I am participating in Jim´s Magnificent Monday this week with the theme ‘Street performers´. A wide topic that includes street art, street singers, musicians etc. If you participate in the event please leave your link in the ´link´ section at the bottom and I will pop in to have a look.Street performers are also called Buskers and can be found in subways, on street corners, touristy places and parks. Contrary to what people believe they are not all crazy hobos.
“Originally the dream was about traveling and developing a job that would permit me to travel. And I decided to go into street performing because it was a traveling job; it would let me go around the world.”
Many of them are talented but struggling artists who are trying to make a living. A street musician who is also called the ´Violin Monster´gives us some insight into the life of a street performer:
“When it came down to it, after taxes and everything, I was making right around $200 a week working at a shirt shop. And that was kind of rough,” Storey says. “So this music has just become more and more my passion, and I decided to just go for it and stop doing it halfway.”
I was amazed to see how many photos I have taken of street performers over the years. There is something magical about street performers and they have the ability to draw crowds. It is almost impossible for me to walk past a street performer and not stop and see what he is up to. Street performers are all unique and present something different to their audience. I tried to categorize the street performers that I have seen over the years and this is what I came up with. Singers who perform in the streets are very entertaining, especially when they sing Tango music. I saw this woman performing in Buenos Aires. I was so impressed that I stayed for 5 songs. She had a beautiful voice.
Musicians: It is common to see musicians performing here in Argentina, especially in the subway or close to tourist attractions. This musician drew a large crowd as he was performing in El Caminito in Buenos Aires. He was very talented and people tipped generously.
This group of street performers annoyed me a little. Their music was good but a young performer was walking around demanding tips. He got quite aggressive when people didn´t want to tip and were swearing them in Spanish. I quickly put him in his place – in Spanish!
I also want to add to this category the ´informal´ street performers. On a weekend they can be found in parks in and around Buenos Aires. A couple of friends get together with their guitars and drums to enjoy an afternoon in the sun. But quickly more musicians join and before you know it a new ´band´ formed. They love to entertain the crowds and the people love them!
Dancers: Buenos Aires is the Tango city. You will always find people performing the tango or other dances in and around the city. This is a great opportunity for younger dancers to practise and also for the older dancers to show off their skills. One of the many things I love about Buenos Aires!
Mimics are some of my favourite street performers. Some of them are really good and I am amazed to see for how long they can stand still in one place. I saw these mimics in Amsterdam. I think they were trying to be Roman soldiers.
Next time when a street performer stop you dead in your tracks, remember to give him a buck!