Here are some of my suggestions. (K.I.S.S) Keep It Short & Simple! Kids have short attention spans. Also don't just walk up to a table and ask... WANT TO SEE A MAGIC TRICK? Start off with a question that can't be answered with a Yes or No answer. I usally use... " HEY FOLKS! How we doing tonight?" Also there are two times during the meal I look for to approch the table at. #1 Right after the order has be placed with the waiter/waitress.... That will give you pleanty of time to entertain while they are waiting for their dinner to be servered. And at times you can time it out so you wrap up your "ACT or Routeen" just as the food comes to the table! Or #2 Right as the KIDS are finished eating. Most kids are finished eating in about 15 to 20 mins after they get their food. Some times I'll tell the parents. "Well I'll tell you what I'll do. I'll check back with you when you are finnished or just let your waiter / waiteress know when your ready and I'll be back. Also one thing that is a great "ICE BREAKER" for kids is STICKERS
Kids love Skickers! I get some from my balloon company. Kids eat it up!
Then when I do my magic I do stuff like the "French drop" vanish to pull the coin out of the kids ear. I know it's corny but it works. I also use the 3D sponge Rabbits. Or the "Vanishing Red Hanky" and make it appear from many different places... Napkin off the table, Out of thin air, from a hat some one is wareing... Use your creative juices to see where you can pull it out of. I've even done the MOUTH COILS routeen and pulled the coils out of my mouth. The coils are rainbow color! It just blows their mind that the "PAPER RAINBOW" isn't wet! I even use the "Professer's Nightmare as a table hopping trick! It is something that the kids can handle, tug on and I just set the trick right in front of them... They don't know any better!!! All of these can be done un under 2 mins. and they have color and flash. Also this is very important.... MAKE SURE YOU TALK TO THE KIDS NOT AT THE KIDS! Listen to what they say.
And Never admitt that they have guessed how you've done a magic trick. Unless you have messed it up so bad it is ovious that you have. Then just drop the trick and go on to the next one. And when ever some one tells me how I did a trick... no matter if they are right or wrong... I always stop , listen and say. " You Know It can be done that way.... But I didn't do it that way." That stops them from trying to explain the trick again! Remember Kids are people too! I always treat them that way. I have parents all the time tell me, " WE JUST HAD TO COME HERE TONIGHT BECAUSE THE KIDS WANTED TO SEE YOU AGAIN!" I tell them.... Make sure you tell the manager that for me, OK? Also I teach all my "KIDS" who come to see me, what the two (2) most magical words in the world are..... "PLEASE & THANK YOU
I remind them that a lot of thing happen when you say those two words. I also get a big smile and a nod of the head from the parents too!
Sorry I was so long... I've been twisting balloons & doing magic in resturants for over 10 years now. (WOW THAT LONG?) These are just a few things I have learned while being in the trenches.
Keeping the Magic Alive