Are You Performing Old Material Because It’s Easier?

Today I performed for a daycare client that I’ve been working with for over 12 years. Every Halloween I do two shows for them. It’s a perfect client because they re-book me year after year and the audience is always different!

I suspect that for many performers the temptation would be to do their regular show, collect the cheque, and never think twice about it.

In this article I want to urge you to not be one of those people. Instead, I want you to think twice about the material that you’re performing.

Are you performing your regular show because it’s the absolute BEST show that you can deliver? Or, are you doing it because it’s EASY? 

For my daycare client I decided to include material from this summer’s library show. Much of that material I haven’t performed in several months so it was a great opportunity to keep it fresh in my repertoire. But, it wasn’t easy. I had to spend extra time pulling out all the props, then I had to create a set-list that would work, I had to create a special playlist, and I had to quickly rehearse the lines for one of the routines since it has a lengthy story as part of the script. At 11:30 at night while packing everything up all I could think was “It would be so much easier to do my regular act!”

Instead of doing what was easy I put in the effort and used the show as an opportunity to keep old material fresh.


The extra work paid off after the show was over and the client said “As always, you were amazing. And I loved the new routines!”

“Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.” Thomas A. Edison

I truly believe that performing is a muscle that you need to work out in order to keep it strong. I know for me that if there’s a routine I haven’t performed in over 9 months that it’s going to be rusty. But by regularly performing older material, even if it’s more work, I’m able to keep old material fresh so it’s always ready to go.

Each time you perform is an opportunity to work on and perfect your craft. Sure, you could just do what’s EASY, or you could put in the hard work and become a better performer and artist. Which one will you choose?