View Cart | View Account | Help
Order by phone: 800-880-2592
Check out our favorite NEW ARRIVALS
Need it fast? Order before 4pm Eastern and your order ships SAME DAY.

All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 23 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next
Author Message
 Post subject: idk
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 9:52 pm 
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 31 Aug 2006
Posts: 68
i dont know what kind of restrant to go to for a job, and how i ask if they need a magical preformer


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: idk
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 10:01 pm 
User avatar
Offline
Moderator

Joined: 24 Jan 2003
Posts: 4110
Location: Milford OH
smurray0817 wrote:
i dont know what kind of restrant to go to for a job, and how i ask if they need a magical preformer


Preferably go to one that serves food. Ask in English if you're in the U.S.A. or in the language of the country you live in.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 10:31 pm 
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 11 Oct 2007
Posts: 20
First you need to be prepared - routines, informations concerning job, times, etc. and you must be serious about it (i.e. proffesional) Make sure you're ready to work in restaurants.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Nov 21, 2007 2:57 am 
User avatar
Offline
born to perform.

Joined: 20 Apr 2004
Posts: 2592
Location: Herts, England
not still in 8th grade.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: idk
PostPosted: Wed Nov 21, 2007 3:46 am 
User avatar
Offline
born to perform.

Joined: 27 Sep 2006
Posts: 3120
Location: Everywhere, but no where
smurray0817 wrote:
i dont know what kind of restrant to go to for a job, and how i ask if they need a magical preformer


One where people eat while seated in chairs, and with words.

2 Books to look into:
Restaurant Performer's Handbook: Jim Pace
Making a Living Entertaining in Restaurants: Ruth Schooner and Peter Lansing (some help provided by Jynx and Fluffy - the cats)

Incidently, you should probably be able to spell "restaurant" before you work in one.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:17 am 
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 24 Mar 2007
Posts: 31
Location: Texas
Quote:
Incidently, you should probably be able to spell "restaurant" before you work in one.

Leave him alone on this one. For the life of me, I still cant spell that word right without the help of my Palm Pilot.

Seriously, sometims I am surprised at the lack of help on these forums. (Eyes drift towards paddy and dbaker) The guy is looking for some help, and all you give him is smart *** one-liners. Honestly, if this is how you treat customers, I would hate to end up at a restaurant that you work for.[/quote]


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 7:59 am 
User avatar
Offline
Moderator

Joined: 24 Jan 2003
Posts: 4110
Location: Milford OH
raiderdlove wrote:
Quote:
Incidently, you should probably be able to spell "restaurant" before you work in one.

Leave him alone on this one. For the life of me, I still cant spell that word right without the help of my Palm Pilot.

Seriously, sometims I am surprised at the lack of help on these forums. (Eyes drift towards paddy and dbaker) The guy is looking for some help, and all you give him is smart *** one-liners. Honestly, if this is how you treat customers, I would hate to end up at a restaurant that you work for.
[/quote]

No, this guy thinks playing with gimmicks is an easy way to earn money! "Hey I'll learn magic and then be a magician like Blaine."

Restaurant work is HARD, yes I am on for only 3 hours a night, but no one sees the amount of money or time I spend learning new effects to constantly update my routine. Plus the time for the business aspect of magic. A stage or parlour, or even a busker can get by with 3 to 5 effects that are done perfectly, a restaurant worker needs to continually change his act because of repeat customers.

I have, and continue to do so, helped people that were interested in ENTERTAINING as a way of earning money. But some kid, who is too lazy to use spell check, pops up with "I am ready to do tricks for money" posts I will be blunt. He is too lazy to give us a good impression of himself so it follows that he is too lazy to be any good as an entertainer.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:24 am 
User avatar
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 10 Mar 2008
Posts: 261
You do know there are like a thousand identical topics on this exact subject, with the same lack of care for spelling?

I'm starting to see what you guys mean by telling people to use the search button..


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject: Re: idk
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 8:45 am 
User avatar
Offline
born to perform.

Joined: 17 Jul 2003
Posts: 2941
Location: Greensburg PA Ring 158
paddy wrote:
smurray0817 wrote:
i dont know what kind of restrant to go to for a job, and how i ask if they need a magical preformer


Preferably go to one that serves food. Ask in English if you're in the U.S.A. or in the language of the country you live in.


Too funny!

