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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The side walk shuffle » » Incredible street act -- the Night Watchman (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Bill Palmer
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One of the cleverest street acts I have ever seen is not a street act in the sense of a juggler or a magician, but a character who makes a fortune doing two shows a night in Rothenburg ob der Tauber -- a small town in southern Bavaria. The show is a walking tour of the town that explains the history of the place and shows some of the more interesting sites and sights, including the big dunking cage at the Kriminalmuseum, where they would dunk anyone who violated any of the many city ordinances. For example, if you bought a loaf of bread and it didn't fit properly into a certain recess in a stone near the town square, the baker would be dunked for selling to small a loaf. If he sold you a short dozen, he would be dunked. To quote the Night Watchman -- They had no television in the Middle Ages, so their entertainment was generally baker dunking.

Most of us would think an historical walking tour would be as boring as all get out. It's not. The fellow has a great personality and knows the history of the town. He gives you a rare glimpse into the middle ages. But here's the best part -- the hat pass.

Everyone knows that the tour costs 5 euros each. But he doesn't take the money at the beginning. Instead, as he walks through town, the crowd builds and builds, and before you know it, it has grown from a dozen people or so to 40 or 50. So at the end of the tour, he takes the money, sells CD's and DVD's and talks to the customers. He does one tour in English and a second in German.

Most street performers could learn a thing or two from him. One thing is his personality is engaging. Another is that he doesn't let it get dull. He has the tour and the script timed so that he walks for a few minutes, gets to an historical spot, explains what happened there in a semi-humorous manner, and keeps everyone's attention.

By the end, he is not just another guy from the town, but you feel like you know him, and you WANT him to take your money.

So -- there is another place to draw some inspiration from.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Pete Biro
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Dunk you very much.
STAY TOONED... @ www.pete-biro.com
Mario Morris
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This sounds simmallar to the tour run by my freaind Noel Britan in Bath UK he was a top street performer and now a well known comedian. It is called Bizzare Bath http://www.bizarrebath.co.uk . This is in no doubt walking street theatre none historical total hysterrical P*ss take of Bath. This runs for seven days a week and is a must see if you ever find your self in Bath. I beleave it runs for 9mounths of the year cant be sure. I think he splits the shifts with another pal of his.
Mario
PS their is a lot of use of magic in this show
Dynamike
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Thanks Bill. That was better than watching an ally oop dunk.
Bill Palmer
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I like Bath, and I'm not just referring to the one here in my house. I have been to Bath twice. Both times were parts of tours, and were during the day, so I didn't get to see anything like that, but I will definitely catch his show if I get back there again.

I noticed that a number of the towns in Germany are doing this now.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
mrunge
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Sounds like a lot of fun in these European towns today. When I was there in the 80's, I didn't see anything like this going on. They had a few street performers in the larger cities (London, Edinburgh, Munich, etc...), but not very many. Sounds like another good reason to take another trip back again!

Mark. Smile
Bill Palmer
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I particularly like Rothenburg ob der Tauber. It is almost exactly like it was during the Middle Ages, although much of it was flattened during WW II. People from all over the US sent money to rebuild the town.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Mario Morris
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You will love it to bits Bill.
Mario
PS Thanks for your addvise.
Airave
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Have you visited Nürnberg, Bill?
It was also devastated in WW2
and rebuilt to be like the old days.

Rothenburg is nice, but way too touristy
for my tastes. Distracts from the history.

My sister from US visited this summer
and we went on such a tour with a very
knowledgable and entertaining guide
through Nürnberg. I learned much as well-
although I live close by and have for years.

Always learn the most about my town
when visitors visit! Smile
Bill Palmer
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I've spent several days in Nürnberg. The first time I went there, I spent several hours at the Dürerhaus and walked around the town square quite a bit.

When we went to Rothenburg, we spent more time looking at the Kriminalmuseum and the "wonderful toys" in it than we did anywhere else, other than the Night Watchman tour. I really like museums.

Naturally we visited the Church with the big shrine in it.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Jeff Dial
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My sister and her family lived in Germany for 6 years. They almost always took visitors to Rothenberg.

They sent me the history book on criminal history from the Kriminalmuseum. Not only would the baker be dunked for not enough rolls in the bag, he could be dunked for too many - so much for entrepreneurship.
"Think our brains must be too highly trained, Majikthise" HHGG
Airave
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Do you mean the Church/Shrine in Nürnberg?
With the Saint's bones... (grrr, name escapes me
at the moment)?

Must admit that all my US visitors have wanted to see
and have visited Rothenburg. It does have a good rep.
And It does have its charm!

Kriminalmuseum...., hehe... the Germans do love rules.
And the enforcement of them in cold beurocratic ways....
Though there does seem to be a certain passion and
creativity in those old "toys". *shudders*
Bill Palmer
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I was thinking of the Jakobskirche with the Heiligeblut Altar.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Airave
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Right. I was thinking of "The bronze shrine of St. Sebald
(1508-19, workshop of Peter Vischer) contains the bones of the
patron saint, who died near Nürnberg sometime before 1070.".
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