What does it mean to entertain? Does it have to be funny? Humorous? "Light"? Family-friendly (whatever that means?! - discussion was had on what this actually means an what it communicates to audiences) If we go with funny, why do we feel our show should be funny? Someone said that it makes it easier to get people along to come and watch ("What is your show like? Yes, but is it funny?"), while also pointing out that "funny" is quite an easy thing to do. Is, perhaps, something funny, or farcical easier to communicate? It was noted that it's certainly easier to sell.

But what is "entertaining"? Doesn't it mean something that engages people? Something that people want to watch? Something that doesn't bore them? It's not restricted to it being funny. Horror films can be entertaining, as can something absurd. Also, it seems that it has to do with context of the work, like the specific expectations of each sector/venue/genre. For example, in street art or circus work the public might expect to be made to laugh, while in performance art and installations humour can be consider as something that compromises the integrity of the work. Particularly important questions when we deal with outdoor and public spaces, as people feel ownership of those spaces, we have all had experiences of people getting angry, it was even mentioned that a performer was attacked by a member of the public once. Especially in areas where income and quality of living are low and people get angry at their local council and complain about where public funds go to, if a show it's something that one or more members of the public don't like it can create a feeling of "Is this where my council tax is going?!". If the art doesn't keep people happy they can start accusing the council and the artists of spending their council tax money on something as frivolous as art on the street. Someone pointed out especially liking performing on shopping streets or near shopping areas because to him, this is a very frivolous activity that people do with their money and their time and therefore stand there and do something (a show) of no use whatsoever! People seem to not get it, that art is good and that we enrich their environment. However, shouldn't we, instead of pointing fingers at the public, ask ourselves questions regarding how we uninvitedly bring art to people's doorsteps? Why should they like it? They wouldn't have any complains if someone did the exact same show in a theatre or a gallery. Yes, but people will decide to spend their money to go to a football game. This is however, their choice, while they're not feeling that they had a choice, or that they were consulted with regards to a piece of outdoor arts. It was pointed out that there are so many funded and uninvited displays and objects in our cities like massive advertising, for example. Why people don't have a problem with that, but they have a problem with art? Then we talked about it's mainly the local councils (and less the artists) that are concerned with keeping the public happy, and want to make sure that they show that the council is funding is not going to upset, offend, displease, annoy anyone. Is that even a predictable value? People get offended too easily nowadays. Local councils need to keep people happy as they feel threatened due to funding cuts and also they need to lure voters, by giving them art that they will like. In participatory work, or when the public is involved in the making or performing of an outdoor show, there seems to be quite a different spirit amongst the public, they don't complain. Does getting people involved make it easier to keep the public happy?