Telling jokes and public speaking

Here is an excellent video of Andrew Stanton (famous playwright and director) giving a talk in TED.

I think speakers and comedians are both story tellers. The two groups BOTH convey messages through their stories (some stores are real while others are not). Comedians often use stories that are not real while speakers tell real stories. The message in Stanton’s story (joke) is that one simple mistake can brand you for life. His punch line was very funny and the audience got it in a nano second.

Less than half-way through the video, I noticed that he kept glancing down. The frequency picked up as he progressed. I found myself starting to count the number of times he did that – and that’s not good. I realized why he was doing that when I saw the teleprompter box on the floor in front of him.

I don’t understand why he had to refer to the prompter so often since there was plenty of time for him to refresh his memory during the video clips he was showing. He could have also written notes on the palm of his left hand ala Sarah Palin.

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2 responses to “Telling jokes and public speaking

  1. …or just learn it.. teleprompters are for readers not presenters… in my opinion…. or a crutch for the wobbly presenter!

  2. JIm….how are you? I think people use teleprompter because they want to make sure they speak every single word on the script. But if a presentation is a conversation with the audience – and it is – then you don;t really need to be “perfect”. Some speaking “coaches” push for perfection and turn their clients into rigid robots: they memorize every word (read every word from the teleprompter) and script every gesture, etc.

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