After that introductory performance, we were hooked. The energy that it brought out of us, the energy we saw in return from the kids, it was amazing. The two of us in bands quit that night, and an offer from a parent who had seen our performance the day earlier came in. We immediately agreed, and decided that it was formally time for us to come up with a name. We wanted something that sounded funny, and wouldn’t be taken to seriously, but that kids could actually pronounce. It took a surprisingly long time for us to decide on the Lingonberries. It was a random suggestion that made all of us adults laugh, we knew it was perfect.
Our next performance as a group was much more polished than our first one, and had us coming up with whole skits. We began to really formulate an entire show out of our songs. We would get the kids to sing along, to pantomime the movements of our music. It was a group of about thirty children, and anyone who has had a group of kids like that together knows that the chances of pandemonium are high. We had their attention from the moment we stepped out into the backyard makeshift stage. It was such an incredible experience that the second show topped our first. We were so nervous the first time out that it would be so difficult for us serious musicians to be taken seriously by either kids or adults, and yet the second one we walked out with confidence.
You may think that it’s a lot of hype for performing for a bunch of toddlers and preschool kids, but let me tell you. When an adult dislikes your show, they just ignore it, or get up and walk out. When a child hates your show…they start a revolt, and soon all children follow suit. We have had shows that have gone very badly. As any performer has during their times of growth, and even in the stages of fame they hit. There are some shows that just go really badly. For the most part though, we have been fortunate. I don’t know if it’s us personally, or our jokes, or the songs we pick, but kids just love the shows.
We began to perform more and more locally, and soon had kids requesting us by name for school events, birthday parties, and festivals directed towards the youth. We have had the chance to perform in hospitals, to sick kids in need of some entertainment, and those are the shows that really touch your heart. To see the faces that probably haven’t smiled much in the past little while just light up. To see them using the effort to pantomime, to sing along, it made us all a little misty even as we were performing. There’s something about making a child laugh, to have them enjoy your performance, it’s something we never got out of the adult crowds.