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If you were a circus director spending lots of time and effort on a n00b, what would you appreciate?
October 18, 2009 6:59 AM   Subscribe

What can I get as a thank-you gift for my circus directors?

I'm a week and a bit away from my first ever festival performance, as part of a project by a women's circus I'm a part of here. The project involves about 5-6 of us producing and performing personal pieces with the assistance of two experienced circus/theatre directors. I got picked as a bit of a wildcard - I had the least experience out of everybody (less than a year and at very basic levels) but they liked my proposal and thought I had an interesting story. We've been working hard, twice a week at least since August, and for me I've learnt so much about performance skills, about developing personal strengths, about why I'm interested in the issues that informed this piece. It has been an amazing experience.

I would like to get my two directors something as a token of appreciation. I didn't know them before this project, though I do interact with one of them on another street theatre project we're doing. One (P) is the Artistic Director of this circus; the other (C) used to work with this circus but has now moved to another youth arts organisation but decided to come over and help us out. P's the one I primarily work with but I've received lot of help and feedback from C too.

P is a relative newcomer to our circus - she was hired as our Artistic Director in August and this is her first big project. She has about 6+ years of experience with community circuses and mainly does street theatre. She's got pink hair and goes everywhere with a small pink Mother Mary bag but I don't think she's particularly girly otherwise. She can be serious and stern sometimes but she's also quite loving and open and encouraging and friendly. We tend to bump into each other a lot and we have an injoke about "tying me up" - my piece involves escaping from rope, which she helps tie me up in, and we've been to a fetish party hosted by her housemates (also my friends) where I recently got my first flogging!

C is also quite outgoing though I think she tends to come up with crazier ideas more readily than P (P does too, but it seems like more of a shock coming from her than from C because P often seems more serious!) She doesn't tend to be as colourful as P in style and is often harried with multiple jobs and responsibilities. I don't know too much about her but I do know she can be quite silly!

Both have circus experience (I don't know C's speciality) and also are involved with queer art and culture in some way, though I can't say for certain what they define themselves sexuality-wise. C's told me that people tend to perceive her as a "lesbian artist" and P got her start in circus from an event at a lesbian event, but as a pansexual girl who sometimes goes to lesbian events I can't say that they're definitive answers, just that it shows something that they care about. From their conversations I gather they're in tune with alternative spirituality and healing, though neither of them are particularly "hippie" like.

I feel more attached to P because I feel like she's been a "mother" figure to me, helping me get out of my shell and create better performance. I would also like to thank C for her hard work with me. Asides from this project they don't work in the same office so I don't want to get them something they'll have to share. P came up to work for our circus partly because she lost all her stuff - including a lot of performance gear - so I'd like to get her something that she might have missed.

What can I get them? Should I go for form over function? Should I get them the same thing but in different colours or styles? I was going to give baked goods at first but I have no idea what their dietary habits are. I don't want something useless but I don't want something boring either! Something personable would be great, though I don't have tons of money and time.

If you were a circus director spending lots of time and effort on a n00b, what would you appreciate?
posted by divabat to Shopping (4 answers total)
 
A gift certificate for a nice spa massage to give those performing muscles a treat! It's something they would appreciate, but not necessarily spend their own money on.

And it may seem a bit old fashioned, but a handwritten letter or note telling them how much you appreciate what they have done for you is always, always appreciated.
posted by NoraCharles at 8:40 AM on October 18, 2009


Seconding the letter. Include that with whatever gift you decide on.

I'm always in favor of books as gifts. Find books that means a lot to you, and that you think would resonate with each of them. Books are very personal gifts, and can have a lasting impact that other books can't.
posted by ocherdraco at 9:58 AM on October 18, 2009


that other *gifts* can't, rather.
posted by ocherdraco at 9:58 AM on October 18, 2009


We just came back from our performance - OMG it was amazing. wow.

I wrote them a letter, which they loved, and I also brought cupcakes (P apparently has a weakness for cake, and it was her birthday a few days ago). Our crew's thinking of getting a joint present too but we've just returned so we're in recovery mode.

Thanks guys!
posted by divabat at 8:21 PM on November 2, 2009


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