The idea is always the hardest part for me because it’s the biggest part. It’s the essence, the heart, the ganas of what i’m bringing to the stage.
For me a good idea is one that i’m absolutely in love with and is neither too narrow or too broad. Too narrow and you’re stuck within a very limited and uninspired scope. Too broad and you loose focus of what you’re trying to say.
While i’ve already come up with my theme for my Miss Diva USofA give-up, i’m going to take you behind-the-scenes and into THE process. Here we gooooooooooooooooo!
My process begins the second i know or book a show.
i’ll spend the first month or so – depending on how far out in advance i know about it – letting ideas percolate in the back of my head + taking mental notes of anything that catches my attention.
During this incubation time, usually one idea will come forefront as a really good one but – being the perfectionist that i am – i just can’t get myself to go with it. i mean there are SO many ideas out there waiting to be captured by my brain and brought to life why on earth would i even ponder doing the first thing that popped into my head?!?!?
That would be waaaaaaaaaay too easy and insane!
So i tuck idea #1 away and start generating other ideas by asking myself this question and keeping in mind what + who the performance if for:
In this case my answer to myself looks something like this:
Because this is a relatively new audience that is not as familiar with the diversity + length of who i am as a performer, i want to create a show that will tell a colorful and entertaining picture of my life as a performer. i want to show the audience who i am and have been as a performer + all those things that have lead up to THIS (being crowned the first ever Diva USofA) moment.
Now that i have a clear vision of what i want to say, i turn my attention to:
Here, i list out every idea that i’ve ever said, “hmmmmm, i’d like to do THAT someday” to. (And of course my answer includes idea #1 – yep, the same one i originally said no to 🙂 ):
Bollywood/Hindu, Bellydance/middle eastern theme, 80’s, Alice in Wonderland, zombie Apocalypse, and Roller boogie.
AWE-SOME!! Now that i’ve got my creative juices flowing and my imagination pumping, new ideas come flying into my head. i grab some paper and write all those bad boy ideas down. All of them. i go into mad max mode and brain dump e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g. i don’t stop and think that will NEVER work, i just get EVERYTHING down.
Here’s a shot of my actual idea cloud i did for this performance:
Chaotic, i know. But every idea is captured. Score!
Now here i can go one of two ways depending on my mood.
i either take a step back from ALL my ideas and let them sit in my aura for a while OR i’ll immediately begin crossing off any ideas that don’t sing to my little drag heart.
In this case, i knew some things i wrote down were waaay too narrow for a full scale production and i immediately got rid of them – splash, miss piggy, etc. And then some of the ideas could umbrella others like Jem and the Holograms could totally fall under an 80’s theme.
After i made any obvious edits, i was left with 3 solid ideas that i kept going in circles with
Alice in Wonderland
(And in case you are wondering, yes, idea #1 still made the cut 🙂 ).
Because it was only September and i still had some time, i decided to let it go for a while.
Over thinking can kill even the most genius of ideas.
Flash forward a few weeks . . .
i now have 3 great ideas any of which could be potentially UH MAZ ING shows. So how do i make my final selection? i ask myself one final and important question:
What feels right is usually 99.9% idea #1 i.e. the first idea i came up with but ignored.
That original idea is almost always the most organic and inspired. So if i know this about myself already, why go through all this crazy mad long process?
Because even though i wish it/i was different, i know that this idea roundabout is my process and i’ve learned to trust it – even if it takes a long time.
i’ve also learned that it’s not just about the ideas themselves, but about silencing that damn loud and obnoxious inner critic that i and every other performer/creative has. When idea #1 popped into my head at the very beginning, my inner critic was saying horrible things like, “that idea TOTALLY isn’t good enough for that caliber of a show” or “You want to do that?!?! EVERYONE does that. It’s old and tired” blah, blah, blah.
My process of acknowledging and filtering all possible ideas strengthens my reserve and belief in myself (and in my abilities) to pull something this big off.
i need this time to build up the courage to say yes to myself because the biggest part of one’s success is making it through your project’s toughest obstacle – oneself.
And i am my own worst and meanest critic ~ always.
The point is trust your process. Your intuition will never lead you astray :).
Ready to try out it yourself?!?! Here – in a much prettier and user friendly format 🙂 – are some Createsheets i made for you to help plan your next show, project, world domination takeover, etc. Click on each createsheet to download, print, and use!
Createsheet #1 – Questions to help get your creative juices flowing.
Createsheet #2 – The idea cloud is a pretty place to scribble down ALL your phenom ideas.
Createsheet #3 – The final question to ask yourself when choosing THE perfect idea for your show/project.
Feel free to use them like i did, mix and match them, or as a springboard to help spark + create your own process. Whatever, however – JUST GET CREATING!!!!!!!!
Guess what starlets?!?! You are completely caught up to where i’m currently at with project give-up. It’s time to go live!! Make sure you’re following me on twitter for my moment to moment creative epiphanies and subscribe to my list by entering your email to the right for updates and goodies.
Thanks for going down the rabbit hole with me 😉 And don’t forget to tell me all about YOUR Wonderland in the comments below or by dropping me a line ♥.
Love, light + brilliant ideas,
P.S. Missed the first post that explains what all this creative hoopla is about? Get a refresher here.
P.P.S. Oh and in case you are wondering the theme that i chose for my give-up in March is . . .
This is great. Thank you so much for sharing this. I really value and appreciate your dedication to the art.
Sophia St. James
Miss Arizona Diva USofA