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 Post subject: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 2:29 am 
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Penguin

Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
Hi guys, I've been lurking for a while and finally decided to post, maybe get some feedback and advice. I have been a hobbyist for a while now, familiar with Corinda, Anneman, the basics etc etc etc. Recently I've been feeling like doing a stage show, something I've never done before. Assuming I hear back from the guy doing the booking, it will be at the end of next month. Heres what I'm planning on doing, if anyone wants to offer any advice or tips that'd be great:

Two Part Set. The first part will be along the lines of an introduction to what I do, using a book test, banacheks ring of truth from his dvd, a math effect, and a demonstration with the zener cards. This will all be explained away with NLP, suggestion, body language, etc etc. Then to close the first set I will have someone "randomly" think of a card, and proceed to tell them what card they are thinking of. Then interlude

Coming back from the interlude I explain that unlike the psychic industry I am honest in my dishonesty and am using suggestion to implant ideas, and while they thought the card was a free choice it wasn't. I then will bring out a large poster that was used for advertising the show and point out that the main image of the poster is me pointing to a particular playing card, and this is why they chose the card they did. With that being the set up, I would then move into a performance of E.I

What do you guys think? Is this a good sounding routine for a first show?


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 11:27 am 
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Penguin

Joined: 29 Mar 2011
Posts: 209
Location: Leeds, U.K
I think anything that is entertaining is a good place to start. (this sounds like an obvious statement but is sadly over looked by a lot of performers) If you are performing in a bar and a lot of the spectators are going to be under the influence you need something gripping and not overly educated.

The set sounds fine (I have seen performers get an ovation from predicting one object out of five)don't worry too much about material worry about the presentation, if you are presenting something right even something as small as a 50/50 can be amazing (reference DEZZER B's cheque and Figaro picture).

And finally make sure your prepare....preparation prevents p*ss poor performance!

you have all the ingredients to make a great show get out and do it :)

Pete


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 3:20 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Dec 2005
Posts: 1394
Location: Newmarket, ON, Canada
Sounds fine, but please, just please do not become a Derren clone.

I noticed your statement "honest about my dishonesty" is taken from him.

So please, come up with your own character/style and do not present everything exactly like Derren does or I'll be completely uninterested as to how it went.

Also, have you thought about how to do your openers/closers? The audience needs to know when the end of the show is. Have you thought about music, lighting, being introduced, etc.?

Other than that, good luck.


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 5:18 pm 
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Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
I use one phrase that he uses and that makes me a possible Derren Clone? Sorry I just thought it was a nice phrase. Also, considering the main effect of the show is a Luke Jermay effect, being E.I, wouldn't that make me closer to a Luke Clone? I don't think I'm doing a single Derren Brown effect in the show at all.

Yeah no, I plan on cloning no one, although I may use some of their effects from time to time. Theres really not much new in mentalism, just new presentations I believe.

As far as the venue goes, it will be in a local theater with a decent amount of seating and a medum sized stage with screen and projector, the bar in another part of the building. That was one of the considerations for choosing that location. I have thought of having some theme music and an introduction reel on the projector, but honestly Theres enough work to do with the scripting of the the show that I won't worry about that part just yet until I know for a fact that everything else is taken care of.

The main things that are kind of scaring me at this point is A: How to get the people on stage, and B: what to do with problem spectators as I think with a first show a lot of people will be there with the attitude of "prove it", and want to catch me out. Have any of you guys had that experience, or do people usually play along from the get go?


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:05 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Dec 2005
Posts: 1394
Location: Newmarket, ON, Canada
Don't get defensive, it was just advice.

And in my opinion, if you're worried about getting people on stage and having them "catch you out" (another phrase he used), you're not ready. I re-state, that this is my opinion.

A book called "Maximum Entertainment" will help answer those questions a little.


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:36 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
Oh no, I don't mean to be coming off as defensive at all, rather I am simply trying to understand why my act would be considered to be a cloned act based soley on the choice of phrases I've used on a message forum. That's where the disconnect to me occurs, as I do not believe I am doing anything Mr. Brown has done in his act, at least none that I have seen. Again I point out that the act is based around a Luke Jermay effect, E.I, not any Derren Brown effects... so I honestly don't understand what you mean by "don't be a derren clone" is all. If it's about the language that I am using happens to be language that Mr. Brown uses... well, I'm sure he also says things like "Hello, how are you today". I pick up phrases I find neat from all sorts of sources. I really don't know how to adress this criticism as I find it unfounded.

