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« What is a Listener Guest Of Honor? | Main | Any stage etiquette tips for performers? »

What is a Toastmaster?

The Toastmaster role appears to be defined slightly differently, depending on the convention in question. In general, however, a Toastmaster is usually seen as the Master/Mistress of Ceremonies and does all the introductions for concerts.


What is a Toastmaster? What responsibilities does a Toastmaster have at a convention?

From John O'Halloran:

"It's tough for me to call a TM a 'guest' because it's a hard working job at filk convention.

A TM is the Master/Mistress of Ceremonies for the convention. Introducing all the concerts, which when a Filk Con has many short concerts and Single/Double shots, can make for a long day.

Some cons may also request that the TM be the time keeper. Letting performers know when they have a limited amount of time left/are out of time or being the arbatrator to allow a encore after time has expired.

In trade the TM usually should receive:
A major full concert slot.
All the perks of being the GOH of the convention.
(Room, board, travel, etc, etc...)
If a member of the concom, no other at con duties."


From Bill Sutton:

"Toastmasters don't always get both room AND travel; it can vary a lot with how healthy the convention is financially."


From Margaret Middleton:

"When I was TM at OVFF awhile back, a large percentage of the performers I introduced were people I'd never heard before. This pretty well forced me to introduce MYself to them ahead of time, in order to get names and faces correctly matched-up, and in one case (The Fibs) to find out how the group-name was pronounced. Even if the TM DOES know all the guests, it is a good idea to check up on what they might have out that is New And Wonderful and they want it mentioned-particularly."


From "mdlbear" on LJ:

"Trying to be both toastmaster and timekeeper was something of a strain; those two functions should be separate if possible.
It was sometimes difficult for me to track down performers before I introduced them; luckily I knew most of the locals. Somebody who isn't as terminally shy as I am would no doubt have an easier time of it."


From Zander Nyrond:

"Well, as a frequent Toastmaster at the British Nycons, which took place at our house twice yearly, the duties consisted of standing over the toaster, putting in whatever anyone handed me (subject to minimal screening: DVDs don't toast well) and making sure the damned machine didn't burn it.
The post carried very little in the way of status, but I flattered myself I was being useful.

Comments? Suggestions? Please post below.

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