Time to signup to perform at the first-ever Museums Showoff, April 25th at the Camden Head (Camden High Street, London)
Museums Showoff is an open mic night featuring curators, conservators, librarians, collectors, Museum Studies students, archaeologists, social historians, educators, multimedia developers, explainers, visitors, theorists and everyone else associated with museums and library special collections. It brings together people from different areas of the museum world, and gets them to show off their skills, knowledge and passions.
How does it work?
We’ve created an online signup sheet here: http://www.doodle.com/vxgbazxy5edbg62w All you need to do is enter your name and a short description of what you’d like to do and BANG, you get 9 minutes on stage. There are 8 guaranteed slots, and three reserve slots in case one of the first 8 pulls out.
What happens on the night?
We start at 7.30, with an introduction from compere Steve Cross, and the night runs in two halves, each an hour long. The signed-up performers take to the stage to show off something about museums. You can do any sort of set. We think you might:
Show and tell:
A new acquisition
Your favourite or a ‘star’ object from your collection
An interesting find from the stores
Something you’ve conserved
Your current research
Run a group handling session
Tell us about something you’ve dug up
Describe the weirdest thing in your collection
Your idea for a next exhibition
The most recent object your collection should acquire or dispose of
Road test ideas for exhibitions/public programmes/galleries
Tell us what a museum should be collecting and how
Tell us about research into what museums are doing and why
Demonstrate new digital projects/ideas/concepts
Or generally show off :
Showing a film or oral history project you’ve just made
Trying out a new demo or interactive exhibit
Practicing a new museum-based comedy set
Reading your latest poem/performing an interpretive dance about your museum work
Performing an 9-minute play aimed at museum audiences
Play your new song about the Tudors
Re-enact an historical event
Tell us about the latest behind-the-scenes gossip at their organization…
Or anything else!
Every set lasts 9 minutes or less. There’s a 20 minute intermission and we finish by 10pm, to give us an hour of picking each other’s brains over beer and to form new plans and partnerships before closing time. The venue has a small stage, PA and lights, and seats about 80 people.
Is there money involved?
No-one gets paid. There is a collection bucket, and we suggest a donation of £5 from everyone who comes along (audience and performers alike). All the money in the bucket goes to a charity, which for our first gig will be Arts Emergency (http://www.arts-emergency.org/) who work to make the Arts and Humanities accessible to disadvantaged students.
Will it work?
Museums Showoff is organized by some of the people behind the surprisingly successful Science Showoff and the ubiquitous Bright Club. I know it sounds like a mad idea, but it’ll be fine.