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 Post subject: Max tips #1: Justification is everything.
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 1:57 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 21 Feb 2007
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Location: Your mind
I wanted to share with you some of my outlines I used when creating/ building a routine, with whatever methods. I can't tell you how much of those posts I will make, but certainly a couple of them will mystically appear in the next month.

Hope you enjoy,
Max.

Justification is everything

Mentalists usually have fear of using any kind of props that are visible to the audience, prop free mentalism for sure is a thing I love to have closely keept in my skull for everyday use. However you can't believe how much you could do with objects lying around.

Props doesn't hurt you, however I like to have my own ettiquette for using them, because much of the time people misuse their props and doesn't justify their uses, thus making the audience suspicious about that very prop.

Also a rule of the thumb, keep your routines as simple as possible for your audiences, I hate having to force numbers with deck of cards, a gaffed book, add a number pads etc. In my mind why would you need to have someone select a number instead of merely thinking of it, since you said that the process of knowing that number is only having them to think about it, so wouldn't it seems fairer that way?

The goal of this ''essay'' (I post it there because if I post something about mentalism in essays no one looks at it), is to make you able to use those props skillfully to make them believe that the force was part of the process, that it was INTENDED to make it fairer, and less possible.

What you should consider is a prop or not

Lot's of mentalists thinks that the following are props:

Trust me;
- Enveloppes
- Bags
- Slips of paper
- Notepads
- Rolled up ball of paper
- A canvas (large thick sheet of paper)
- A blindfold
- A pencil
- A clipboard
- Index cards

Are all normal objects to me, what a props is, it's an unusual object which the audience migth be wondering about it's use, such as a mystical medium glass orb, an antique looking box etc.

Don't think everything is props in your acts, you can have a lot more freedom for using them, as well as keeping your nerves down before the show.

I think we should differentiate those two groups:
- Propless mentalism:
Mentalism that can use the above list, effects that you can do by carrying any small objects, or you can do anywhere with little or no preparation. Also effects using absolutely no visible props to the audience while secretly using one EX: TT.

- Naked mentalism:
Mentalism that can be done without any preparation, or visible/ invisible props, without having to borrow anything from your spectators.

Your persona and your props

Your props should follow the outline you gave yourself for your effects, some people called it stage presents, some called them persona, however they are the same.

If you are some sort of mystical performer, then you should use props which seems mystical to your audiences, such as pendulums, spirit cabinets etc.

While if you are a more psychologically oriented performer, you migth prefer to use clipboards, ruled notepads, Ink pencils etc.

If your audience can build upon a logical link between yourself and your props you are already a step ahead.

The justification

This is the part that is most important in this essay, the justification of using a prop.

:arrow: What is a good justification for using a prop?
Anything that make's sense with that routine, let's say we have a problem here, we want to be able to reveal four randomly selected numbers using a force bag, however since your routine deals with visualisation processes and whatever presentation you wish to use, you need to find a reason for using the force bag.

Revealing a pin number: Someone PIN number is very personal, and it should be something that only this person know as long as I am concerned, so it would be highely impolite to reveal someone PIN on stage. So you need to make this person think about another number, you have to tell them that you don't want to influence their choices so it's better to have a fair (appently free choice) than one that migth be influenced, OR you could tell that you don't want to be able to get a glimpse of what he/she migth write on a piece of paper, so it's better to have one already written, and also it make's it faster.

Make them buy

A bit ago I brought a book called '' How to control anyone to do anything '', this book was filled with nice ideas that you could apply in your mentalism routine, however I don't think the book is traducted in english, I migth be mistaken.

However it's told that if you can make someone think about an universally accepted belief, and then link with it something that is false or mistaken, they will link that normally suspicious belief with one that is universally accepted.

EX:
1- If you toss a coin you have 1/2 that it will fall on either sides
2- An object that has an end or a side that weigths more than the other is more likely to hit the ground first if you toss it.
3- The side of the coin with the less ''cavings'' is most likely to fall face down on the ground.

The statement #3 is false, but since they never made that experiment #3 you exploit their ignorance, and since you made a logical link with the object #2 they are more likely to believe you.

So let's take our bag concept once more, let's say earlier you used influence as a part of your presentation:

1- I can influence your thougths, and make you think of something of MY choice.
2- The bag contains all different slips of paper which can't be influenced to sellect since the bag is mixed with different slips.
3- It's more fair to have you pick something from that bag than merely thinking about a number.

