These are show notes taken from an audio interview.
To listen to the actual interview, please use the player above.
In this interview, Fielding West brings us into his career telling lots of stories from his past and then sharing with us some valuable tips on effective communication from stage. There are many great lesson to be learned from this talk. Enjoy!
Fielding is a comedy magician, teacher, and keynote speaker from Las Vegas.
He’s performed in a number of showrooms in Vegas, Tahoe, and Atlantic City like the Tropicana, Sahara, and Caesar’s Hotels. He’s appeared on a number of TV shows on a number of networks like A&E’s An Evening at the Improv, and CBS’ Entertainment Tonight.
He’s been the opening act for top names like Liza Minnelli, Phyllis Diller, The Temptations, and Earth Wind & Fire.
He also writes comedy for other magicians and runs a class called Stagecraft 101 where he teaches people how to communicate more effectively from stage.
Muhammad Ali says, “He’s one crazy MoFo!”
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Drink a lot of water and carry a big stick.
Treat people the way you want to be treated.
Effective Communication from Stage
• When he works with people, he observes them to find out what their best performance traits are and works to amplify them.
• Tells about an absolute failure he experienced when speaking publicly for the first time.
• Lack of preparation is the biggest mistake he sees people make before going up on stage in front of people.
• Think before you speak, but listen before you think.
• The difference between the professionals and the amateurs, is the length of their pauses.
• Breaking the 4th wall is the true communication of a variety act.
• Timing in communication.
• You can communicate so much with the eyes alone.
• Imagining the audience is in the underwear is the stupidest idea for public speaking!
• Ping pong effect: making eye contact with multiple people in the audience
Four things you can immediately do to improve your stage presence:
• Stand up straight.
• Projecting louder than you would normally speak and speak clearly.
• Eyes looking directly at the audience.
• Hydration – make sure you’re properly hydrated.
Other Topics Covered
• Tells about how he got nose-to-nose with Muhammed Ali.
• Overcoming handicaps.
• Tells about his journey, peppered with all kinds of stories!
• Talks about how he was always causing trouble for his dad who traveled the President of the United States.
• Learning from mistakes.
• How Fielding was inspired by Steve Martin to go after comedy and magic.
• How all of his constant performing prepared him for many lucky opportunities offered to him.
• Making a plan for what you want to accomplish.
Quit worrying about what other people think and quit talking about other performers. You cannot elevate yourself by putting down another performer.
Take every show you can get and if possible, record it.
Recommended books and resources:
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Where can we find Fielding West?
Stagecraft101.net (Coming Soon)
BillyTopit.com (Fielding plays the Mayor of Las Vegas)