No Disappearing Acts…It’s Just Not Cool

by on Aug.25, 2011, under Syndicated from the Web

Reposted from Rotting Flesh Radio | Go to Original Post

by: RFR Casket Crew Hatter 99

The time has come for me as a scareactor to build out my September/October calendar, ensuring that all of my days scheduled for costume fittings, rehearsals, and active haunting nights are free from all other earthly commitments.  As I’m sure that many others are doing the same, I want to offer a few tips on attendance.

Hat ON.

Terror on the Fox Haunted Attraction

Terror on the Fox Haunted Attraction

It’s true that we in the Haunt industry have a ton of fun at our jobs, probably more fun than is allowed by law.  The party-like atmosphere that we oftentimes enjoy makes makes it difficult for me to call it “Work.”  Of course it is in reality very hard work for everyone, but the connotation of “Work” implies something boring and not particularly rewarding.  For the next couple of moments, though, let’s associate what we do to the word “Work” and accept that we as scareactors need to exhibit a certain degree of professionalism, particularly when it comes to attendance.

The owners of the haunt hired us, either as paid employees or as volunteers, to perform as live entertainers inside their attractions.  When they hired us, most likely we committed to performing all nights or had a predetermined agreement for select nights so that they can plan accordingly.  I doubt that many haunts hire on a “show up if you want to” basis.  Sure, the owners could have instead invested in a brand new animatronic that will be there, on time, every night, but they recognize the value that live haunt actors have inside an attraction, and in turn we owe them a performance that won’t disappoint.

Lexington Screampark Haunted Attraction

Lexington Screampark Haunted Attraction

By recognizing the investment that the haunt owners make in us, hopefully that’s enough for you to drag your rotting carcass to the dressing room each night.  If you’re still considering skipping out to catch a football game, though, consider your fellow workers.  Unless you’re a a useless lump on a log, you probably have something valuable to offer your group.  And I’m willing to bet that anyone invested enough in the industry to be listening to Rotting Flesh Radio and browsing its website is probably someone who has some skills and is valued by his or her fellow workers.  So ignoring the few instances where we’re better off without Whiny Wilma or Lazy Larry, your fellow workers are counting on you to be there.  If you don’t show up, your spot might have to be filled by someone else.  Do the concessions people have to make due with one less person if one is called to fill your spot?  Does a scareactor in one position have to be called away to fill yours?  Or does a scareactor now have to cover double the area?  Logic tells us that two actors, both working hard, will be more effective than one overworked actor who is spread thinly.  Or maybe your spot will just be left empty for the evening.  In any of these cases, the overall experience of the haunt will be diminished.  Will patrons have to make due with a suspiciously unstaffed spooky hallway?  Will people have to wait an extra ten minutes in line for a funnel cake if the concession stand is understaffed? How would that then impact the ticket sales?  If people feel the haunt was understaffed, they’re probably not going to come back.  It’s a domino effect, because the absence of one person can’t be swept under the rug.

Of course there’s always the “circumstances beyond our control” clause.  Things happen, so always be sure to check with your supervisors on the emergency absence policies and procedures.  As professionals, though, it is absolutely imperative to never do a “no-show” without informing your supervisor.  A stunt like that will put you on the blacklist faster than that kid who always wears white shoes to work scare.

Hat OFF.

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