Steve Barnett is the world's premier motivational non-speaker.
Steve's presentations are comic, uplifting, healing, spiritual and great fun!
Performing internationally to audiences ranging from 25 to 25000 people, Steve utilizes African percussion, mime and humour to create an inspiring interactive experience that transcends cultural and hierarchical boundaries.
He draws on the rhythm and energy of the audience, making them an integral part of the presentation. They are orchestrated to participate in a way that
focuses, empowers and thoroughly entertains.
Steve unites the audience in a collective rhythmic euphoria that changes their perceptions and encourages positive transformation.
This explains - as one guest said -
There are certain things that cannot be described, they just have to be experienced. One such event was sitting in a West End Theatre last week beating out intricate percussion tunes in perfect harmony with 500 other members of the audience.
Our conductor was South African Steve Barnett - the world's premier motivational non-speaker. Without saying a word Barnett led his audience-turned-orchestra merely by a dash of his hand and an expressive face.
To complicate matters, we were all issued with colour-coded drums (rolled plastic tubes that made a quite satisfying sound when hit by a chopsticks like drum stick). Each colours was of a different pitch and with some clever indicating, Barnet had every colour group beating its own rhythm in time with the others.
Quite spectacular. Especially if you consider he was faced with a tough crowd - a selection of straight faced businessmen. Barnett was performing as one of Britain's ten best corporate entertainment acts at The Real Variety Show in The Playhouse.
He was as funny as any of the comedians, many familiar names from television and radio, while the audience grabbed the chance to vent some energy and were amazed at the music they managed to make.
But it isn't just about fun and games, Barnett explains. "The energy that we put in as individuals and groups makes up the bigger music, in the same way as our contribution to our company and community can combine to make up a greater working harmony."
By letting the tea lady beat her drum next to the CEO, Barnett says, barriers are dropped and employees realize that everyone has a different input to give.
If you delve deeper, he believes, there is also a spiritual value to be found in rhythm. "African music is cyclical, and those cycles reflect the cycles of life."
But Barnett never preaches to his audience. "What they take from it, it what they need," he says, whether it be a meditation session, some stress relief or simply a laugh.
And because the only words he speaks are "thank you" at the very end, it is truly a multi national show, proving that music is a universal language.
Drumming & rhythm has been a part of civilization for millennia, Africa is the drum continent, it is here that drumming and percussion, song and dance, remains an essential group activity.
In our modern society, group drumming has also found its rhythm. This unique and communal medium is being used as a tool within the business environment as a means to facilitate team building, stress-release, interpersonal interaction & celebration.
The parallels between the modern business environment and making music are surprisingly similar; most obviously, they both depend on individuals working, as part of a whole, in pursuit of a common goal.
Steve's performances draw their energy from this long lineage of African rhythm and music, which he has integrated into an interactive, percussive, comic yet non-verbal presentation.
This energy is used in both motivational and team building presentations, and also as highly entertaining and theatrical shows.
As a motivator and team builder Steve draws on the energy of the audience making them an integral part of the presentation.
The playing fields are levelled as heads of government and industry, participate alongside shop-floor workers and manual labourers.
Steve integrates the needs and talents of the audience, without compromising them, and they come to realise that they are special as individuals, but are an essential part of something bigger.
Through interaction with Steve as facilitator and conductor, and with each other, they eventually make their own rhythmical contribution, They feel the power of playing together in one pulse and share an amazing experience of harmony and unity.
Steve's facial expressions and body language are his basic communication tools. Whether using tubes, drums, hands, tins, sticks or any other form of percussive instrument, he guides the audience to find their own rhythm. In using non-verbal communication the effect is both personal and collective - the personal experience builds the greater collective experience.
Through humour the participants are able to explore and inevitably discover their hidden rhythmic talents. It is this element that breaks through the inhibitions, the egos and the fears, to release the child within.
Steve is native to South African soil and draws on her rhythms and sounds. This is the cornerstone that brings it together. It is the African rhythms, which ultimately find their way from the fingertips into the heart, making this a most dynamic, interactive and moving experience.
As Steve conducts the audience
- A percussion symphony emerges, with group energy reaching new heights.
- Synergy between the participants evolves.
- The drumming and percussion reach a climax that leaves participants elated.
At the end of this session, certain concepts and metaphors, emerge from the experiential exercise in rhythm and interaction, which are taken away by delegates and can be naturally applied to business and everyday life, these include:
- Communication and focus
- Relationships and cooperation with others
- Transcending social boundaries i.e. accepting and working with cultural diversity
- Working towards common objectives
- Group cohesiveness within an organization
- Using adversity to inspire a team
Participants walk away having been part of a process of a musical group evolution, but with real insight on its practical application within their everyday reality.
"He has an exceptional gift".
Reverend D. Tutu, Archbishop Emeritus, Nobel Peace Laureate
Cricket World Cup Opening Ceremony
Cape Town February 2003
With full audience participation (30 000.people)
"As a veteran of innumerable conferences and seminars at which one of the primary objectives has been to create a common bond between diverse personalities and talents in pursuit of a common goal, I have not participated in an exercise as stimulating as Steve Barnett's."
Rob Renolds, COO, M-TEL
It was such a rousing, ice-breaking and theme-fitting start to the event and great to witness you in action - having heard you explain how your act works. It was quite incredible that you made a room of 850 people do your bidding without a spoken word uttered - a truly magical experience.
Martin Lewis M D, Meetings & Incentive Travel, U K
Steve did one of his wonderful drum events for a group of United Nations people I had in South Africa. Never have I been so impressed by one person, without words, bringing together many people from all walks of life into an incredible, united, happy group.
Caren Banks, Nature Encounters, California.
"One can talk about 'unity', one can intellectualise about it, but all of this conjecture appears as nothing when you experience the real thing. Its transcendent, it sets you free, it reveals our true potential."
Louis Gavin, DDB South Africa.
M&IT awards dinner
Hilton, Hyde Park London, 2002
Fundraiser for save the children fund.
"Within a very short space of time, led by only gestures and mime, the entire hall resounded with the magnificent sound of a percussion concert of syncopated, rhythmical music.....amazing. Steve Barnett left us with a philosophical message ...not unrelated to the essence of successful assisted reproductive technology. Thank you... your country and your lessons will not be forgotten."
Kay Elder Editor, Alpha medical publication. Cambridge U.K.
St James's Place
Royal Albert Hall, London. Jan 2002
Conducted and orchestrated 2500 audience members on percussion sharing the stage with Liza Minelli, The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and John Major.
PIMS & The communication director's forum
English Channel, June 2002
Closing key-note address for 900 people on the Aurora.
Mpumulanga Province, Jan 2000
Exclusive New millennium celebration at the Virgin Group's Ulusaba Game Lodge
Launch of Fedsure. 5-man band with interactive crowd participation throughout.
"That was totally sensational, It was more than spirit-building...it was a spiritual experience. I can recommend you unreservedly to anyone. Thank you for transforming our staff in a day."
Michelle Blummenau, Fedsure Health Marketing.
Northgate Sundome, Johannesburg, July 1998.
Directed 5000 people at the launch. Drums where supplied to the entire audience, including dignitaries, M.P.s and underground workers.
7th All Africa Games
Johannesburg Stadium, Oct 1999
Directed a crowd of 25 000 people with percussion instruments at the opening ceremony.
Don't forget if you are thinking of booking a Speaker for your event we can also help with Awards Presenters, Comedians,after dinner Cabaret, fabulous Party Bands or Tributes, DJs, Close up Magicians, amazing Lookalikes for Meet and Greet, Circus Acts and many different types of Themed Entertainment plus much, much more.