Updated & Reposted from our previous blog hooptricks.org - originally published January 29, 2014 at 12:17pm
Photo credit: Alayna Roach with BC Photography
Performing can sometimes be much more rewarding than it looks. However, it can also be more difficult than it looks. There are some things to consider before taking on this new adventure. You might think that you haven’t been hooping for long enough for this. That may not be true. Some six month hoopers can be more performance-prepared than some three year hoopers. It is different with each person, how often they practice, ways in which they progress, and other factors. If you’re a shy or nervous person, you will want to be sure it is something you really want to achieve. Don't think that just because others perform that you must also perform. Go with what your heart desires.
Start by making sure you are okay with hooping in front of a camera. If you haven’t given yourself time to get comfortable with the camera, you will need to take some time to do so. Even if you're fine with hooping in front of crowds, cameras at your performances can be enough to throw you off. In order to book more performances, you will need to be able to upload good videos to showcase what you can do. Use your videos to advertise yourself as a performer. If videos make you nervous, you'll need to work on that. Check out this article for advice: 5-ways-to-get-over-camera-anxiety-and-flow-while-recording/
2. Crowd Testing
The next step is to start testing the waters by hooping in front of people as often as you can. Hoop in front of big crowds and do two or three volunteer/unpaid performances to see if you can handle the heat.
3. Look Around
If you find yourself hooping in front of others without letting your nerves affect your performance, the next step is starting to find places to perform. Start thinking about what locations in your area would benefit from your services. Start off with some free or low cost performances while you build experience and skills. Then, start charging more as you build up your flow, experience and skills.Photo credit: Melissa Rose (Mina Bear)
4. Getting Booked
Obtaining performances can be hard work. To find out how much to charge you should take your area’s economy into consideration. However, don’t offer a performance for less than what you deserve. Take your time and effort into consideration. Don’t be surprised if your area hasn’t heard of hooping or hoop dance before. Offer to give them a demonstration or send them a link to your YouTube channel or similar video players (if you have one). See this article on under-charging: thespinsterz.com/blog/undercharging-for-hooping-products-and-services/
5. Dealing with Rejection
Be prepared to move on if you don’t receive a call back. Don’t take it personally because not every area and not every location is looking for hoop entertainment. Many of them will not see the value in hiring hoopers or hoop dancers as their choice of entertainment. Don't focus on it as a negative or a rejection, think of it as a re-direction to something else. This isn't the end, it is just your first obstacle of many. You'll get better at overcoming them.
If you have done most or all of these things, you are ready to start performing! The best advice I can give is to keep moving forward and try your best. If performing is your dream, don't give up! If you put in enough time, thought, and dedication you will experience the rewards. If you find out performing isn't for you, that is completely okay as well. Read our article: Why being a flow professional may not be for youPhoto credit: Jennifer Dennehy