London Street Performers – Twin Features for Buzzfeed UK

London Street Performers Feature Buzzfeed UK

Following on from my homelessness feature, I pitched and was commissioned to write two features on London Street Performers for Buzzfeed UK:

– London Street Performers Share The Strangest Experiences They’ve Had With The Public

– What London Street Performers Are Really Thinking

For the first feature we used photos of the performers holding up whiteboards, along with embedded audio quotes and text; for the second – which focussed more on the performers’ backgrounds and how they made a living – we dropped the whiteboards and used more images of them performing.

Matt and I gathered the material we needed over two days; we started at Southbank Centre on a Saturday, then finished at Covent Garden the following weekend. We recorded short interviews with everyone we spoke to (interviewing a man dressed as a cat in front of a gaggle of confused children has definitely been one of my more surreal journalism experiences), and Matt took photos.

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.@samhaysom interviews 'Cat Man' #journalism

A post shared by Matthew Tucker (@mct_tucker) on

Between them, the two posts clocked up around 125,000 hits. The first post had a healthy traffic boost after American musician and performance artist Amanda Palmer shared the post on her Facebook page and wrote about it on her blog.