So what could be stronger than having someone actually think of something, well you guess it now.

Hope you like this devilish application!


Is that make sense?

Sometimes you exploit someone ignorance too much and your audience thinks you are taking them as dummies. Thing's that doesn't make sense to me is saying what someone grandfather name is by looking at body movements.

There is an end to your spectator ignorance, that way I prefer to use the method above combined with more justification, per example:

You have a two way page force gaffed book, ( which is just like a deck of cards with all the same two cards repeated over and over again, but now with page numbers.) And you want to use it to force a page for two spectators, you need a logical reason for using a third book.

You could have both spectators with the same book, however to make sure both doesn't end on the same page (which is what you don't want actually with a force book) You use that book to make it fair, and you can then let the other participant peek the other participant page number to confirm it's not the same page.

Also you could tell them that you don't want to touch THEIR book for the page selection.

The end
I migth keep on working the same subject for the second installement of Max tips.

Hope you liked it, feedback would be greatly appreciated!
Max.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 3:25 pm 
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Thanks for the Post Max. I will definitely be coming back to this from time to time.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 3:27 pm 
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Wow really helpfull tips in there Max!

I like the ideas of using common sense facts and then lulling them into the faulse sense of security so that you can now say somthign wich seems like fact, because what you have said before is sound.

I also like the concept you summed up with using the change bag.

Alot of good info in there!

Thanks for sharing, Max. Lookign foward to more of these.

Paul.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 4:38 pm 
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Nice work Max!!!

Floyd


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Fri Jun 13, 2008 9:39 pm 
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Thanks Max,
I enjoyed reading it... especially the 'make them buy' section.
Brad


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2008 2:47 am 
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MATE!
There was some really helpful stuff in there. I can't wait for 'Max Tips #2'!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2008 8:51 am 
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I can imagine a sticky in the near future, congrats!


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2008 12:58 pm 
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Great great advice here. Max, thank you so much for sharing your knowledge with us.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2008 1:12 pm 
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Glad you liked them!

If you have questions you can send it in a PM and maybe #2 will just be a post awnsering some questions, I'll be honest and only reply to those I can!

Max.


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 Post subject: Re: Max tips #1: Justification is everything.
PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2008 1:52 pm 
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Joined: 19 May 2003
Posts: 343
Location: Milky Way, Earth, United States of America, Arkansas
Bliztmagic wrote:
What you should consider is a prop or not

Lot's of mentalists thinks that the following are props:

Trust me;
- Envelopes
- Bags
- Slips of paper
- Notepads
- Rolled up ball of paper
- A canvas (large thick sheet of paper)
- A blindfold
- A pencil
- A clipboard
- Index cards

Are all normal objects to me, what a props is, it's an unusual object which the audience might be wondering about it's use, such as a mystical medium glass orb, an antique looking box etc.

Don't think everything is props in your acts, you can have a lot more freedom for using them, as well as keeping your nerves down before the show.

I think we should differentiate those two groups:
- Propless mentalism:
Mentalism that can use the above list, effects that you can do by carrying any small objects, or you can do anywhere with little or no preparation. Also effects using absolutely no visible props to the audience while secretly using one EX: TT.

- Naked mentalism:
Mentalism that can be done without any preparation, or visible/ invisible props, without having to borrow anything from your spectators.


I think "impromptu prop" is more name-worthy. Things that are props (because you need them to perform), yet impromptu because you can pretty much find them anywhere if you don't have them.

So maybe Impromptu Mentalism (no props whatsoever), and Impromptu Prop Mentalism (easily accessible props). They may not be "props" to a spectator, but they are props to a magician.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sat Jun 14, 2008 2:09 pm 
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I think what Max is saying is that if you think of them as "props", your audience will think of them as props as well, and to audiences that carries a negative connotation. Audiences think of props, for magicians at least, as something suspicious or some kind of trick device with trapdoors and mirrors.

The less attention you pay to these normal items, combined with your justification for props, will leave the audience with no explanation other than real magic or real mind reading.

-JT


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 11:45 am 
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Do you use the number thing as a justification for pre-show work?


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 16, 2008 11:49 am 
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Chickenz wrote:
Do you use the number thing as a justification for pre-show work?


No because the double reality wouldn't work on stage with that idea, however if you wish to use it rigth on stage it will work.

Max.


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