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 Post subject: Hey guys need some help on where to start
PostPosted: Sat Sep 22, 2012 12:31 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 22 Jan 2006
Posts: 306
I have been out of the scene for a few years. Recently I decided to get back into magic with the encouragement of my current girlfriend. I am going over my old material practicing getting back the old moves. I am aiming to do shows for extra money but do not know where to start. I wish to start doing shows at wedding, business events, ect. Should I just go out one day and start performing on the street trying to get an audience?

My current magic collection includes the following:

In the beginning there were coins

Ice Coins(I lost the gimmicks though.. Was hoping someone could help me find them as they arent on penguin.)

Paralies by Joshua Quinn

Spun by Morgan Strebler

Extreme Burn

Live At The Jail House

Front row Sankey

Anytime Anywhere by Jay Sankey

Show Off with Cards

Water to beer

Self Tying Shoelace.

What would you guys recommend for a venue such as a wedding or a business party? And any other advice anyone has for me. Thanks in advanced =]


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 Post subject: Re: Hey guys need some help on where to start
PostPosted: Sun Sep 23, 2012 4:13 am 
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Moderator

Joined: 24 Jan 2003
Posts: 4110
Location: Milford OH
First you have to reeducate yourself. The show is not about "tricks" it is about entertaining an audience. When you have an entertaining act then consider doing gigs. Yea you can start by busking but the crowds are brutal. If you don't entertain they will just destroy you. It's a lot different than weddings or business meetings. But the key is Keep it shourt, keep it simple, keep it ENTERTAINING.


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 Post subject: Re: Hey guys need some help on where to start
PostPosted: Wed Sep 26, 2012 1:26 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 27 Mar 2004
Posts: 843
Location: Ohio U.S.A.
Paddy is right. It's the entertainment value that's important. I wouldn't just start doing magic out in public....especially without a proper routine or licenses.

I would suggest that you work up a 20-30 minute routine, and offer to perform it for free to some of the local nursing homes in your area. It will get you in front of an audience, and will at the same time provide you with a bit of a challenge. Many seniors will be able to follow and enjoy your effects, while others may not. But this will give you a feel of real performance conditions along with real performing experience. You could also notify the local TV and newspaper about your performance. Many times they will be happy to come out and cover the event, thus letting people in your area know who you are and what you have to offer.


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 Post subject: Re: Hey guys need some help on where to start
PostPosted: Thu Oct 04, 2012 3:34 am 
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Penguin

Joined: 23 Feb 2012
Posts: 82
I would like to play the role of Devil's Advocate.

I suggest that you perform anywhere and everywhere possible - even if your act is horrible. An act or routine is only as good as an audience says it is. The audience is the final word, because a show can't even exist without someone there to experience it - the word of the audience is law in entertainment. With that knowledge, I maintain that it is best to practice a show or routine until the sleight of hand is passable, then to promptly present it to a lay audience. For the performer himself to continue adapting the act without audience input at this point would be futile, for he may well end up making supposed improvements, only to realize that he is creating weaknesses in the eyes of the audience. More succinctly, let the audience be the director. The input of the audience is the best tool in creating a show that is well-received. Great shows are not just born after years of rehearsal in one's home.

Honestly, the best thing that I ever did for my own education in magic was taking the initiative to busk with only three effects practiced as preparation. I did this for one summer. The beginning of that summer was deplorable. By the end, I was making an average of $22 per hour on the slowest days. The most influential and innovative street magician with whom I have ever spoken is Charlie Caper (the winner of Sweden's "Got Talent" series called "Talange"), and his best advice to me was to make a show, take it out, let it get ripped to shreds, and let it rise again from the ashes. Of course, this is a process to be repeated. That is how Charlie Caper began, and now he travels all over the world, enjoying a different city or country every few weeks. As he says, "If you have a good street act, you can make a good living anywhere in the world."

No show ever becomes great without first getting torn to pieces. Louis CK can attest to this fact as well. His first experience in stand-up comedy left him so disappointed that he didn't step on a stage again for two years, but that didn't stop him becoming one of the most currently celebrated men in stand-up. "Dying" is a necessary evil that is often the most effective process in shaping great performances and performers. Every day that my friend and I went out to the streets during the first month of summer busking, we would set up our table, stand nervously, then he'd look at me and ask, "Are you ready to die?" to which I would often respond, "I have no choice. Who is ever ready to die?" and we would proceed with our shows. I have never regretted that, as tough as it was to continue after days of shows that failed even to get a clap out of sympathy.

Every performer approaches the process differently, but I have seen both sides. I spent my early years hidden away in my loft practicing every sleight I could find. After five years of that, I had the best Elmsley Count that you can imagine. When I took that Elmsley Count into the real world, five years of practice let me get away with counting five cards as four, but nothing more. When the trick was over, I got a "Good job," and a pitifully fake smile. Five years of solitary technical practice had taught me nothing about entertaining an audience. For that I continue to suffer, and it is why I am majoring in psychology and theater - I need to grind my performing teeth so that they may be as sharp as the teeth of my technique. One friend of mine suffers from the opposite side; he is always looking for an audience, and never for a mirror. He gets the, "Good job" and false smile after his routines, but for the opposite reason. He refuses to improve his technique to match his ability to engage an audience.

Let me conclude with this: A balance must be stricken between practicing and presenting a stage-worthy act. Practice is something to be done alone with a camera, but presentation can never improve without the critique of an authentic audience, as the audience is the only gauge by which one may measure art.


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 Post subject: Re: Hey guys need some help on where to start
PostPosted: Sat Oct 06, 2012 3:46 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 22 Jan 2006
Posts: 306
Very well put and thank you for that advice I will definitely use it. I now have one more question. I currently work at subway as I Goto school. My boss asked me to perform on weekends to try and attract guests because our weekends are slow. She is paying me my normal hourly wage but told me I am allowed to have my business cards out and a separate tip jar. But idk how I would put on a show at subway.. just because its fast food.. should I stand outside the door? Or perform inside. At tables? Its different than other restaurants be aide people aren't waiting for their food..


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 Post subject: Re: Hey guys need some help on where to start
PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:39 am 
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Joined: 24 Jan 2003
Posts: 4110
Location: Milford OH
I work restaurants a lot, you can go table to table just do effects that you can do in your hands so you don't have to use their table space. Also do some bigger effects outside to draw a crowd into the store. Like cups & balls or rings or large silk effects


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