As our society evolves I believe that our approach to entertainment needs to evolve with it. Most children love to come on stage and be the centre of attention and then somewhere along the line that fearless attitude is lost because many adults fear looking stupid. I think this is because for a long time volunteers were made fools of, particularly by magicians. I haven’t personally witnessed this for a long time but I believe it is still around. Sarcasm also falls into this category of tired old tactics. It comes quite naturally to my British roots but there is a bitterness to it that doesn’t serve a grander vision I have of the entire audience being brought together. It has a toxic undertone of ” I am smarter than you” which has never been a route to success.
Performers have a unique platform to have influence on strangers. I aspire to be cleverly encouraging so everyone feels good about not only the show but themselves. It is all too common that a performance is about the performer but I think the best shows are when it is about the group. ie Bill Cosby. When an audience feels safe and included there is an elevation of energy for everyone.
In 1999 the Purple Pirate was born. I thought this was a clever use of alliteration, androgenous colour with a character type that children liked. After 14 years of performing with this fantastic alter ego I realised there is a rich depth of mythology that can be used to promote positive values. The pirate character type was one of stealing, violence and social ineptitude. On the surface this might appeal to young people. In reality children and most people are afraid of loud noises and violence. What really captures their imagination is curiosity, inclusivity and self determination. Hunting for treasure, feeling part of a crew and making their own choices.
The Pirate character type gives a great opportunity for transformation and forgiveness. Everyone has made negative choices at some stage and deserves the space to learn and grow from those mistakes. In particular from the errors of our ancestors. I like the idea of consciously keeping the positive and leaving behind the negative from ourselves and our families/ancestors.
Everyone I know is making different choices than their predecessors. Choices that reflect a growth in consciousness about choices made with interactions with people of other cultures and also what will set their children up for a better life than they had. Environmentally, socially, and economically next generations have a much better view of each other and how their actions affect others.
Stereotypes of other cultures and peoples are breaking apart and this can be supported with our recreational activities. North Americans have lots to feel good about and our entertainment should reflect the reality of our world. Stories of transformation and redefining what we want as a human family. If we affirm what we know in our hearts is true; that there is more good in the world than bad then we will experience that (this took me a long time to truly understand this for myself). Laughing with each other rather than at each other.
The Purple Pirate has a unique platform to invite people to be a part of his crew and plant seeds of positivity….We have spots open on our crew….would you like to join?