Les Clarke writes...

One of the most well received bits of my warm up is the monkey changing a sign from "10 mins to start" to '5 mins to start' and getting it wrong. I "borrowed" the idea from Martin Bridle, as told in Geoff Felix's 'Conversations With Punch' book. I have never seen how Martin does it, or anyone elses version, but I took the overall idea and developed what worked for me. In offering any ideas for business this is very much what I hope people will do, perhaps even store the idea away until it fits in with a direction they are heading.

Let the baby stand up for himself.

My offering here is to suggest something I do which to be quite honest I've never checked how many other profs also do. The idea is that the Baby can actually be placed on the playboard so that he stands up by himself. This allows three characters to be on stage at once, and Punch & Judy can argue about the baby as they stand either side of him. I have a piece of dowel sticking out from the body, hidden by his clothes, and he is placed in the holes through the handle of a bulldog clip that is fixed to the playboard. This was done originally as a trial prior to drilling a hole, but I've just kept on using it. Judy places him there initially, and tells him to "Stay there!", as she turns to speak to the audience a quick twist on his stick gives the impression he is about to sneak away, she turns and grabs him, " You stay there!", repeat for effect.