Brad Weston’s Stagecraft: Clown

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This column explores different art-forms and the creatives who work in them. We look at how choreographers approach their work, what an improviser needs in his tool kit to do well, and how a painter sees the world. In each case I will apply the techniques of each specific art-form to juggling and demonstrate ways in which we can apply the creativity of other disciplines to our own.

This month I interviewed one of the world’s greatest clowns, Avner the Eccentric. I first met Avner Eisenberg in 1995 when I was studying theater at Dell Arte. He had a huge impact on me because he had challenged many of the things that made up the artistic rules I had acquired as a self-taught juggler and street performer.

The thing that makes his work such a standout is the way in which he connects to his audience, allowing them to not only be entertained but also to feel moved emotionally. In addition to performing, Avner is a master teacher, so he excels at articulating the artistic principles that make the up the framework of what he does.

In 2002, Avner was inducted into the International Clown Hall of Fame. He has performed at Lincoln Center and had two long runs on Broadway. He was also cast as The Jewel in the feature film The Jewel of the Nile.

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Brad Weston

Brad Weston is a professional variety entertainer, writer, and coach. He has appeared on many national television shows including The Tonight Show, Letterman, Ellen, and Ripley’s Believe It Or Not. He writes an industry related blog at www.bradweston.com/wordpress