Having about 16 years experience (1995) in the area of miming and more years being expressive, I am often asked, “Robert, what makes for a good mime presentation?” I must admit, in my mime workshops and seminars I am a lot more detail in my response, but for the purpose of blogging I want to give you SE7EN (no pun intended) Quick Tips. These are a few of the things I find very valuable and if a mime would incorporate these few tips, they would elevate their presentation immediately.
When I speak of absorbing I am speaking of engaging the audience. Engaging an audience can come from a lot of ways, we would call this Contextualization. Carefully select songs, ask God for wisdom on what songs or outfits to choose, etc. Whenever I mime I am always seeking to engage my audience with my movements, expressions, and song choices.
When I am talking about being, I am speaking about your stage presence. Whenever you are before people dancing, miming, etc it is important that you utilize the entire stage. One of the ways you can engage your audience is to speak to them directly, and that can be accomplished by making eye contact with as many as possible. Also, it is important to be center stage but also venture to stage left, right, etc. By doing this, you are affording everyone an opportunity to see you at every angle and you command the attention of your audience.
It is important to choose your songs wisely. 1) You can choose a song that excites an audience just from the first words (familiarity) and lessens the work you need to get the story to climax. 2) A good mime song should be able to extract a story from it easily. 3) Song Length: Know your audience again. I have a song I minister to occasionally that is 8 1/2 minutes long. I have to know my audience to know whether they can handle a song of such length or if I need to shorten it (and I shorten it professionally). I also need to know if I am able to mime something that long. Another thing I try to do when I go places to mime, I try to expose them to other genres. If I go to a church that is predominantly Gospel in orientation, I will mime a gospel song and then bring in a contemporary one (and vice versa).
For the purpose of synchronization I decided to make declare the 4th tip, or Tell a story. It is highly important that a mime presentation takes an audience through a story of some sort. Many up and coming mimes think that miming is all about “pop locking” or creative dancing, however it is vastly more than that. A mime should be able to tell an effective story, which leads people on a journey and has a destination.
One of the reasons why I “HATE” mime mask (the mask that has one expression – only a few reasons why you would use it), is because a mime cannot adequately mime. One of the things that make my miming effective, is because I think BIG when it comes to expressions. I want my expressions and movements to DECLARE something to my audience. It is my desire to make my audience feel the expression and believe that I have become the character in the story.
For a number of reasons I don’t normally reveal my pre-mime procedures. However, what I will disclose to you is that I DRENCH myself with a song (literally will play it over and over and over and over until the song is in me). I go into a mime presentation with an idea and select movements to choose from, but I personally allow the moment, the dialogue (between audience and myself) and “Spirit of God” (don’t think I am trying to be super spiritual on that one, lol) to dictate how I flow during a mime presentation.
G) G Phi G (Glorify God)
Ultimately, in all that we do, say, or mime should be in efforts to give glory to God. I want each mime presentation to introduce people to my God, touch their hearts to get closer to Him, or recommend Him to their situation or problem.
If you would like a mime workshop, seminary, etc for you, your ministry, etc feel free to contact me by submitting a booking request (under contact) or email. Grace and Peace!!!!