Also Raider, Dbarker actually recommended a few books that would be helpful. Consider this (and I am about helping others): I spend $30 on Jim Paces book. Then I read all the information (8 hours) learn some of the routines (40 - 100 hours depending on what I take out of the book) and go out and get the job. Then I am asked for the same information that took me weeks to gleen from and spent my own money on. I think a lot of you would be surprised to see who wrote the book Making a Living Entertaining in Restaurants: Ruth Schooner and Peter Lansing!

I am all for advice giving and sharing but there has to be some kind of a foundation. Proper english and reading a book on the subject would give a person that foundation. Then they could come back and ask questions like "How does everyone feel about tips, as I feel I am uncomfortable taking/asking for them?" Which would no doubt prompt an argument, but that is not bad either as you would see both sides of the issue!


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 5:54 pm 
Offline
born to perform.

Joined: 08 Jan 2007
Posts: 665
Location: A box next to wal-mart
live at the jailhouse for starters, secound it talks about what type of restaurants are out there. What you have to think about is what do you like to do, meaning you like to perform on streets/birdays/ect. then work from there.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:04 pm 
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 14 Jan 2007
Posts: 303
Location: Practicing in Fairfield, CT
Sorry for the long post, not written by me but it explains a lot. It gets a bit tedious but stick it out.


.: Getting the Job :.





There are many sources out there that go into detail about choosing a restaurant to approach. Some suggest you should eat there first and possibly write a letter to the manager, but ultimately getting a restaurant gig seems like so much else in life: a numbers game. There are some guide lines to make your time more productive, but ultimately you are going to have to go out and talk to restaurant managers about their needs.

One thing I found is that some restaurants are more willing to hire a magician than others. Chain restaurants (e.g. franchises) are usually more difficult than those that are individually owned. Also places that already have some sort of entertainment are more likely to hire a magician, so look for places that have live music on the weekends, or seem to cater to fun-loving crowds.

I would recommend making a list of potential places near your home where you might be able to secure a job and then systematically approaching those restaurants. This way you are less likely to get discouraged when you get a few no’s, and trust me you probably will.

You should approach the restaurant manager when things in a restaurant are slowest. You should be wearing appropriate attire, and grooming should be of a high standard. In short, you should look professional. These small details count.

Introduce yourself to the host and ask if the manager is in, mentioning that you do not have an appointment. When the manager comes out, shake hands, introduce yourself and tell them that you would like to take 8 minutes of their time to show him how to increase hospitality, customer satisfaction, and floor traffic. This lets them know that you are not planning on being there all day and that what you have to say will be profitable for the business. If you say 10 minutes rather than 8 minutes it seems less precise and they will probably assume that by 10 minutes you really mean half an hour. When you say 8 minutes it comes across like a person who knows exactly what they is doing and has it down to the minute. Of course this then means you need to make sure that your presentation is about 8 minutes or thereabouts.

You then explain that you are a strolling magician and describe to him all the ways that such entertainment can benefit his establishment. Some ideas:
.:Cover a delay in the kitchen
.:Entertain guests while they wait to be seated on busy nights
.:Keep guests entertained between the time when they order and when their food arrives
.:Develop word of mouth advertising as people begin talking about the magic

.:Generate repeat customers as people come back, usually with friends, to share the magical experience
.:Generate new business as you describe all the marketing YOU will do to bring people into the restaurant
.:Increase customer satisfaction as their stay is more entertaining and fun
.:Get current guests to return on slower nights when they see the lobby board or table tents describing the entertainment on the night you work.

Notice that you do NOT show them a magic trick. Don’t even pull out a deck of cards or any props. You may think that you can help sell your program by demonstrating your magic but you must recognize that the manager is not going to hire a “magic show”. If they hire at all, it will be because they are buying bottom line benefits to there business. They want increase revenue and will only hire you to the extent that they believe you will provide them.



I would then ask if they agree that those benefits would help there bottom line. Hopefully they say yes (If they do say no, thank them and leave as you will never convince them, so don’t waste your time or theirs). Then you ask if it would be possible for you to return on (whatever day you want to work) for a free trial night of entertainment. Stress that there is no risk, no commitment, and absolutely no charge for this night of entertainment, just a chance for you to demonstrate what you can provide for this restaurant. Rarely will you get a no at this point. If they ask to see a trick tell them that you would rather come in and show them how the patrons react to the magic. Push for the trial night of entertainment.

