Passed my “First of May” Milestone

quick notes:

  • Vivi the girl needs to ALWAYS wear the girl type hair – this look is more Vivi the sophisticate fashion plate.
  • I shoulda worn the cuffs turned up. NOte: always try ON your socks too with the whole outfit. buy more overthe knee socks – lots more.
  • have more courage to be out there and clown. dont think so much. enjoy more.
  • clowns don’t do balloons. BUBBA says so. good. unless they clown with balloons
  • venue = volume. great costume for clown therapy, but a little “soft” in parade venue. could get similar outfit with diff jacket and higher “volume” for parades. and wear the cuffs UP!!!!
  • Lady needs clown collar for hot days. even today was too hot for her cape.
  • Not all clowns are friendly. Not all clowns want to clown in face when in the alley. Sadly, not all clowns want to clown in a parade.
  • Wish my flower hadn’t broke. Wish my makeup was better. Wish I had worn my overall cuffs up.
  • If I am representing a therapy clown in a parade, be the kinder gentler clown when in the up close moments, but OK to be broader clown in the street.  tell dog jokes. when up close in “parade petting” mode:  make jokes about the dog.  make jokes about the dog getting all the attention. etc etc etc
  • L00k needs to match CHARACTER needs to match MOVEMENT and VOICE.

VIVI ann & Toby

Vivi-Ann Entertainer Extraordinaire

ViviAnn is OFFthis was perhaps akin to a tryout in Boston.  what could be more apropos than Vivi-Ann, the MOD clown, at a 60s themed Employee Recognition event.

it was hard.  partly because constantly clowning a crowd for even a half hour is hard.  this stint was for about 2 hours, with a wee break here and there.  partly because I had to sew up some bloomers early that AM to be “decent” all of the time under the mini-dress.  partly because I was recovering from a back sprain and partly because I was fighting an earache and head cold.Vivi Plays Rock n Roll

Make a Note:  Always pack heavy duty antihistimines as part of a standard clown kit.

This gig was difficult mostly because I KNOW all these people and work with them every day, and would see them again the next day and the next.  I didn’t feel really “connected”., but I was in  a very real and official way – “out there”  just “doing it”. 

To Beat the Band!!!

All the feedback I have gotten and the hubby has gotten has been good. “Very entertaining” was a common theme in the remarks.  The best were the compliments from our campus director.  I had a chat with him (in character), about my experiences.   

However, it is another occasion for the Pisoni cycle of MMMM – and here are my R-reflections:

I need to get a nose tip for this outfit – in sparkles.  Even a small round nose is too “nosey” and knobby. 
I need to stuff the hat top and fix it to the hair  AND remember to ALWAYS pin the wig to my real hear at least twice.  
The wig is OK without the hat. 

I need to be aware of the props in my hands.  I am always making a picture.  Too much stuff shouldn’t be hanging out of purse, or I shouldn’t be holding onto many pieces unless there is a purpose. 

The 20% chance of rain joke with the little umbrella was great.  It truly was inspired by the actual weather forecast – that is why I wore the galoshes.  But the only clown umbrella I had was a teeny one, and I thought : “Gee its a 20% chance of rain one.”  How about that.  I actually wrote a funny joke.
I need more oomph and Out-there-ness!!! Maybe this would have come easier If I hadn’t been feelingn poorly overall.  I also need to work on my horribly neutral posture a lot of the time.

Make a Note:  Clown is All or nuthin’ much.


Making Lists

these are lists of things I have done/decided so far. Italicized items are not yet ordered.

