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 Post subject: BUSKING
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 12:27 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 27 Jul 2004
Posts: 322
Before you say do a search plz read. I'm 14 years old and have been doing magic for 6 years. I live in th U.S. It is my passion and it's what I want to make a living at. I am particually looking into busking. I love this aspect of magic. I'm going into high school next year to get a trade because i plan on busking when i get out of high school, and if it doesn't work out i will have a trade to fall back on. Anyways i want to know everything their is to know about busking. The types of tricks, what to do when a heckler arrives, the hat line, the whole aspect of it, the tricks i should invest in, everything. Also i want you to share your busking stories and experiences with me.

Some questions i need answered:
What tricks should i get?
What areas should i busk in?
How to get a full hat?
What are some of the trics and secrets?
Everything i would need to know before i go out and busk can you tell me?


These are some of the websites and their tricks i think i should invest in for busking.If you have any comments or suggestions on the trick that is in here that shouldn't be in here or atrick that i don't have in here that should be in here. Thanx.

BTW all the tricks i chose should be able to be done surrounded if not can you plz tell me?

At www.penguinmagic.com:

1. The linking rings
2. The Gazzo Tossed out Deck
3.The Chain Escape ( to go along with the Mail bag escape)
4. Escapology Vol. 1. Escape from the ordinary


At www.themagicwarehouse.com:

If doves are good for busking and i should get doves then these:
1.Can you tell me any other good dove tricks that i can do surrounded?
2. Egg Bag ( though i don't know which one to get)
3.Airborn Coke bottle
4. Appearing bird cage
5.Appearing pole wood
6. Impossible Hank (Dancing hank without a foulard. Can be done surrounded)
7.Change Bag ( I don't know which one)


At www.magicpitch.com:

1. Street Cups and Balls
2. The Art of Crowd Keeping
3. The Street (and how it works)
4.Gazzo's street cups
5.Soccer balls (for the gazzo cups)
6.Gazzo on tour 2004
7. Street Wand


At www.ellusionist.com:

1. Street Theatre


At www.magicfact.com:
1.Torch to Cane (torch only) (i own an appearing cane)
2. Dove from silk
3.Dove Pan
4.Needled Balloon
5.Professor Cheer's Comedy Rope
6.Signed Bill in Lemon
7.The Vest
8.Wooden Egg (To go with the egg bag)
9.Sub TRunk Plans (ONLY IF I CAN DO IT SURROUNDED)

Well those are the tricks and their site i will appreciate any advice/information that you can give me!

Thanx!!


Devyn :D :D


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 Post subject: Re: BUSKING
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 3:22 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 09 Aug 2005
Posts: 150
Devyn,

Your enthusiasm to get into the busking world is amazing, and I would most definately encourage you to keep up your dedication. The busking world is an amazing place, where you can meet fascinating people, travel the globe, and meet fascinating people. It is so nice to meet someone who realizes what busking is actually about, and isn't just a David Blaine/ Criss Angel groupie.

I started magic at about the same age as you, and I started busking the streets when I was fifteen. Many people on this forum, including myself, argue that for the most part, 15 is too young to start busking, and kids should hold off until at the least 16, probably more likely 18. I started busking when I did in order to have pocket money (I never got allowance), and to help my parents out financially. Since then, I have at one point or anouther traveled through Europe and North America, and when I was 23 I got a 1 year gig on a cruise ship. When I started, I had a similar attitude to yours, eager to learn all of the tricks, and get out and make fat hats. Truth be told, the busking lifestyle is not nearly as glamourous as it appears you presume it to be, and before you make a stable income there is a long period of failor. In fact, some magicians, who've been performing since before I started, still can't make a living on the street. Working the street requires determination, a strong pain threshold (you're performing for 8-10 hours some days), and a love of entertainment.

Anyhow, enough about myself, you asked for help and suggestions.

In poker there's a phrase: play the man, not the cards. In busking, I use the phrase: play the crowd, not the tricks. As Paddy mentioned to a similar one of your questions in a previous post, it really doesn't matter what tricks you do: you earn money through how well you interact with the crowd. The success of a busking routine is 95% based on the entertainer, and 5% based on the tricks. As a result, what several people on this forum have been trying to tell you, and you haven't really yet understood, is that there is no such thing as "busking tricks": any trick that you love, and have a good routine for, can be transferred to the street.