At this point you may get an inquiry as to the price you charge. Try and put them off, saying something like, “Let me work for free and then we can try and determine the value of my services”. If they insist say something like “I regularly charge $300 per hour for my strolling, in this situation I would be willing to drastically cut my rates because first of all, it would be a regular engagement rather than a one-time deal, and secondly because I think it would be fun to work here. Your guests ( I’ve learnt to always call them guests, never customers, it shows you are up on restaurant lingo) are the same demographic that I cater to and I think it will be a mutually beneficial relationship. I would not expect to get paid any more than $100 per night, but again, we can discuss this later if you want.” By saying “not any more than $100 per night” you leave the obvious implication of flexibility. Maybe you’ll take $75, maybe $50 with a meal, but maybe a night is only two hours, maybe it is four.

On the night of your performance you should make sure everything is ready to go, your attire is clean and pressed and you have all the necessary equipment. Arrive early and introduce yourself to the management and other staff. Perform your best magic and, on this night anyway, refuse all tips. Instead, strongly encourage every person who wants to tip you to speak to a manager instead. I just tell them that the best tip they can give me is to tell the manager how much they enjoyed the entertainment. Your goal is to keep the managers flooded with complements about YOU and the quality of your work. You may also want to take the tip and pass it along to the waiter or waitress who was working that table. Tell him or her that you always split tips with the staff (even though you gave her the whole tip). Tell them this is your trial night and that they should tell the manager how much the table liked you.

When you leave, let the manager know that you are going and that you will be calling to discuss where they want to go from here. The next step is going back in and negotiating your fee. I try to always get at least $100 for 3 hours of work. If they contend that’s too much or they only need 2 hours then I would adjust some.




.: Keeping the Job :.



The secret to keeping your job as a restaurant magician is to understand the needs of your employer. They want their guests to have a great time, but if it isn’t profitable to keep you on the pay roll then your position is tentative at best. Not to fear. All you have to do is make sure that they are fully aware how much business you generate. This of course, means that you either need to generate lots of business or at least let them know you are trying.

Talk to each table that comes in. Tell them about what nights you are there and have them talk to the manager in lieu or in addition to tipping you. This increases the likelihood that when they return it will be on a night when you are working. When they tell the manager how much they liked your show it is instant feedback that will keep you in good with the management. Remember, in all reality, you are the least vital person in the restaurant and yet probably the highest paid. It is very important that you are constantly validating your cost to the company.

While it is important to be seen encouraging guests to return, you should also be marketing the restaurant outside. You should have a mailing list and/or email list of all your past clients, agents, friends, and family members. I think you should try to send out a note of this sort once or twice a year.
Another great way to get people into the restaurant on the nights you work is to invite potential clients to come see you perform. This is really win-win because the restaurant gets more guests, the client has a chance to “try” before they “buy” and you win because once they see you they will surely hire you to work for them!

You also want to keep the wait staff happy if you intend to work there very long. If you upset them they can make your life miserable and your career there short. You don’t have to kiss up to them, but remember that they make their money through tips. Many waiters feel that your tip might have come from what the guests were going to tip them. Thus the money you make in tips they feel almost came from their pockets.




.: Promoting Yourself on the Job :.



If your good enough you will be frequently asked for a card. As long as you carry some with you, you should have no problem getting referrals from your restaurant work. Just make sure the restaurant you are working caters to the people you want to perform for. Also ask the management if they mind that you’re handing out a personalized business card. If they disagree offer to have their business name noted somewhere on the card.




.: Tips :.



I’ll give you both sides of the argument and you can make your own decision.
ACCEPT TIPS - Tips increase the amount of money you take home each night. Tips are generally cash money, which is always nice. Besides, it’s an ego boost to have people tip you. It implies that your magic was above expectation. Accepting tips can actually double the amount of money you make on a given night.
DON’T ACCEPT TIPS - I already wrote about how accepting tips may upset the wait staff, but probably the most succinct argument against taking tips that I have ever heard is that it demeans you in the eyes of the audience.
By accepting, and worse, encouraging tips, many magicians bring the art of magic to the level of a street hustler. I know a magician who works for tips only. This is great if your objective is to earn a few extra dollars and get in some practice time in front of a live audience. But even the exposure is of limited value.

My policy, which i got from another magician, is to deny the tip twice but accept it on the third offer, just because I figure that they really want to say thank you in a way that means something to them. When they first offer a tip during my restaurant strolling I tell them “Thank you very much, but tipping is not necessary. My services are provided by the restaurant management as a gift to you.” If they offer again, I state “Really, I am paid very well for my services. Feel free to leave that with your server and tell her why you are leaving it. In fact, the very best way to tip me is to tell a manager how much you enjoyed my performance. Managers usually only hear from guests if there is a problem and you would be amazed how far your kind comments go with them on my behalf.” If they still insist I take the money, thank them again, and then tell them that I still expect them to compliment me to management as I point out a manager or the manager’s office. I figure that if they want to thank me that much, then they will be happy to speak to a manager if they realize how important that is to me.




