[Dixielandjazz] Applause

Bill Gunter jazzboard at hotmail.com
Fri Nov 21 17:12:28 PST 2003

Tom Loeb writ:

"How bout when you blister the paint off the walls playing a great solo with 
no applause, and some other player during the same tune screws up his solo, 
gets lost, messes up the band, then he gets loads of applause? Any others 
out there?"

I feel it's the case that applause is due to two things: (1) perception and 
(2) everybody else.

In the case of "perception" . . . if the perceiver thinks the performer has 
done something extroardinary he will applaud vigorously.  For example: The 
juggler who makes the simplest of maneuvers "look" difficult with a lot of 
energy and looks of intense concentration will get more applause than the 
juggler who does the most difficult maneuver in the known repertoire but 
makes it look effortless and simple.

There's just no justice in the world, is there!

In the case of "everybody else" . . . if the perceiver notices everybody 
else in a crowded theater is going wild with enthusiasm it will reinforce 
his own idea that the presentation is a marvel to behold and he will ratchet 
up his own response accordingly.

Lesson:  If you want the audience to respond enthusiastically to your solo 
make it "Look" difficult (sweat a lot and don't forget to grimace along with 
some physical body language). If this sounds cynical remember that it came 
from a cynic.

It also helps if you have a really big crowd in the venue - the enthusiasm 
(or hatred) will "rub off" on everyone there.

Respectfully submitted,

Bill "Ugh, Ooof, urghhh" Gunter
jazzboard at hotmail.com

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