How much does the applause cost

And you know that on the professional stage there are "hired spectators" who are engaged in creating artificial success or failure of an artist or an entire performance. In modern terms, these are PR people in theatrical art, and they are called claqueur (French claqueur, from French claque - claque).

A group of professional claqueurs is called a clack. Using the effect of "social proof", they try to make the audience in theaters applaud, shout "Bravo!" or vice versa, boo and show discontent.

The ancestry of the claka can be traced back to the ancient Egyptian mourners, tearing their hair out and breaking their knees at a pharaoh's funeral. But officially it is believed that the claka owes its birth to the Roman emperor Nero: the tyrant personally dabbled in acting and really needed applause. People of art did not disdain klaka in order to accelerate their success or, conversely, to annoy the rival. Already in the III century BC. e. the playwright-comedian Philemon hired claqueurs against his rival Menander.

Little by little, the klaka became a powerful force, and her tasks began to include not only benevolence, but also public indignation. It costs Klake nothing to ruin any premiere, and therefore every artist thirsting for success is looking for a common language with her. In the Grand Opera and La Scala, the claca even influenced the poster and could “shout” any undesirable performance. Once opponents tried to disrupt FI Chaliapin's performances at La Scala in 1901 using claqueurs. The next day, a letter from FI Chaliapin appeared in one of the major political newspapers in Milan.

“Some Klaki chef came to my house, ” wrote Chaliapin, “and offered to buy applause. I have never bought applause, and this is not in our customs. I brought my artistic creation to the public and I want it, only its free verdict: good or bad. I am told that klaka is a custom of the country. I do not wish to obey this custom. In my opinion, this is some kind of robbery. "

Professional clappers are also capable of dirty tricks, for example, a few hours before the performance, the artist is informed about his mother's heart attack. Or a ballerina is given a broom instead of flowers (considered the biggest insult). That is why the artists try to be friends with the clerks and, in exchange for the “hospitality” of the audience, supply their “workers” with finances and tickets for performances.

The head of the claqueters explains his behavior at the performances as follows. When they applaud well-deserved eminent artists, they use those seconds to catch their breath. And the newly arrived artists, newcomers literally panic when they dance in complete silence. Here they come to the rescue of clappers, who are in the right places and turn on the audience with applause. And sometimes it happens that those artists whom the claqueters hate, they are able to fill up with this applause. It is enough only during the fouette to start clapping irregularly for the artist to go astray and even fall.

However, for all the grimaces of the klaki, there is nothing to blame on the mirror. It will be completely boring if arrogant or ridiculous, paid or unselfish, but always lively "bravo" one day is replaced by a tape-recorder "noise of applause" in the speakers.