.: Approaching Tables :.



I approach a table, smile, and say “ Hi. My name is Michael Sheridan. I’m part of the entertainment tonight: a magician. Would you like to see some magic, compliments of the management?” Of they say no “Okay. Thank you very much, and I hope you all have an excellent time here tonight. If you change your mind feel free to have your server let me know and I will be glad to come back.” Then I walk away and approach another table. If they don’t want to see magic, then I simply honor that wish and move on. People go out to eat for all sorts of reasons. Sometimes people don’t want to be disturbed. Sometimes people simply don’t like magic, no matter what. Don’t feel compelled to show these people the error of their ways.




.: Dealing with Tough Guests :.



It is not uncommon to approach a table and get into a routine and discover that one or more of the guests have either had too much to drink, or for some other reason are giving you a particularly difficult time. How do you handle such situations?

Finish the effect you are on, thank them for their time, invite them to come back and see you again, and then walk away with a smile on your face. That’s the great thing about strolling. Please note that I’m not recommending that you storm off or walk away in mid routine. You should never “teach them a lesson” nor should you be leaving in order to punish them. You simply smile, thank them sincerely, and move on. If your attitude is good then you can walk away and they will have no idea that you performed at their table for a much shorter time period than at anyone else’s.




.: What to Perform :.



Whatever you perform needs to fit into your pockets. It’s also good to have things that reset with a minimum of fuss. Personally, I prefer effects that either don’t use gaffed items, or at the very least the effects begin and end clean ( Thank you for the exchange Mr Goring). This way if a spectator asks to examine something (and they will) I have no problem. So that’s what NOT to perform. I honestly mostly use cards although as great and important as cards are, and contrary to what many magicians will try and tell you, a deck of cards is NOT a complete strolling act, though it could be in a pinch. Every strolling magician should carry sponge balls because these are perfect for both kids and adults. Rubber bands pack small, play big, and can be handed out after the effect is done. People love money and if you are working for tips it is a common practice to perform a money trick as your closing effect in order to get the money on the table.




Thanks for those that have read this far. Remember that these are only my opinions and im sure there are lots of things I missed touching on but feel free to add any info at all.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:04 pm 
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 14 Jan 2007
Posts: 303
Location: Practicing in Fairfield, CT
Also if anybody knows who originally wrote this essay, please tell me as I would like to give credit where it is very due.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:25 pm 
User avatar
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 13 Jul 2006
Posts: 107
raiderdlove wrote:
Quote:
Incidently, you should probably be able to spell "restaurant" before you work in one.

Leave him alone on this one. For the life of me, I still cant spell that word right without the help of my Palm Pilot.

Seriously, sometims I am surprised at the lack of help on these forums. (Eyes drift towards paddy and dbaker) The guy is looking for some help, and all you give him is smart *** one-liners. Honestly, if this is how you treat customers, I would hate to end up at a restaurant that you work for.
[/quote]

Amen. To much bashing! In all the other forums I go to I've never heard someone get Yelled at from spelling errors like here. I still Love the advice given though.


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Apr 22, 2008 6:38 pm 
User avatar
Offline
Emperor Penguin

Joined: 24 Jun 2006
Posts: 6622
Location: Penguin's Most Feared Intellect
There isn't much bashing. But when someone is too lazy to look for any information themselves, then why should we waste our times trying to help them when it's only to obvious that they will fail from a poor work ethic?


Top
 Profile  
 
 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Apr 23, 2008 6:29 am 
Offline
Penguin

Joined: 24 Mar 2007
Posts: 31
Location: Texas
fallingblood, I agree with you. People should do searches before they make repeated posts. But, what is the point in bashing them? All you are doing is taking an aspiring artist and discouraging him. If we treated all beginers this way, the art would completely die eventually. No one would want to be a part of it.

All I'm saying is that people could make posts that say "Do a search on 'getting a gig' " or something like that. Nice, clear, to the point, and you didn't hurt anyone's feelings. All the flaming, bashing, trolling, and excessive sarcasm are not nessesary.


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 23 posts ]  Go to page 1, 2  Next

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 0 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB © 2009 Penguin Magic, Inc.