May 4, 2020

Sigh… it’s day 4 of my comfy blue yoga pants (day -4 for actual yoga), day 34 of online preschool, day 44 of watching my true hair color come in and day 54 of this darn lockdown. The two year old has just doused the 4 year old with a cup of a mysterious clear liquid…hmmm… do I smell Chardonnay?? Ah…yes…he has now figured out how to scale the kitchen cabinets like Spiderman and push the dispense button on the big box wine on the counter. Is that what they are teaching in online preschool?  At least it wasn’t the Merlot. I’m more of a red person. Well, that and the staining factor.  Cheers!

Whether you’re stuck at home solo with your kids or hunkered down with a big bunch of family or one isolation buddy,  I think we have all reached the WTF point of these “unprecedented times” (which, by the way, if I hear that term once more I may have to resort to sucking the last drops of Chardonnay out of the 4 year old’s Olaf sweatshirt). How much longer will this go on and will we be able to handle the “new normal”. (Another phrase I could never hear again and be just fine.) What are we doing? Will we ever work again? Will we ever play again? And it’s not just the adults that are wondering. 

My daughter expressed her worry that we won’t get to camp out at the two big multi-day music festivals that have made up part of our summer routine since she was born and that she and her brother won’t get to run the bases on Kids Day at Nats Park. Have you tried explaining to a child that some musicians are doing “concerts” from their living rooms and that we may be forced to watch baseball on pay per view? GAH!  “That’s just NOT the same Mommy! “ And I agree. It ain’t.  No way no how.

But times are a changin’ and may stay changed for quite a while. And not just for those of us in the entertainment industry. 

Overnight all generations were roughly tossed into a tumultuous sea of learning how to Zoom, GoTo, Skype, or JoinMe if they wanted to meet with family, colleagues or clients.  Grandma has learned how to Facetime. Kindergarteners have figured out how to unmute themselves during video lessons. Suddenly Jetson phone technology is in the palms of our hands – literally and while we may be longing for the bygone days of face to face meet ups, it can be kinda convenient if you like working from home. Just don’t forget to put on pants if you need to get up and walk away from the video call. Seriously. 

So what IS going to happen to our summer concerts, carnivals, festivals, and large company events?

I am trying to stay positive. With Virginia and DC telling folks they can’t leave their homes until June, however, it’s not looking too promising for the local large events, school celebrations and conventions for which we usually provide entertainment that make up a substantial part of our income. So what do we do? What can we do? Can we create a virtual carnival? A video based company picnic?  Call in conventions? 

My gut answer is YES!  Of course we can! 

My company has the ideas, the talent, the acts, the artists, the musicians and the perfect performers for a multitude of different types of events.

Out of necessity many of these pros have learned to make their talents virtually available. For the past 6 weeks we have been reinventing ourselves and offering a range of performances, bringing entertainment to screen time for both adults and kids, events both corporate and casual.  We HAVE been making something happen and although it is certainly a far, far cry from the norm – we have been able to bring smiles to birthday parties, funny energy boost breaks to boring business meetings and happy hour entertainment to those locked in homes, hospitals and facilities.  So why couldn’t we bring our fun stuff to the masses? We got this, right?  Creative ideas?  Check!  Talent?  Check?  Time to figure it all out?  Check! The tech know how? This is where I need you!

As Rod Serling would say…imagine if you will,  a virtual carnival of sorts.

An amazing world in which the attendees log in via personal electronic device and are transported to a magical interactive Circus of Entertainment Options. A video platform of different rooms they can virtually visit – whether it is during an online only company picnic, socially distanced school post graduation party or during break out times during a large online convention. Enter with me and enjoy…

Room 1 – caricature artists – they draw your pic and email it to you!

Room 2 – fortune tellers giving individual private readings!

Room 3 – an interactive magic show for multiple guests at once!

Room 4 – join a live band for a dance party break!

Room 5 – be entertained by a circus science show for all ages!

Room 6 – trivia bingo anyone?

Room 7 – insert thematic entertainment idea here

Ok, so hopefully you get my idea. And hopefully someone out there has got my back. Do you or your company have the tech know how to make this virtual  Rooms O’ Fun happen? Do you have clients that you can see booking this for events? Anyone want to partner with us in going where no entertainment company has dared to go before?? (can you hear the inspirational music yet?) Let me know and let’s make this happen. I’ll even put on a new pair of yoga pants for you. I promise.

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