Daniil Kharms: On Laughter

 1. Advice to humourous performers
     I  have noticed  that  it  is very important to determine  the point at
which laughter can be induced. If you want the auditorium to laugh, come out
on  to the  stage  and  stand there  in  silence  until  someone bursts  out
laughing. Then wait  a little bit longer until someone else starts laughing,
and in  such a way  that everyone can hear.  However, this laughter must  be
genuine and claqueurs,  in such an instance,  should  not be  used. When all
this  has taken  place, then  the point at which laughter can be induced has
been reached. After  this you  may proceed to your programme  of humour and,
rest assured, success is guaranteed.

     2. Where are several sorts of laughter.
     There is the  average sort of laughter, when the whole hall laughs, but
not at full volume. There is the strong sort of laughter, when just one part
of the hall or another laughs, but at full volume, and the other part of the
hall remains silent as, in this case, the laughter doesn't get to it at all.
The former sort of laughter requires vaudeville delivery  from a  vaudeville
actor, but the latter sort is better. The morons don't have to laugh.


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