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Audience Interaction & Crowd Work

17 Oct 2020

Audience Interaction & Crowd Work are Different!
Is the intention same? Partially. Is the output same? Nope.
Are they completely different things in comedy? Yes.

Audience Interaction is a technique / idea to get your audience involved in your performance whereas crowd work is a performing style of comedy which is a kind of mixture of Standup & Improv.

In Audience Interaction, it is all about a question to start with or a hook to get your audience interested in the topic of your performance. So “How many engineers in the house? give me a cheer!” would be counted as audience interaction. Where you are just taking the answer from audience in one go and then immediately move forward to your script.

In Crowd work, It is mostly about creating jokes out of the answers from the audience. So if you have asked, “What do you do for living?” to one of the audience members and then you take the details of his profession, it would be mandatory to attempt a joke on the details taken, as that is the whole point.

It is advisable to ask a question which has very specific answers, when you do audience interaction. “The Evening is going fantastic, Yes or No?” is better than “How’s the evening going on?” As the specific answers will be reducing the possibility of chaos.

Someone rightly said that the best joke always comes in mind when you get off stage! So, In crowd work, It is advisable to attempt jokes rather than waiting for the best one to come. Crowd work is all about asking questions, taking answers, try to find out a weird thing out of it and making joke about it. Risky, but sounds worthy with experience.

The one thing which is common in both of these is the involvement of audience and the connect that you get after doing it. Audience Interaction shall be the must part in standup comedy performances, however crowd work is a style of performance which should be experienced and practiced.

Weather it is this or that, your audience is connecting to what you are saying via it, and that what matters the most. Cheers!