If your crib is going to be in a tight spot (due to circumstances or routining), then you'll have to allow for high economy of space on that crib. Again, you'll probably have to experiment with your computer to find a workable configuration and type size.
On the other hand, if you've got a decent amount of space for your crib then you have the luxury of larger type size and easier physical groupings of your information.
A good space saving possibility is to use abbreviations in your crib where possible. It's amazing how much less room it takes and is just as easy to use.
My main suggestion here would be to build situations into your presentations which allow for the use of the appropriate crib, based on your needs. If you need a lot of information, allow for a fairly large crib in your routining. Make sure your motivation and context give you ample opportunity to access a surface of decent size that will hold the volume of info you need. Either that or use a modular crib.
If your info needs are somewhat small you have more flexibility in crib size and location.
So, where and how do you hide your crib? Look at the props that you are using and your stage dressings. Is there an open space there somewhere that could logically hold a concealed crib? Is there some way you could logically conceal a crib inside of another prop (book, magazine, etc.)? Is there a way that you can work your stage movements in such a way that you can work a crib out of your pocket?
Obviously if you've got great eyesight and can read six point type or smaller, you can cram a lot of info onto one crib. On the other hand, if your eyes are like mine, as I grow older, smaller type is getting harder to read. These days I have to make any cribs that I use as easy to read as possible. Mind you I'm not using huge type, but I am taking my 'aging process' into consideration more and more these days.
If you wear bi- or trifocals, you already know all too well about the 'head tilt' that happens whenever you need to read something. It's a natural mannerism that you have developed through thousands of repetitions whenever you read something. You have to lean your head back a bit to focus your eyes through the proper portion of your iens. Needless to say, this action speaks volumes and is almost impossible to hide. Those who have reading glasses have a similar problem (like me!). We can't read without them so we have to put them on before accessing the crib. Obviously there's no way in the world to hide that (apart from using contacts, perhaps). What's the solution?
Don't hide it! Work your routine in such a way that when you have to access your crib, you're openly involved in reading something on stage. I'll give you a couple of techniques that work like a charm for this later on, but I'm sure you can imagine a scenario where this would be possible. Routine your performance so that you literally read something from a book or magazine out loud while also accessing your crib from that same source. This way, the actions that you have to take to read are motivated and make sense.
You can likewise use a crib that is concealed on a writing surface (more on this later). If you are writing your impressions on a tablet which has your crib concealed on it somehow, you'll be using your glasses in a manner that makes sense to the audience. It also allows you to read somewhat in the way you normally do.
Was this article helpful?