How do you scare?
There are many ways to work a scene. Which do you prefer? Which do you use(not always the same thing)?
Every haunt has it's jump out points, and every actor will use them at one time or another---but how?
Do you hit the beginning of a group?
Do you go for the person who looks most scared?
What do you do when you've got a full house and jumpouts won't work?
Or do you prefer the non-jumpout scare?
I go for the scared...cull the weak(though I like being in an early scene--one in which I'm one of the first scares they get)
I prefer creepy and disturbing to the jumpout. I want you to walk into my scene fully aware that I'm there and be so creeped out by what I do that you're running before you're halfway across the room.
How do you scare?
i evaluate each group and then do what experience tells me will work best for them. Sometimes it's jump out and boo, other times it's a dialog/funny conversation, or just creep out scares or whatnot.. I try to tailor it as much to the group as possible, and I listen to the actor in front of me that they encounter first, because that can give you a very valuable clue.
This question is kind of like asking a programmer how to write code. Your response will vary greatly.
I have the wonderful advantage of being armed with an air hammer and a whole plethora of metal and wood to scrape it against.
I've found that if I give them a little taste of the air hammer before I actually come out full force with it, I can get two or three scares out of a group.
Suspense is key, at least for my taste. I love banging on the walls and yelling things like "I'm waiting!" as they approach my scene.
I also have a spotlight, so I like standing in plain view, not moving a muscle. The whole time I just stare at them while idling the air hammer, giving them little jumps here and there. I wait until they're cowering in fear and anticipation, then I throw on the spotlight and just go ape shit.
I also like getting down on all fours and pressing the air hammer into the floor while crawling towards them, that gets even the toughest of tough guys.
I will agree with Imax on this one. You must tailor your scare/entertainment to the group. One of the things I like to do is to come in low at a group. People are not expecting this. I also like to cirlce a group while looking for the victim to zero in on. Keep them offguard not knowing what you are going to do next.
Oh, I know I'll get wildly different answers--that's the point. I want to see what people like to do.
Take tailoring...while everyone does it, there are ways and there are ways. Some people do it so much that they lack character consistency. People get scared, but it's just a scare, there's no real flavor to it. Granted, you're still getting the scare--it's just that your audience isn't getting all they could.
Others come up with versions of what they're doing. I've done a Nosferatu-looking vampire that goes from the refined routine to totally berserk in seconds--sometimes during the transition from one sylabble to the next.
But truthfully, I'm not trying to critique scare styles, I'm just wondering what types of scares get the actors blood racing, which do you consider your own, y'know?
I have been a zombie the past 2 years not a lot of talking this year mostly grunting or growling although the one time I did talk because I got her name "Jessica" she started crying real bad(go me!) I did feel stupid though because I don't think zombies should talk.
My favorite is when they fall down. As soon as they do this I drop immediately too and start crawling at them. I kinda consider it my signature scare.
Just do the generic jump out from the corner and yell.
Experience. It turns into instinct after the first 200 or so scares. It will also keep you from getting mocked, left looking like a fool, hit in the face, scolded by your boss, etc. Just tried and true experience. Sometimes you hit the front and then backoff and flank. Sometimes you hit the middle. It's just experience.
What I do sets me up perfectally for a scare. I have so swing out into the crowd from a 2x4 approx. 6 1/2 ft off the ground. Usually what I do is focus most of my energy to the front of the crowd. This usually pushes them back into the rest of the crowd and makes them anticipate whats going to happen next, which always makes them more scared. I always try to get into the middle of the crowd when I swing, which has resulted in a couple of hits to the face, but hey, if I don't get hit, that's a sign that I'm not scaring well enough. I work out at the Haunted Hoochie... you should check it out if you're in the area.
This will be a long post: They arrive here at The Ravens Grin after usually a long drive into the rural , desolate part of neglected Illinois seeing only empty fields and some wildlife along the dark highway.
Then they stand outside the house taking it all in, this is where it begins.
Those imaginations begin to ponder, the outside decorations help this to begin, being pretty "different" with the whole old-house thing also stimulates their imaginations for me to then have more to work with as far as influencing them once they are going through the house.
Once actually inside (If I haven't already scared them as I sold them their tickets?)
They see my front room. What would you imagine a front room would look like in a haunted, haunted house? There is real furniture and surreal furniture, old stuff, things I have created, artwork, nutty things(if you happen to look close)
I try to tell them alot of the actual haunted events that numerous of us have suffered within these walls since 1925 (First haunting that I know of) I usually tell it with alot of humor because it goes down better this way, if I tell it straight some get too scared or upset to continue, maybe because they realise that I am being truthfull with them.
There is almost no screaming at customers or jumping out at them, I prefer none, but employees, sometimes might do alittle of it(at their own risk)
I have always told them all :"No scaring- jumping because you might get punched, don't get closer than an arm's length (that punch-thing)
This house is probably very well lit up compared to most "Dark" attractions, it is almost all things I have made, they paid to see it , so allow them to see it!
The anticipation thing plays very well here for me, it also allows me to get into position to do the scare since I am usually alone leading the tours(except in season)
I have built several helpfull paths around the house to fascillitate my being able to be where I need to be when I need to be there.
Some of our scares here are sometimes left subtle, allowing real fear to manifest itself as doubt takes over . Of course subtle can't work in the middle of a screaming track meet, but I am willing to bet anyone anytime that those undefined subtle scare experiences stick in their brain many times longer than readilly knowing that someone just screamed in your face, they take that mystery and wonder home with them, it ferments and they return to possibly find out the truth.
I have scared people with items that the majority of the population would never think of as being scary or being able to scare anyone with.
Sometimes this requires a little set up to put certain ideas into the customer's mind so they are already operating on that track when the big train runs over them.
Sort of like mentioning "Anal Drip", then alittle later (in the dark) the sound and confession that "I just shitt my pants" is forthcoming! This gets them, almost every time!
I have complaints at the tour's conclusion from people who claimed their faces hurt...from laughing too much!
I have been open for tours almost 20 years(every night & SAt.& Sun, afternoons) quite a LONG season by anyone's standards!
This is a tourist attraction and being gross, bloody, overly aggressive would cost me alot of ticket sales all spring and summer long when the family in the van has little kids or Grandma who would then be remaining in the van.