Moving on though:

Well, as I have said before I have until this point been only a hobbyist, and I have performed for friends, at the pub, out at dinner, at the cafe, and small things like that. Usually doing small presentations where there is nothing really on the line. If it works, cool. If I muck it up, ah well no big deal we'll get back to our pints. I have not performed my act on stage before so I think it's a fair concern that people may want to catch me out. There are always hecklers out there waiting to make a fool of someone. I think with more exposure the credibility of a performer also goes up, but that comes through time and doing shows. As this is my first show I understand that in the eyes of the audience I have absolutely no believablility or credulity until I establish it. That means getting that first spectator on stage could, potentially, be difficult. It's a new avenue for me, I've never dealt with trying to get someone up onto a lit stage in front of 50 to 100 people to have their thoughts read or anything like that. I think once I get through the first 2 or three effects and show I won't embarress anyone, make em cluck like a chicken, or reveal their skeletons in their closet it will be okey, but there is a concern that it will be hard to get someone on stage. Do I think this makes someone unready to perform on stage? No, it just shows that it is someones first time. Do you recall your first time doing a stage show? Did you have the jitters in the weeks leading up to it? Perhaps it's just me, but I find with any performance I do, not just mentalism but music as well (My only real performing experience) I always tend to think about the what could go wrong. Playing music, your speakers may die, you may forget the notes to the bridge, you may break a string, you may get bottles thrown at you whatever. I think it's normal to run through and address these fears before the show.

I guess I can't really defend the notion of being ready for the show until I perform it and knock it out of the park, but I don't think it's a fair statement to say "if you experience any anxiety about the performance before hand, especially your first venture into a stage show, you are unready". I think that's an unrealistic idea. If being ready means never being anxious or nervous about a performance, I am sure to never be ready.

Have you any tips on how to build rapport with the audience in the first few minutes, before asking for someone to come on stage? I'd be more than interested in hearing what more experienced performers have to say on the matter.


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:37 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
Also I meant to ask, who is the author of Maximum Entertainment, and can it be found through Penguin? Thanks :)


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 10:07 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 20 Nov 2004
Posts: 721
CharlesM wrote:
Also I meant to ask, who is the author of Maximum Entertainment, and can it be found through Penguin? Thanks :)


http://www.penguinmagic.com/p/1258


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Mon Aug 08, 2011 10:16 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
Wonderful, thank you :)


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 2:20 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Dec 2005
Posts: 1394
Location: Newmarket, ON, Canada
You don't need to present his effects to become a Derren clone. Derren clones are people who present their material as if they were Derren Brown. All I'm saying is do the work and become your own character, don't steal his ideas, characters, styles, etc. That'd be the way you'd perform better as a mentalist.


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 7:05 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
Ok... I still don't see what in my routine could be considered stolen from Mr. Brown. Ring of Truth is Banacheck, Par Optic Vision is Anneman, E.I is Jermay... But moving along from stupidity here...

Do you have any actual advise on the show as presented here? "Don't be derren brown" Doesn't really address any of the issues or concerns I'm having, such as quickly building rapport with the audience so they don't try to catch me out on effects or just generally be less than pleasant. A mischievous spectator can easily make a mentalist look like a fool. Do you have any actual advice to contribute here, or are you just programmed with "don't be derren" on a loop? Do you have any suggestions as to maybe moving effects around, putting them in a different order. Is there a particular way you have found that works the best for getting that first spectator up on stage when aside from some fliers and radio ads they have no idea who you are and don't quite trust you yet?


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:35 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 10 Dec 2005
Posts: 1394
Location: Newmarket, ON, Canada
CharlesM wrote:
Ok... I still don't see what in my routine could be considered stolen from Mr. Brown. Ring of Truth is Banacheck, Par Optic Vision is Anneman, E.I is Jermay... But moving along from stupidity here...

Do you have any actual advise on the show as presented here? "Don't be derren brown" Doesn't really address any of the issues or concerns I'm having, such as quickly building rapport with the audience so they don't try to catch me out on effects or just generally be less than pleasant. A mischievous spectator can easily make a mentalist look like a fool. Do you have any actual advice to contribute here, or are you just programmed with "don't be derren" on a loop? Do you have any suggestions as to maybe moving effects around, putting them in a different order. Is there a particular way you have found that works the best for getting that first spectator up on stage when aside from some fliers and radio ads they have no idea who you are and don't quite trust you yet?


It was a piece of advice separate from the routine you posted. I never meant my tone to indicate that it was somehow related to your show.

Second, attacking me is not necessarily a good way to get my advice. If you're having troubles already with talking to strangers/showing them effects, then to be honest, you're not ready for a show. I understand coming here is a good idea for advice, etc. but practicing with strangers either on the street, in classrooms or friends you do not know as well is probably a good way to start.

To be honest, lots of people come here wanting to be like Derren Brown so when I see something in someone's post that is related to what he does or says, etc. I get worried. Again, attacking my credibility with asking me "do you have any actual advice to contribute here?" is unnecessary and unwelcome and you won't last at penguin if you keep doing things like that.

No suggestions about moving effects around, as long as you think your opener is strong and your show builds to the biggest point at the conclusion, then it's a good order. But I cannot decide that for you.

