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 Post subject: Hecklers: how to deal with them
PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:21 pm 
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I know every one would like to know some good ways to deal with hecklers. If you have any pointers, post them here. I have a few.

How to Spot a Heckler

A heckler will usually not be quiet. Hecklers are really people who are afraid to surrender their control. A heckler wants to make themselves heard, and hear themselves speak. A heckler will of course challenge you in your routine at one point or another. Like HIV, you can't ever get rid of a heckler, but there are steps you can take to beating one at his own game. Bottom line, to spot a heckler, look for someone who speaks out, try's to turn people's trust and attention away from you, and someone who publicly challenges you. Hecklers are nothing more than insecure people who aren't able to believe what they're seeing. Hecklers are afraid to have people's attention on someone besides themselves.

After You've Spotted a Heckler

Some magicians fall peer pressured to allow a heckler to assist them in a trick, bad mistake. A child who acts out in class doesn't rewarded, he gets punished. A heckler should not be rewarded for being a heckler. Never chose a heckler. There are always so many magic lovers in an audience, they deserve to be chosen.

How to Deal with the Heckler

Hecklers feed on attention, don't give it to them; starve them of it until they are "weak." Never allow the rest of your audience members to give into a heckler. I know that most of you are tempted to do so, but never make yourself look bad trying to expose a heckler. Here's an example. A heckler says,"Show me the other hand!" and you retaliate and say a mean thing to the heckler, not only is the heckler going to continue, but you've also lost your entire audience on an emotional level, and even disgusted a few people, so please do not deal with a heckler that way. You could try being polite with them," Please sir, would you mind the people around you and try to leave the comments to yourself? Thank you." You could even add a little humor in after that. Say something," You don't want me to have get the probe again?" After that, the audience respects you for 1. Speaking about how the show is effected for them, and 2. For nicely, calmly, and politely dealing with the heckler. The heckler might also respect you. It shows him that you are nice, but mean business. It could possibly turn a heckler to your side; he sees that you are bothered by what he's saying, and the the magician is a just a nice guy with a sense of humor.

Extra

Just a little trick I thought of to show a heckler that you really are a magician. If you ever get a chance, slip a duplicate card into a heckler's pocket. Later on, force that same card from an identical deck, make it disappear, and invite your heckler to reach into his pocket, where his "freely" selected card is. This is the only trick you will get a heckler involved with.


Last edited by Bicycle12 on Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:24 pm 
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You didn't write these did you? Iv read them before somewhere.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 30, 2008 3:27 pm 
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ukcop wrote:
You didn't write these did you? Iv read them before somewhere.


I seriously just wrote these off my head and own experiences. I'm offended :evil:


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PostPosted: Thu May 01, 2008 3:44 pm 
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Since I do a comedy act, hecklers are fair game for me. Sometimes I actually look forward to having them...cause I have ways of making the situation humorous.

You don't spot a heckler...a heckler spots you!


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2008 7:17 pm 
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i agree with kyle... if u use a lot of comedy u can use a heckler to ur advantage! joke around with them and try to get them on ur side :D


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PostPosted: Fri May 02, 2008 7:28 pm 
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KyletheGreat wrote:
Since I do a comedy act, hecklers are fair game for me. Sometimes I actually look forward to having them...cause I have ways of making the situation humorous.

You don't spot a heckler...a heckler spots you!


True. If you can get just one idiot who thinks he knows about magic or is just trying to be funny - it's gold.


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 Post subject: Re: Hecklers: how to deal with them
PostPosted: Sat May 03, 2008 8:24 am 
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Bicycle12 wrote:
Just a little trick I thought of to show a heckler that you really are a magician. If you ever get a chance, slip a duplicate card into a heckler's pocket. Later on, force that same card from an identical deck, make it disappear, and invite your heckler to reach into his pocket, where his "freely" selected card is. This is the only trick you will get a heckler involved with.


Attempting to force a card on a known heckler doesn't strike me as a great idea... Sure-fire forces beyond suspicion are a little thin on the ground.


