Handling hecklers: Lessons from a comedian

Here's a simple method for finding out whether those shouts are good-natured or not.

  • Not every audience member who speaks out during a comedy show is a heckler. But there's a way to test the waters without upsetting your audience, says comedian Paul F. Tompkins.
  • By engaging in a civil way with the person who spoke out, you either give them an opportunity to add more fun to the show, or they'll reveal their true colors.
  • If the person ends up being a heckler after you've attempted including them in the conversation, the audience will be on your side when you shut that person down.
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This is how an illusionist targets your unconscious mind

Juggling conscious experience with the machinations of the mind can create the ultimate audience experience.

  • Magicians are actually very effective applied psychologists. They're familiar with the workings of both the conscious and unconscious mind.
  • During his act, renowned psychological illusionist Derren Brown uses the technique of bafflement to bypass participants' conscious filters and get a maximum response to the trick.
  • Derren Brown returns to the stage with his new live, one-man show, Showman. Check it out here.
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Why are pop songs getting sadder than they used to be?

The use of words related to negative emotions has increased by more than one third.

Ron Howard/Redferns

Are popular songs today happier or sadder than they were 50 years ago?

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Elon Musk writes a hit song. Listen now.

The tech billionaire Elon Musk releases a song where he performs himself.

Getty Images / Elon Musk
  • Elon Musk released an EDM song on SoundCloud.
  • The track "Don't doubt ur vibe" has racked up millions of listens.
  • Musk said he wrote the lyrics and performed them himself.
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10 essential new skills you can start learning today

From career changes to just picking up a new leisure activity, all of these skill bundles are hundreds of dollars off their regular price right now.

  • These 10 skills training bundles will have you mastering a new talent.
  • Subjects range from music producing and graphic design to electrical engineering and stock trading.
  • Each skill training bundle is currently at least 95% off.
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