Sunday, November 23, 2014

Hooping for nothin; tricks for free

If you haven't heard by now, here's the short version of the story: one of Oprah's booking agents contacted a hooper to perform at one of Oprah's stops on her most recent tour; but to do it without payment. For more details on the story check out Revolva's recount of the events in her open letter to Oprah.

I personally don't know much about Revolva, but from what I've come to find out is that she is not a joke in the hoop community. The support she received from others was far and wide, her letter went pretty viral. This is not someone [like me] that hoops more or less for a creative outlet and some fun. She puts a lot of time and energy into her craft. Just like any other artist, a hula hoop performance artist spends a lot of time and energy into their practice, the costumes, the travel to get to the gig, the cost of fuel if it's a fire show or the cost of LED props, insurance....the list could go on. This is why performers expect to get paid - it's their work. If Revolva was good enough to be asked to perform on Oprah's tour, she must be worthy of some reimbursement.

On the flip side to all of that, I came across the article in a business flow arts group I'm in on Facebook: "8 Reasons Every Artist Should Work for Free." It puts things into a healthy perspective, I think. There is a difference between demanding money for something that you produce that isn't top notch, and being top notch and knowing that the event planner has the means to pay what you are worth.

I wonder if all of this press reached her and if she ever gave it a second thought. If anyone knows that Oprah had a response to Revolva's letter please post in the comments below!

And you know what is even worse?! Oprah is a hooper too! She's one of us!

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