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 Post subject: Re: Hecklers: how to deal with them
PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 3:42 pm 
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Manic_B wrote:
Bicycle12 wrote:
Just a little trick I thought of to show a heckler that you really are a magician. If you ever get a chance, slip a duplicate card into a heckler's pocket. Later on, force that same card from an identical deck, make it disappear, and invite your heckler to reach into his pocket, where his "freely" selected card is. This is the only trick you will get a heckler involved with.


Attempting to force a card on a known heckler doesn't strike me as a great idea... Sure-fire forces beyond suspicion are a little thin on the ground.


There's one force that comes to mind that would be perfect. I don't know the name, but it is sorta like a surefire classic force.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 4:25 pm 
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That's still inviting them to just grab the cards out of your hand.


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PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 4:29 pm 
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Today I was performing during class (we had some free time), and there was a kid sitting by where I was performing that thinks he's super smart and all, and I put a card in the middle (DL), and before I did another DL to show it not on the top he says, "It's on the top." So I simply said, "Look man, this is going to be my job someday; I'm going to make a living doing this, ok? I don't come to McDonald's and knock the mop out of your hands!" Didn't say another word the whole time.

My philosophy on hecklers is to stop them before they get started. Yes, what I said was a little harsh, but it got the job done. I can't stand interruptions during my performances, especially by hecklers. So I "cut 'em off at the knees", so to speak.


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PostPosted: Wed May 14, 2008 5:49 pm 
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I have to disagree with a lot of what you said Bicycle. One, your definition of a heckler is a little off. First you contradict yourself. You said that you can never get rid of a heckler. Later on though, you say you can win a heckler over to your side. Which essentially makes him not a heckler. So it's a contradiction.

Second, a heckler isn't always a heckler on purpose. Sometimes they do it accidentally. There are many cases in which a person will simply blurt out something. It doesn't mean they are purposely trying to heckle you. It could mean that they are confused, or just overly excited. They aren't always insecure people either. It could be that they are just having a bad day and simply doesn't want to see magic. That happens a lot. Sometimes they don't want any attention and simply are annoyed to have a pesky magician in their face. So you don't have a complete definition of a heckler. They are much more complicated than just black and white. There is a lot of gray area.

Many people will have a heckler help in a trick. I've done it many times successfully. It gives them a little attention, and it allows you to have a lot of jokes, as well as possibly amaze them. Most of the time, I've found that the heckler will then be one of the most enthusiastic audience members after I perform a miracle right in front of them.

I've given quite a few hecklers the "bird" or did other offensive gestures. My audience finds it funny, and it will usually set the heckler up again. It works for me because of my audience as well as my style. Gazzo and Jerry Sadowitz, as well as many other people do this quite often. There are many ways to win an audience over.

As for your trick, it usually wouldn't work. How are you going to slip that card into his pocket? Usually if he's a heckler, he's not going to allow you to get close to him. Plus a force isn't such a sure thing. It can fail quite easily.


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PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2008 7:47 pm 
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fallingblood wrote:
I have to disagree with a lot of what you said Bicycle. One, your definition of a heckler is a little off. First you contradict yourself. You said that you can never get rid of a heckler. Later on though, you say you can win a heckler over to your side. Which essentially makes him not a heckler. So it's a contradiction.

Second, a heckler isn't always a heckler on purpose. Sometimes they do it accidentally. There are many cases in which a person will simply blurt out something. It doesn't mean they are purposely trying to heckle you. It could mean that they are confused, or just overly excited. They aren't always insecure people either. It could be that they are just having a bad day and simply doesn't want to see magic. That happens a lot. Sometimes they don't want any attention and simply are annoyed to have a pesky magician in their face. So you don't have a complete definition of a heckler. They are much more complicated than just black and white. There is a lot of gray area.

Many people will have a heckler help in a trick. I've done it many times successfully. It gives them a little attention, and it allows you to have a lot of jokes, as well as possibly amaze them. Most of the time, I've found that the heckler will then be one of the most enthusiastic audience members after I perform a miracle right in front of them.

I've given quite a few hecklers the "bird" or did other offensive gestures. My audience finds it funny, and it will usually set the heckler up again. It works for me because of my audience as well as my style. Gazzo and Jerry Sadowitz, as well as many other people do this quite often. There are many ways to win an audience over.

