone you’ve created a special place for everyone around you. 

If you ever doubt the power we have as clowns to make a difference in someone’s day, I would suggest that you offer your clowning services to the children at a homeless shelter, an orphanage or a children’s shelter.  These children always enjoy any attention they get.  If you’re spending time playing games and having fun they don’t care if you’re in jeans and a T-shirt. However, if you show-up in clown they will absolutely know that you’re there just for them and you’ve come to make them happy.  These are valuable learning opportunities we must watch and listen; the children can truly teach us so much.  This is a perfect place to develop a kind and compassionate clown character.  It is when we take the steps to clown in these environments that we learn how our clowning interactions truly do make a difference.

I enjoy hearing from you…Let’s keep in Touch! Bebop…

jump to the top



“Don’t Forget to Play”
Aurora “Bebop” Krause

Have you ever heard a child say “Do you Wanna Play”? I love that invitation, my answer is always Yes!  Many times when someone sees a clown that’s exactly what comes to mind, some silly and fun stuff is about to happen, and as clowns we mustn’t let anyone down.
I know as clowns we feel like there’s always more we need to learn; a new magic trick, adding another ball or club to our juggling, taking our balloon twisting or face painting to the next level and on and on…If this is true about you then join the crowd.  Absolutely nothing wrong with us continuing to learn more skills and forms of presentation.
However, we mustn’t forget one very important thing, and that’s noticing the opportunities to just play when we’re clowning, that’s right ‘Play’.  I went to the old trusted dictionary and here’s what I found as a definition for the word play; amusement as the spontaneous activity of children, Hey, we can do that!  I know it’s important that we learn skills that entertain and we should have confidence and presentation skills for sure, but our clown character should always look for opportunities of spontaneous activity and ‘play’.        

In a formal setting individuals like to be entertained, they like to sit back and enjoy a structured performance. We, as clowns, can do that if the situation calls for it.  However, in an informal setting such as a family party, festival grounds, walk-arounds or even in a hospital room, a clown can be an invitation ‘to play’. Regardless of age or setting when individuals are in the presences of a clown they expect lively conversation and some silly, fun stuff to take place.  Use your sense of play to focus positive attention on the audience around you.  Everyone likes to be acknowledged by a friendly, approachable clown. Take time to interact and create a playful environment, give your actions your full attention. Notice what’s around to play with; a chatty shirt, a mirror, a musical card, a hat with a little bling or even just a little music.  It makes no difference what the fun object, silly conversation or comedy antics are. It’s our playful approach and our character’s expressions and reactions that communicate to those around us; “Do You Wanna Play”? I enjoy hearing from you…

jump to the top



"Comedy Magic and Clown Antics "
Aurora “Bebop” Krause

I love the word “Magic” because as a clown it helps me ‘look’ smart…It’s always clear to everyone that I’m a clown, not a magician.  However, I can tell you that I have learned just enough magic to impress and entertain my targeted audience…those under the age of seven.  Once I learn a magic trick I proceed to making it entertaining.  I can make my magic become totally amazing, extremely funny or darn right confusing.  But you see my character Bebop pulls this off just perfect because I make sure that my level of confidence is way-over-the-top regardless of how things turn out.  This is where I can make things entertaining by combining comedy magic skills with comedy clown antics. Finding one or two magic props that help you make clown magic entertaining is the key to developing the confidence you need to perform.  Find that magic trick that you can master then go from there to making it a fun and entertaining presentation.  I enjoy using different magic wands and large colorful silks.  I use silks coming out of; change bags, dove pans, my prop case and even out of my pockets.  Silks are light weight, pack flat and create a beautiful sight, they truly can ‘Pack Small & Play Big’.  Comedy Magic is a wonderful way to clown-up a presentation.  Audiences like to see a clown in trouble and magic easily provides that opportunity.

Once you find your magic prop, master the trick and the gimmick, then you’re ready to create a full-blown magic comedy act.  Knowing how the trick should work gives you the information you need to turn things around and make the whole act funny.  As you move forward with this routine it will slowly become your favorite and you’ll add and take away from the act until it fits perfect and your delivery is both entertaining and funny.  Remember to enhance your act with a well-developed character as part of your routine.  Work at building confidence every time you make your comedy magic presentation.  As clowns we don’t do magic to impress, we do magic to bring smiles and enjoyment to our audiences.  Hope to hear from you.

jump to the top



“Music is My Partner!”
Aurora “Bebop” Krause

I think many of us will agree that some clowning venues can be easier and more fun if we’re working with a partner.  With that thought in mind I like to think of ‘music’ in any venue as my partner. There are many factors to consider when we decide to add music to our clowning.  Whether its music we’ve selected or just music being played at an event, if music is around we should partner with it and create fun and entertainment for all.  Certainly when we’re creating our own performances’ for on-stage or private parties we must consider our selections in regards to royalty-free material, our sound system and our audience, I’ll touch on that later.

My thoughts for now are that music anytime, anywhere can provide a clown the ability ‘to clown’ and entertain.  It’s not to say that we should go without skill or talent but rather learn to entertain as a clown when music is playing.  We know that our clowning ability on its own must have entertainment value so whenever possible we should count on the music to enhance our clowning abilities.  Some of my favorite venues are doing walk-arounds at festivals or at corporate events.  I can always count on music being played and whether Bebop dances alone or with a willing member of the crowd, the entertainment flows.  Again, because I long ago decided to make music my partner I can count on my partner to never let me down.  At these types of events people are prepared to enjoy themselves with family and/or friends and many times Bebop and partner ‘the music’ become the facilitators. Also, at these events we may be clowning with music we haven’t chosen, but it’s okay just go with it.  I’ve learned some great dance steps from five year-olds, teenagers and from eighty year-olds.  The music allows for expressive energy along with physical and comedy movement and that can make it fun for everyone.     

Of course, when I’m creating musical skits and routines or preparing for private parties and stage performances, things are a little different. These presentations require that my partner ‘the music’ and I work closely at making appropriate selections which are specific for each event or presentation, that thought deserves an article all its own. However, I will share this information with you; currently my sound system is a Bose SoundDock Portable System. I create a custom playlist for each occasion and I use my iPod and remote control to structure the beginning, pacing and closing of my show.  I have created my music library that includes categories such as “BackgroundMusic”, “MusicalBits”, “ClownDances”, as well as “Music w/Potential”, which is music with potential for a Bebop routine at a later date. Consider working at creating your own library of music to clown with for various occasions.  Music can serve to enhance your presentations by creating a joyful environment and by simply involving your audience whether they’re five or eighty-five years old.  

The fact is that the heart of a clown should be open to spreading joy and music can help us do just that. You decide if music is something that will work for you and your character; it’s a great way to entertain and to allow others to join in fun. As for Bebop, she’ll clown with music any day, anytime, clowning is my world and ‘music’ is my partner. Hope to hear from you.

jump to the top