In the past identifying as a ‘Yo-Yo professional’ has really meant being in the role of sales. Obviously this includes elements of teaching, demonstrating and running contests but fundamentally the focus is to sell Yo-Yos which generate profit (and livlihood).
In my late teens I did this kind of job and really enjoyed it. But the elements that really excited me, the artistry in the performance, trying to create and share new tricks and provoking emotion with my skill were not as important as selling more Yo-Yos.
So I slowly moved away from the selling element and focused more and more on the performance.
There are a handful of professional Yo-Yo performers around the world, who make their living from performing Yo-Yo, rather than selling them (I also juggle for a living so I’m not sure if I strictly belong in this elite group). As far as I can see Don Robertson was the first person to take this approach (although he did go through periods of working for Yo-Yo companies, promoting their product).
I’m currently working in Leipzig, performing in a varieté theatre. I thought some might be interested in what my average day is like…