Ambiance giveaways:
Paper purse goodie bag with:
   Mini Hand clapper
   Pastel M*ms and/or other candy (see list below)
Jelly braceet
Clown nose
Polka dot Hat
Foam Sunglasses


Ecofetti in signature colors

Lobby Decor:
Flower Garlands
Colored streamers
Tissue Balloons – foldouts, asst colors & sizes


Theater Piece:
Professionally made Angel wings – Wide & short white feathers with polkadot chiffon add-ins
Cheesy feather-boa halo on wire headband
Braids wig – with wiredup pony groups
Handheld confetti or streamer cannon

{Illustrated pix above are products of Oriental Trading company –}

I will buy candy from but need to wait to order it so it will be fresher. They have pastel colored candies like M&Ms which they tout to be from a better candy company.  At any rate, they are a much better value. For the price of M&Ms brand, I can get all the candy.  And I don’t have to buy it in those little packages either.
French Mints 5 lb Bag @ $4.65 per lb $23.25
Fruit Slices Jelly Candy 5 lb Bag @ $1.82 per lb $9.10
Fruit Slices Miniature Assorted 5 lb Box @ $4.72 per lb $23.60
Smooth & Melty Mini Pastel Mints by Guttitard 5 lb Bag @ $5.32
er lb $26.60
Colorwheel Gourmet Chocolate Candies “YELLOW PASTEL” 1 pound bag $7.25
Colorwheel Gourmet Chocolate Candies “WHITE” 1 pound bag $7.25
Colorwheel Gourmet Chocolate Candies “PINK BRIGHT” 1 pound bag $7.25
Colorwheel Gourmet Chocolate Candies “LIME GREEN” 1 pound bag $7.25
Laffy Taffy 8 Flavor Assorted 4 lb Bag @ 4.36 per lb $17.44

So I have to make my own baggies…. – they sell premade cotton candy
These would be nice if Icould find in resonable quantity:
Life Savers Candy singles – Pastels (but I don’t need 900…)
LIfe Savers Pastel Jelly Beans

Full Throttle Ahead

Angel wings and halos on eBay.  Order this week.
Add polkadot chiffon to make wings longer.  Pink wings & polka chiffon would mean white outfit and striped tites.  Funny panties.  Braids wig.

Order noses and makeup tomorrow.  from proknows distributors.

Okay.  Send msg to Missoula with plans.

Ask Diane.

Mornings drumming hopefully.
Afternoons – clown busking.   Clown teaching? – Woosh. 
Clown presentation. – decorate room in morning of presentation with card, hat, and gift pursies.  Create anticipation.  And EcoFetti –  Small Bag – 8 bucks per color; Med bag 11bucks – Signature colors: Shamrock, Vib. Yellow, Bright Pink. maybe need white also.

Createing ambiance:
With Lobby presentation – make as much a carnival as possible – cotton candy machine?  Definitely DONUTS.  Round eaties in colors – Jellies candy find this in bulk. Pastel Mints.   Pastel M&Ms  ( OTrad has foil wrapped bubble gum coins Item Number: IN-/K160 )Cake? Drinks?  Assistants in lite clown makeup. Item Number: IN-17/17 Flower Balloons – OTrd  MULTI COLOR TISSUE FLOWER GARLAND  Item Number: IN-3/132   4 bucks per 9 ft.  with reg streamers.

Giftie kits – nose, clown activities?, toys.  Item Number: IN-39/1568 Mini Hand Clappers – Oriental Trading FUNKY PRINT MINI HANDBAG GIFT BAGS Item Number: IN-26/1864 absolutely perfect – clown flower purses and 3 bucks per dozen POLKA DOT DERBY HATS Item Number: IN-25/561 Jellybeans in bags

Show – balloon release.  confetti – in circles and flowers preferably.  Ask at about a confetti drop. or at  preloaded handheld CO2 cannons or from  but this place looks most promising: 
so many choices – recored here and choose soon

cheap handhelds: 
Stumps has perfect RETRO confetti –  2.59/ 1 oz. pkg – see if has in bulk.  Also has pattern in gossamer (see if can ship direct to Missoula)  Also could consider cloud gossamer.  Could make ties to hould up balloon drop with gossamer.  Stumps aso has a balloon bag –

Work on script.  Find out chord – tune ukie.  Write Monday.