Getting the first spectator up, in my experience, is as easy as having them selected. Basically if they're up in front of say 50 or more people, they'll probably just come up if not asked. Now that's important, don't ask them because it gives them a choice. But do be nice in your tone, don't demand they come up, just nicely ask them to join you on stage. As for selecting the person, you can throw out objects, have a piece of paper with a prediction under one person's seat, what have you.

Now in the future, please don't attack my credibility when I'm giving you a piece of advice. Sure it wasn't related to your routine per se, but it was advice to work out characters, effects and styles for yourself instead of what I feared was the possibility of you copying someone else's. Again, not with the effects necessarily, but with the presentation of them, which is 90% of mentalism.

Other than maybe explaining this post, I won't revisit this topic. Welcome to penguin and enjoy your stay.


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:45 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
I was responding to perceived animosity. As you felt I was attacking your credibility so too I felt you were attacking mine. I'm willing to chalk that up to a mis-communication as it appears thats what it was.

I have done street work, cafe work, and small scale presentations of the like and getting volunteers in that way is generally easy. I find that if I take the time to sit down with the folks, chat, perhaps share a glass of wine, and open up to them I can successfully build rapport, but this is over time. Not having done a stage show before a concern of mine was/is not having the length of time to do that and having to have it occur instantly. I think you're idea of not asking them sounds perfect actually. If I ask them there is a chance of saying no, however if I just tell them to come up and present myself as having no question about them coming up I can see how it would be hard for the spectator not to. Just as they won't want to be embarressed by coming up and clucking like a chicken, perhaps they'll also be just as afraid of being embarressed by not coming to stage. Good idea here, thanks.

I do feel bad though, because apparently I have said something to offend you or upset you, which is regrettable because I am honestly looking for advice from more experienced performers and I generally do not like putting people off. I know you said you wouldn't be checking this thread in the future, and I respect that, but I'd like to also say that if I've upset you in any way please feel free to PM me. Sometimes the written medium is not the best, and I think this thread has demonstrated that.

Thank you for your time and responses so far though

-Charles-


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:57 pm 
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Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 444
Location: Every where you want to be
I'm not sure which "math effect" you will do, I don't do them because most people hate math.

I know I was bored in math class.

If they will be drinking, and they are doing the math...they will screw it up.

Just my opinion...like I said I don't know which one you are doing :)


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 Post subject: Re: First Post, First Show
PostPosted: Tue Aug 09, 2011 11:18 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 19 Jul 2011
Posts: 12
I believe it comes from Osterlind, "Number Reversal" though I'll have to break out my DVDs to be sure. That is a good point though about if they're drinking... I thought maybe of just giving them a calculator, but thats not ideal. Of all the effects though, that is the one I am most comfortable removing. In fact in the last couple of days I've been doing some work moving around and adding/removing effects from the show list while I wait to hear back from the booking folks for the venue as they're slow as molasses to respond... but that's neither here nor there. But with the idea of the Number Reversal effect requiring too much thinking on the spectators part, this is what I'm looking at now:

Opener - Ring of Truth from Banachek
Par Optic Vision
Drawing Duplication utilizing a peek
Card Prediction
Set Two -
Three Phase E.I Routine

Which I think I like a lot better, because it removes the chance of the spectator mucking up the math. I like the idea of using Ring of Truth as the opener, because I am scripting it to start with asking the audience how many of them have seen the Show Lie to me, talk a little about Dr. Ekman (who Dr. Lightman was based upon) and then doing a demonstration of reading body language and facial clues to determine who the liar is, etc etc, and then jumping into Par Optic vision. Using a blindfold for par-optic vision I think removes the idea from the spectator that I'm soley using body language and such skills.

Heres something I wanted to talk a little bit about though. I find it's important to me to give my audience a false reasoning or method to why an effect works. I have no intention of being the next Uri Geller. I do not harbor any thoughts of being psychic, but I do think it's important to give folks an explanation of some sort. This is where I was thinking of throwing in Muscle Reading as the method. When performing Par-Optic-Vision maybe have them place their hand in mine or something, and then as I kind of mutter through cards I'll feel a response and know which card they chose.

The drawing duplication will be a demonstration of cold reading, thus tying it in with E.I later in the set, and the duplication itself can be explained away by using generalities.

The card prediction I am thinking of taking out, as if for some reason my force doesn't work, I'm looking like a fool.

Basically I don't mind the audience leaving the show believing that I have some sort of psychic power, I just want to be careful to not say that myself and rather give them some sort of reasonable false reasoning, because I believe that enhances the effect. Rather than just saying You are thinking of _____, I want to be able to say "you are thinking of ____ and heres why". And since shows like Lie to Me are so popular right now, I am intrigued with using that as a basis. Perhaps even have a wall of expressions behind me, similar to what Dr. Lightman has in his hallway to his office, if anyone has seen the show.


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