In my own mind, I am the most relaxed dancer. I've danced through power outages, being sick, audiences who would rather do ANYTHING than pay attention to the dancer, but there is one way to guarantee I am annoyed during a show. And that is a terrible emcee. Live or online, a good emcee controls the vibe of the show, making it comfortable for both performers and the audience.
I've been lucky to be in shows with the most glorious emcee in the galaxy (Joanna S if you are curious. Her pasta applause is legendary) and suffered through some pretty terrible ones, and I've decided on some rules for effective emceeing. I will probably have more thoughts in a year or as soon as I post this blog, but these are today's thoughts.
Some things to avoid:
Don't talk about the weather.
Don't mention how attractive you think the performer is
Don't make the show about yourself
Don't read the bio verbatim (especially the written version)
My troupe has this rule: No poop jokes. it's been more divisive then you'd anticipate
Some things to do:
My personal suggestion is just to do whatever Joanna does, which includes:
Make sure to learn how to pronounce all the performer's names
Be flexible if things in the show change. They will if you like it or not
Treat the producers, the performers, and the audience with the utmost care
Be the first one to applaud, clap, and scream for the performers. You let the audience know they are supposed to enjoy the show
Work to create ways for the audience to interact and feel like a community (even more important right now!). Invite them to enjoy the experience with you.
What do you think? What makes someone a great emcee?