The traditional busking routine has three parts: the begginning, the middle and the end. The begginning and the middle serve the soul purpose of building a nice crowd, and the end is the trick that makes people want to tip. The beginning and middle should be tricks that you are comfortable with, and can be stretched out or condensed depending on how your crowd is forming: a simple disapearing hankerchief, rope routine, or card trick are all simple ideas. The end should be impressive: this normaly entails either juggling, escape, linking rings, or cups and balls. This is where you need to make a decision: how will you close. Choose a closing and then work on refining it as much as possible. Read and watch as much as possible about that topic, and refine a routine that is truly impressive.

So a lot of your questions don't warrant answers: developing a routine is about self-reflexion as to what kind of career and personality you want to portray. When you decide what kind of close you want, let us know, and we can show you the right direction towards achieving greatness. Once you have a routine, hit the street and learn.

Where you start busking doesn't matter, anywhere with a good flow of people who are willing to stop and watch something interesting. If you get professional, you will probably have to migrate in the summer and winter to different locations, or work inside during the winter.

You'll learn a lot on the street about the street. I would also recommend watching other buskers, and consider investing in the following DVDs:

Gazzo: Uncensored
Cellini: Art of Street Performing
Peter Wardell: Crowd Puller
Don Driver: Building a Tip
Gazzo On Tour

As a general rule, any reference material on busking is worth getting. Even if there is only one thing in it that helps your show, it is worthwhile.

I hope this helps, Devyn, and I hope you understand why some of your questions don't have definitive answers.

Anyhow, it's 1pm Vancouver Time, and I need to head to my pitch.

Kindest Regards,

A


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 Post subject: thanx
PostPosted: Sat Jun 10, 2006 8:20 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 27 Jul 2004
Posts: 322
Thak you so much i can't believe all of your help. I definetly have the right attitude and determination. I would like to close with a cups in balls routine but before that perform the mail bag escape. Is this a good idea? What cups should i get? I will definetly have to invest in those dvds as well. Your review was amazing and i appreciate it. Can you share some of your stories about busking with me? I understand know that its not the tricks its the performer and the way the present the tricks. Like you could take the simplest trick and turn it into something they will never forget. You have really helped me. I don't live in a big city but i live in the US. in Massachuesetts. My town isn't that big and many people don't walk the streets so i plan on living in Boston for a while and try busking there. Thanx again!

Devyn

P.S. Its 10 at night here so i'm going to hit the sack. Peace. Be back tomorrow.


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 Post subject: Re: thanx
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 12:21 am 
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Penguin

Joined: 09 Aug 2005
Posts: 150
Okay, first off, what you need to remember is the street can be a dangerous place. People have tried to steal my amp, my hat, and my props (I still loose an orange every now and again). There is so much going on in a street show, that you need to keep a cool head all the time, and NEVER take your eyes off your props.

Using this tidbit of information, what problems could you see with a mail bag escape? You are giving the impression that you are locked in a bag and can't get out. When you are in the bag, you aren't easily portable and you can't see the crowd: good luck keeping your eyes on your props. If you wanted to do an escape routine, you could close with that, but choose a routine that allows you to always keep an eye on your props.

Also, the mail bag can't be performed surrounded. A curtain is required to be droped in front of the bag, meaning that it is not an ideal trick for the street.

The Cups and Balls would be a good choice, check out the following materials:
- 25 Tricks with the Cups and Balls (Cheap DVD, and this is the first DVD I got on the subject, it teaches you all of the basic moves, and gives you a basic footing)
- Gazzo's Street Cups and Balls
-Cellini's Art of Street Performing DVD Volume 2
- Dai Vernon's Cups and Balls on his Revelations DVD (I can't remember the volume number off hand. This feature Michael Ammar performing Dai Vernon's routine, and Dai Vernon making comments on the fly. Not the clearest DVD, but worth watching)
- Peter Wardell's Crowd Puller (A routine similar to Gazzo's, but a great Street Performing DVD all in all)

The above DVDs give the basics and the main routines found on the street. With the above DVDs, you will know all that you will ever need to know about performing Cups and Balls on the street. On the street you want to keep your routine simple, so you really don't need a complicated routine. Use the above material and create your own routine.

Check out Boston, I would highly recommend it. Cambridge offers a lot of possibilities also. I busked at Fanny Hall for a couple summers and loved it, Boston is a great city.

Andrew


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 8:40 am 
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Penguin

Joined: 27 Jul 2004
Posts: 322
thanx andrew and your probably right that the mailbag escape wouldn't be a good trick for the street but i really won't to do an escape before i do my cups and balls routine. Do you have any suggestions on the escape i should get? I would appreciate it. I will definetly have to invest in those dvds for my cups and balls routine. Also those dvds and books on street performing. I know that some of them are not on penguin can you tell me where i can get them? Thanx again!