Send ukie to Wilm for knobbie.

Business cards
Brochure – can wait if need be
Show announcment – Vinvi Ann Full Throttle – with blank date for wreiting in if necessary.

Collect photos. – Ask Ken to do every week. 2hrs or so – make Powerpoint templante.


Back to Studio 5 and more Mask Work

Another session with Per Brahe.
Similar structure but some different masks.
More confident of process, however I did trip over two folks out of my range of vision – I checked only high range not down to my feet.

These are some rough notes I made after the end of movement session in cool down.

Full Body Warmup
all warmups are done to pretty passionate new age music
“Moving Mask” – Per’s original design from William Blake’s Puck (green)
“Moving Mask” – Per’s collection of what I might term larval masks
“Healing Mask” – Per’s own collection of wooden clown noses on strings
“Healing Mask” – Per’s collection of Angel Masks

In my session with the Puck mask, I felt like a temple acolyte and every movement had to be worshipful of the room, the others, and the light.

In my session with the larval mask, I was overcome with a “shit happens and then you die” feeling. It didn’t seem to make any sense to make the effort to stand up, so I lurched around on my knees. I felt free in speaking, but it was all of complaint. I wish I could remember the one phrase that kept coming back again and again. I was told at the end of the session I was wearing “the grotesque” mask.

My session with the clown nose, was of course a joy. However, I am not sure I was as open to the mask as I could have been.

The angel mask experience for me was quite low key this time but deep. I had gone as I was in a black state of creative despair, and was having a hard time finding a way out of it. I know the mask work “worked”, as although it wasn’t a joyous, or thrilling, or any type of emotional or spiritual rush, the angel mask opened up the locked place. I was open again and calm. And very appreciative. My angel mask had a heart shaped jewel set in forehead.
These are some other quick notes I made.

Per told the Kali – Dorgon story from Hindu mythology.
“Training of the American Actor”
Per comments:

“Narcissists can’t do mask work as they have to be willing to let go thir false images of the self, which they work overtime to maintain”

“The mask connects with the image memory in the muscles and releases it.
“The thought or image inside the mask goes into you, activates these memories, and then move, and balance the body”

He also related the story of the mask maker whose father had died, and when he went to see about starting the work on some new masks, this artisan could not work for 2 weeks. He also spoke of not even working on sketches or designs if he wasn’t in the right emotional state, lest his negative energy be transferred to the process and the mask.

Clown Therapy

beginning to build my references ….
this one is interesting even if it requires struggling with my limited Italian….

escamillo claun

….begins its introduction with ”

Sono un claun.. Si’, proprio un claun” – they are a clown, just a clown” .  How many times a day do I say this to my friends and family, or just think.  and it continues with its information on :

La clownterapia” 

***   ****


add more links here later

and now for some other interesting books

Goddesses: Ancient Wisdom for Times of Change

Published January 2005 by Hay House
Sue Jennings

book cover






and another by the same author:

Dramatherapy: Masks of the Soul

June 1994
Publisher: Kingsley, Jessica Publishers
ISBN: 1853021814 available through Barnes &

book cover2






and last but certainly not least….

Il corpo che ride –di Ginevra Sanguigno

Racconti dalle missioni di pace con i clowns, testimonianze, esercizi per diventare piu’ stupidi ( o stupiti?)
e l’introduzione di Patch Adams … or as my rough rough rough translation says…
“Tells of the peace mission of clowns, testimonials, and excercises to become a “little stupid”…

book cover 3


T2 Day -3 and counting

Tonight I sign a note for a huge loan.  I am going from being debt free to being in debt for the next 5 years easily.  400 clown shows to pay off I estimate.  Interesting comment in the article on using clowns in the ministry titled “Blessed Are The Silly“….