As for your trick, it usually wouldn't work. How are you going to slip that card into his pocket? Usually if he's a heckler, he's not going to allow you to get close to him. Plus a force isn't such a sure thing. It can fail quite easily.


I see what pretty much every one here is saying, yet some people do not do comedy routines and therefore do not have that advantage. Like it or not, this is an effective way to deal with a heckler. Fallingblood, whether they know they are a heckler or not, they still should be put in their place. If they don't like watching magic (because of a bad day) than they would opt not to watch it. My definition might be a bit off, but hey I'm only 13 and haven't been exposed too greatly to the world of hecklers. It doesn't really matter what a heckler is though, it matters what they do.


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PostPosted: Thu May 15, 2008 8:09 pm 
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It does matter what a heckler is. You can not effectively deal with a heckler if you don't know what they are exactly.

If someone is being a heckler on accident, you shouldn't put them in their place. That will loose your a potential client, one in which could have been just overly excited. It will also turn the crowd against you, as they will see that they weren't trying to be a heckler anyway.

They may opt out of watching magic, but that doesn't mean that some punk teen won't perform anyway. It happens many times. Also, it can happen with professionals if they go to a table and don't see the signs of the person having a bad day.

You're correct though, you haven't been exposed to hecklers much, which really means you shouldn't be writing an essay on the subject. It means that you don't have the experience necessary to write a credible source on the subject. Meaning, you're information isn't something that others should listen to, as you don't have the experience to back it up.


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PostPosted: Fri May 16, 2008 2:10 pm 
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fallingblood wrote:
It does matter what a heckler is. You can not effectively deal with a heckler if you don't know what they are exactly.

If someone is being a heckler on accident, you shouldn't put them in their place. That will loose your a potential client, one in which could have been just overly excited. It will also turn the crowd against you, as they will see that they weren't trying to be a heckler anyway.

They may opt out of watching magic, but that doesn't mean that some punk teen won't perform anyway. It happens many times. Also, it can happen with professionals if they go to a table and don't see the signs of the person having a bad day.

You're correct though, you haven't been exposed to hecklers much, which really means you shouldn't be writing an essay on the subject. It means that you don't have the experience necessary to write a credible source on the subject. Meaning, you're information isn't something that others should listen to, as you don't have the experience to back it up.


Look fallingblood, I'm really starting to hate you. You said for yourself, there is a lot of gray area in what a heckler really is, so how can you say you know what one is; how can anyone. Second, I have been exposed to hecklers, and know how to deal with them. I can obviously tell the difference between an over- excited person and a heckler. Over- excited people don't bother me, infact I love having excited people (although you might not because you sound like that kind of person.) Lastly, not every teen who performs magic is a punk you stereotypical moron! I'd really appreciate that you keep your thoughts to yourself. You're a hippocrit (spelling) now because your being a heckler to me. I thought I would post my views on hecklers, hopefully to help people out. I don't want to be judged because I don't like hecklers.


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PostPosted: Sun May 18, 2008 9:01 am 
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I'm not heckling you. And I never stereotyped you. If you fall into that stereotype, that's your fault. Also, I never said all teens fall into the stereotype. I was talking about certain teens.

It's great you try to give out help; however, if the information you give is incorrect, then it's not help at all. If you can't successfully deal with someone like me on the internet, who isn't even attacking you, how can you possibly deal with people who will try to tear you apart in real life? You said yourself, you really haven't been exposed to hecklers. You're still just learning how to deal with them. Now, somethings may work for you right now; however, you will soon learn that you will have to change your methods. There are many types of hecklers out there, and for each one, you have to know how to deal with them.

The reason I even responded to your post in the first place is to try to help out. Now, I know there will be some people who have the idea that they are correct, no matter what others say. But I've been performing professionally for the last four years, and I have over a decade of experience in magic and entertainment. This means I've learned a lot of information on many different subjects. I'm not saying that I know all, or even that I always have the best advice, but I do try to help out the most that I can. And I also try to help correct incorrect information given by others, in a hope that it will help them, as well as others who will read it.


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