Devyn

P.S. I would still like to here some of your stories from when you busked.

P.P.S. I will definetly have to look in to Boston more.


Thanx


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 12:02 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 26 Jul 2004
Posts: 1029
Location: Newfoundland, Canada
clownzippo wrote:
Do you have any suggestions on the escape I should get?

Look into getting a straight jacket.


As for doves in the street, NO! Unless you want to have your bird fly away. As well trained as they are, I wouldn't be willing to take my dove outdoors.

Linking rings. There are many good routines, personally I would shop around before buying the rings here, there are great cheap sets out there, you just have to look for them. Also, for routines, check out Cellini, McBride, Whit Hayden, or even Shoot Ogawa(the ninja rings. They're small, but could be fine depending on what type of show you're doing).

Cups and balls. Now, the Gazzo cups are probably some of hte best street cups on the market. But what I would recomend you do, is pick up some Bazar De Magia cups, or another set of cheap copper ones. I use Morrisey cups, cheap too. Use those first, learn about the cups, and work with them. Frankly, you should see if you're going to actually use them, before you go and spend like $300 on a set...

All your other questions should be answered in the books and DVDs you have listed.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 12:54 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 09 Aug 2005
Posts: 150
Yes, Doves wouldn't be adventageous on the streets. Not necessarilly because they are poorly trained, but more I would be worried about them attracting predators. Nothing like being dive bombed by a crow or raven who is hungry.

The Straight Jacket would work, but what I think you'll find, is (at least until you're really good) putting to climaxes back to back wont work. One of two thing will happen: (1) for your first climax no one will be there, and it will go to waste, or (2) You've built a crowd, climaxed, and sent the message to the crowd that the show is over, and then continued on with your show for anouther 15 minutes. This could bore your audience and make them walk away. A Straight Jacket really couldn't be anything more then a closer, you don't do the trick justice putting it in the middle of a routine.

Linking rings are a nice effect, but if you're doing the cups I wouldn't worry about learning them. I frankly don't think they play well on the street unless done really well, and they are not nearly as much fun to perform and practice as the cups and balls.

In terms of cups, I was given a set of Gazzo cups by Gary Animal as a thank you gift when I was busking in Covent Garden 8 years back, and have absolutely loved them since. They won't wear out, ever. Before that, I went through two sets of cups. I started out with Bazar de Magica cups, but ditched them when I started performing because they don't even hold a tennis ball. I then got a set of brass plated cups that held a tennis ball, which were covered with dents from everytime I dropped them on the ground. By the time Gary saw my show, there were dents all over the cups and it really wasn't an esthetically pleasing presentation.

So, what I would recommend...... Magicpitch the last Gazzo cups that will be made for a while, I recommend you look at getting those. BEFORE YOU DO, by three chrome milkshake glasses from a dollar store and four bouncy balls. For $5, you can learn the cups and balls and figure out if the trick is for you. Don't waste your money on second rate "magic cups" you end up accumulating a bunch of crap that will never get used.

Kindest Regards,

A.


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 2:53 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 06 May 2005
Posts: 401
There are a lot of things I learned busking that you never learn from books. a lot of people get into reading, and practising for street acts, and any act for that matter, which is fine but some people get so caught up in it that they never actually go out and do it. You learn more by going out and doing it than by reading about it so when your ready make sure you dont get to caught up in preparing for it because the street is unpredictable.

On the streets you will notice at first its very hard to keep a crowd. In a theater or magic show people are their to see You .vs. on the streets you are in their turf, and if you dont give them somthing amazing to watch they wont watch.

Streets are dangerous so dont go jumping into busking intill you have grown a bit NOW I DIDDNT SAY GOTTEN OLDER, because I started when I was 17, and I could have started even younger. But make sure when you go out for the first time you are taller and a bit more threatening looking. People will take advantage of kids on the street.

As for what tricks to use, Dont let anyone tell you what tricks you should use or not use. Magic is an expression of your personality, and if you are using tricks that arn't your own selected tricks, then you will have a hard time making your act flow, and if it dosnt flow you will have a hard time keeping a crowd. Remember you are in the spectators turf and they wont watch inless you give them somthing the must see. Be loud, peppy, exited to be their, and fun.