“Baker [Rev. Baker of Aldersgate United Methodist Church] praised the Merrimakers as wounded healers, borrowing a phrase from Catholic theologian Henri Nouwen. Wounded healers are people who’ve known grief, loneliness, sickness, tragedy or death — and what it means to be cared for by others.”

“When we honestly ask ourselves which person in our lives mean the most to us, we often find that it is those who, instead of giving advice, solutions, or cures, have chosen rather to share our pain and touch our wounds with a warm and tender hand. The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief and bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing and face with us the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.” – Out of Solitude by Henri Nouwen

Clown Couture

well there are some of those “gotta have it” items …. and these were one of them:

{insert pic of blue MaryJane clown shoes}

They were purchased from “mcprod” on eBay through their store, which has lots of reasonably priced clown shoes.   One thing about the clown shoes – one size usually fits all – ROFL.  These Mary Janes will Sooooo match my new “white clown” suit.  I am making a traditional Pierrot based clown suit, as most of the rest of my clown couture is character based.  It is not anything fancy, but a good durable cotton washable suit.  I am going to make a detachable white ruffle collar and pompom buttons though.  One of the lessons learned through dance costuming – make parts that are washable, and detache the glitz if possible.  This clown suit is soooo ViviANN – it will be a quartered one piece suit with the division exaggerated with a very high waist to make the legs look even longer.  I have a WAverly home dec fabric with a “shopper girl” theme with purses on it and great phrases.  The purses and tops have polka dot and flowery clownish patterns.  I want to put stripes in one quadrant in the legs (for lengthening effect) and dots in the opposite quadrant in the top, with a little white ruffle at the waist division.   It will have the traditional ruffle-edge gathered at ankles and wrists.   Now she will have the Mary Janes that will declare her such a girl clown even in the traditional white clown garb. 

In my research, it says that the white clown outfit is usually the one that is more color coordinated, and often based on the Pierrot suit and pointed hat.   The Auguste clown is traditionallly the loud, oversize, mismatched one.  The character clown can be anything, but often is a caricature of some real clothing type or occupation.  In thinking about my clown couture designs, I have very blurred edges on the stereotypes.  All of my first garments were caricatures of fashion – but they all share a common color palette.  As a matter of fact my entire clown wardrobe shares a color palette to keep accessorizing flexible.  Although this is a characteristic of the white clown, I am using it in a theatrical design sense to create “high fashion” in my character clown couture.   This suit I’m making is my first foray into the white clown archtype.  However, I do foresee a need for a white clown suit – every clown should have their white clown somewhere in the closet, just in case.  I already have my white clown face idea, muchisimas gracias a Mark Renfro.

I don’t have many Auguste-type outfits that are purposefully cartoony-clown traditional exaggerations.  The zoot-suit frock coat we bought for the DaddyCati is definitely an Auguste outfit, and on me the frock coat is so oversize it makes me look smaller and even more sticklike.  It could be a back up Auguste for me should the occasion warrant.  I am thinking more on the felt coat I am planning – to make sure it is definitely in the Auguste type.  It is a reversible two-color felt coat – charcoal gray and neon green.  I think I will look at “The Greatest Show on Earth” again and see how the clown costumes play with the standard lines of mens formal wear to create a definitely Auguste coat.  My intention was to wear it with my multicolored pedal pushers, which I still can do – either side out.  However with a bib front and big bowtie, it could be definitely Auguste.  This is why we have to find the itty bitty hat for the Daddy Cat’s zoot suit.  It is definitely  Auguste’s haberdashery.

 I am most comfortable in the character world – no surprise, having lived there for decades.  I think this is one way I can really help other clowns – to develop their unique looks in clown couture.   I have so many ideas for my clown couture future.  I am going to sell my own collars and bow ties as soon as I get my clown couture web site up and running.  I want to write intstructions on how to design your own clown costume.  How to modify standard commercial patterns.  [ As I know I really dread sewing standard stuff to order ]

 well gott go back to the ordianary world….  make a few phone calls.