Talk to street performers, and they’ll tell you that donation levels vary greatly depending on the time of day, time of year, the weather, and location (think Venice Beach, Central Park, and other places crowded with leisurely foot traffic). And we’ve all had that depressing moment watching a great musician being ignored.
But who are the performers drawing absolutely gigantic, lucrative crowds? Dance troupes with amazing acrobatics and upbeat music tend to do well, especially if there’s a guy passing a hat around. In fact, anything that involves theatrics, crowd participation, eye-popping surprises, or a fun game tend to do better, even if the music isn’t as good.
Here’s one idea from a NY-based group of Julliard musicians called CDZA, who found a clever way to get everyone involved (and make about ten times the amount of money in the process).