As for where to busk you will need to find that on your own most people wont give out their spots because they dont want competition. Busking requires a lot of moveing around so its nice to have your own car. Once you find a spot that is great dont give it up make your act better than the competition.

When you start hats are slim, your first day you will be lucky to get 2 dollars. But work at it and who knows in a month you might have 5 dollars, and In a year you could get 100. Busking takes pacience, and trial and error. but If you give it the time it needs, you may just get somewhere.


for anyone who may think I am just a kid gabbering on about a subject I know nothing on. Here are my credentials.

-I am 17 years old, I have busked for 1 year.
-I am a Magic castle junior member,
-and I am an Ibm member,
-and I have been in magic since I was 13.


Good luck my friend, and If you have any questions, feel free to pm me, or email me at Grahamcracker587@mail.com


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 4:01 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 27 Jul 2004
Posts: 322
thanx. You are probably right about a straight jacket, it will probbaly be a good trick. Its just that it is a good point that i should only have one closer. I have finally decided i will like to close with the cups and balls. Now i know the gazzo cups are alot of money and i can practice with some plastic cups to see if i like the cups and balls before i go out and buy the gazzo cups. i don't want to get more cups before i get the gazzo cups because they will brake and dent as you guys mentioned. It wil be just a waste of money, so given that information i think that i will invest in those dvdvs on the cups and balls and in those dvds for street performing. Do you think this is a good idea? I think that i will invest in all of those then after that invest in some tricks. I am not that big of a person so i don't plan on busking know but when i get out of high school and will have grown then i plan on busking in mthe streets of boston. Thanx for all of your help you guys. If you could share with me some of your busking stories and the closers that you use i would appreciate it.


Thanx again

Devyn :D :D


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 6:54 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 26 Jul 2004
Posts: 1029
Location: Newfoundland, Canada
Alright, I guess I'll be the first to offer a busking story. This is one of my better ones, in terms of how the streets can really be:

First day out, myself and tonyjones102(Tony), were downtown at a small pitch we had picked out to do a trickle show. We would stop them, do a short card routine, and have the hat laid out with some bills already in it.

Things were going well, we were out for about 3 hours, and had made around $80 or so. Well Tony was performing Liquid Metal to some guys, when a drunk stumbles up. He was standing up watching, and started talking to me, so I was talking to him for a bit(I could smell the liquor off his breath). Finally Tony finishes the routine, the drunk reaches in his back pocket and says, "I got a switch blade here in my back pocket, I'd like you see you bend that!", and begins to pull it out. We convince him to keep it in his pocket, and say that we're leaving now. He says that he has some friends that he's going to get now, and they'd love to see us perform, and have lots of money. We tell him, ok we'll probably still be here but we're not positive. As soon as he leaves, we take down our stuff, and head up the street to another location, and get picked up for the day.

That was my first day on the streets. Needless to say, it prepared me for much anything else I could experience(I've heard some extremely bad stories though, including magicians being beat within inches of their life).

But anyway, hope you enjoyed it. :wink:


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jun 11, 2006 7:55 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 27 Jul 2004
Posts: 322
i really enjoyed it and i guess it can be pretty rough out there on the streets. I better get prepared for anything. That was a good story and i probably would have done the same thing if i was you. SCARY! What do you think of the cups and balls being my closer? Any points you need to add?

Thanx man!

Devyn


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 2:02 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 27 Jul 2004
Posts: 322
Anyone else wont to add any other stories? Thank you all.


devyn


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Mon Jun 12, 2006 7:46 pm 
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born to perform.

Joined: 02 Oct 2004
Posts: 617
Location: SAM 104, SYM 126
Good luck have fun and dont be shy, dont buy professor cheer because the hook up will be annoying. think outside of the bubble you dont have to be like everybody else and use cups and rings. Like danny hustle he uses a vanishing bottle.


-thank you


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Tue Jun 13, 2006 6:20 am 
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Penguin

Joined: 27 Jul 2004
Posts: 322
thanx ween,
I want to do the cups and balls though as my closer. I really like the effect. Do you or anyone else have any points on them. I think i'm going to invest in all the books and dvds you guys mentioned and in the gazzo cups. Its very expensive but i am devoted to magic and want to busk. Thanx for all your help. If you want to tell me something or add something let me know. Thanx.


Devyn


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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Wed Jun 14, 2006 8:45 pm 
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Penguin

Joined: 06 Jun 2006
Posts: 5
thanks


Last edited by nowyouseeitmagic on Wed Aug 02, 2006 12:08 am, edited 1 time in total.

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