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The Greatest Show on EarthIndian Nations Council

Crisco Make-up - Mix together 2 teaspoons white vegetable shorting, 5 teaspoons cornstarch, 1 teaspoon white flour, a few drops of glycerin, and any food color desired. For brown color, add 2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa. This make-up gives a soft skin-like texture and is easily removed.

Tempera Paint - Can be painted directly on the face. This can be used without fear of allergy problems. It can be washed off.

Lipstick - Can be used for both lip and cheek color.

Eyebrow Pencil - Can be used to darken or change the shape of eyebrows, to line the eyes, to make freckles, mustaches, sideburns, and wrinkles.

Cornstarch - Powdered into the hair helps make characters look older. The hair usually begins to gray at the temples first, and in streaks.

Talcum Powder - Can be patted into the hair to make the character appear to be graying.

Black Crayon - Can be used to simulate missing teeth.

Remember:  The more light used on stage, the more make-up necessary.

Apply make-up after the character is in costume, using a make-up cape or towel to protect the costume.

Tips on Creating a Character

To make a wig of white hair - use an old stocking. Pull the stocking down over the hair and ears. Tie it off at the top and cut off what's left. Use scotch tape to fasten white cotton balls all over the stocking.

To make curls - Cut strips of paper. Curl each strip by holding one end between your left thumb and a long pencil. Press lightly with your thumb and pull the strip over the pencil with your other hand. Do this several times for a stiff curl. Sew or tape the curls to the stocking wig.

To make braids - Stretch about 3 strips of crepe paper, 3/4" wide. Twist each strip around the others. Now braid the three strips together.

Using nose putty - You can make a big nose or cover your own eyebrows. It can also be used to form a raised scar or bump or change the shape of your face. All other make-up goes over it.

New-looking wounds - Can be drawn with lipstick or fingernail polish. Old scars can be drawn with eyebrow pencil and powdered over.

Bald head - Use an old bathing cap (white or flesh color) for the base. Paint or glue yarn around edges.

To highlight features - Use rouge on cheeks and eyebrow pencil on eyes. Powder over this make-up to "set".

To make a wig - Use an old mop head and dye to desired color, wear as is or add a hat.


Simple scenery is fun for boys to make. It is a good den project. It adds to the mood of the skit and makes the skit more believable. Keep these things in mind when building your scenery.

Scenery should be simple. It should provide an idea or suggestion of what is to come.

Most scenery can be made of corrugated cardboard. It is easy to find and to work with.

Wood boards can be nailed to the back of the scenery to make it more sturdy or to help it stand up and  keep painted cardboard from curling.

Let the boys do the painting. Guidelines can be drawn with heavy pencil to show what colors go where. Latex or tempera paint are the best on cardboard, and it washes off the boys as well.

Felt tip markers can be used on cardboard that has been painted a light color, to but in detail work or the whole design, if you wish.

When using latex to cover large areas, apply it with a roller. Latex paint is inexpensive. Sometimes the boys can bring left-over paint from home.

Skits and PuppetsPage X

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