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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » What is your opinion on video editing magic ? (25 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Terrible Wizard
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So, an entire stooges act is magic whereas a video edited act is not? To be fair, I would see neither of those things as magic - they have become drama; moved from one performing art to another.
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funsway
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Quote:
On May 9, 2017, Terrible Wizard wrote:
This discussion about at what point in the line magic ceases to be magic and becomes something else got me thinking. What about stooges? They seem a contentious 'method', though perhaps more accepted than video editing.



I can relate back to my early days mentored by Arnold Furst. He was expert in creating instant stooges using sub-vocal commands
and recognizing when he had a fully cooperative assistant. It was very entertaining and often led to, or was combined with hypnotism and mentalism effects.
but, he did not consider these to be magic! Look at the Furst Principles.

In order for magic to occur in the mind of a spectator, they must"

1) know you are magician capable of demonstrating the impossible,
2) know you are planning on presenting such a demonstration,
3) know you are doing it NOW!

Yes, some observers might, because of his reputation as a magician, find something magical in a comedy hypnotism act, but it was not his intent to "do magic"

Like Ormand McGill, when doing a large show he did conjuring type effects first, followed by a break, then did mentalism or hypnotism.

By extension, I can find many presentations on video or TV to be entertaining, and find them all to be 'edited' by the nature of their limited view. But magic?

Personally, I make a distinction between creating/finding a cooperative volunteer assistant and using a planned stooge.

Also, if you ask ab assistant a question using a multiple out principle in which whatever they say is "what you want," are they a stooge? Is the performance edited?

In a shell game where the pea is secretly not in play, is not the result edited? It is a con and not magic when used to cheat, but can be magic when presented as entertainment.
"there is real merit in the magician who tries to be creative – from such endeavors magic sustains its life energy." Harold Rice



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Terrible Wizard
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Thanks for giving the Furst principles, funsway - more food for thought!! Smile
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Wilktone
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Quote:
So, an entire stooges act is magic whereas a video edited act is not? To be fair, I would see neither of those things as magic - they have become drama; moved from one performing art to another.


What if it was a performance where only a handful of the audience members (maybe even just 1) wasn't a stooge? If the spectator found the performance entertaining and deceptive, does that fit your definition of magic?

What about those instructional videos where the performance demonstrations have over the top reactions that were probably coached? You probably know the ones I mean, different videos by the same production company always have the same audience members. The magic themselves is often excellent, but the audiences reactions are faked.

Quote:
In order for magic to occur in the mind of a spectator, they must"

1) know you are magician capable of demonstrating the impossible,
2) know you are planning on presenting such a demonstration,
3) know you are doing it NOW!


I like #3. It eliminates video editing from the equation because it happens after the fact, yet allows for prep time in advance that makes the magic appear to happen in real time (e.g., the carpenter who built the gimmicked box).

But what about #1 and #2? If I perform a trick impromptu for someone that doesn't know I'm a magician and present it in such a way that they don't realize I'm performing a trick at first (they only realize it when it's over) does it cease to become magic and just become a practical joke?

Dave
Terrible Wizard
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If a few in the audience are not stooges and experience a magic effect then I guess some would call that magic. I'm not sure I would.

A whole show whereby a group of actors feign a magic trick for the benefit of a few spectators sounds closer to a deceptive drama than a magic show as I interpret that term; I think such a show would better deserve the epitaph of 'fake magic show', or 'pseudo-magic show', or 'a magical drama.' But without the traditional performing skill of magic and only the performing skill of acting, wholly absent one art form and entirely comprised of another, it cannot really lay claim to be that form which is absent. That would be even more of a stretch than to call a magic show a theatrical drama! Smile

Instructional videos are a different animal in that they are part show part instruction. The show part, though, is magic so long as magic skill is demonstrated without the use of editing to accomplish the effect - though the degree to which the audience reaction is coached is the degree to which it becomes manipulative and deviates from the ideal.

Consider the art as a target of concentric circles, the bullseye being the skilful live performance of a magic trick. As we add and take away features we move further away from that ideal; mass stoogeing, recorded performance, video editing, audience manipulation and the such like lie outside the bull.

At some point, a subjective judgement (though possibly a consensus subjective judgement) forms the line between magic and non-magic. I place that line pretty close to the bullseye, others maybe farther away. But at some point we reach the line whereby the majority can no longer accept a show as magic - it is too far removed from the definition.
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funsway
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Quote:
On May 10, 2017, Wilktone wrote:

But what about #1 and #2? If I perform a trick impromptu for someone that doesn't know I'm a magician and present it in such a way that they don't realize I'm performing a trick at first (they only realize it when it's over) does it cease to become magic and just become a practical joke?

Dave


I have written many post on this over the years because that is exactly what I did during presentations for business owners over twenty plus years.
One reason why my views are often a bid different form those of others who feel magic is only for entertainment.

I used magic effects during meetings with business owners as either allegory or to "shake up" their thinking as to what is impossible in their business to solve.
Often times, an ideal solution is missed or ignored by an owner if they believe the problem is impossible to solve.

By tossing in a magic effect with no announcement or expectation and usually employing objects found at the location,
the reaction was (more than 90%) -- "so, perhaps this problem isn't impossible -- I just have to look at in differently."

Based on tens of thousands of such performances I would offer that effects presented live that violate #1 &2 will not be considered magic,
but the observer will challenge their personal view of impossibility. Very few over said something like, "So, you are a magician,"
and none ever though it was a 'practical joke."

All people are faced with difficult choices in life, and often the greatest obstacle is personal beliefs based on wrong or incomplete experience/information.
When they see a magic performance (meeting the Furst Principles) they are given hope and confidence to meet life's challenges.
Though they know the demonstration includes artifice or deception it is a theatrical way of acting out defeating the impossible without personal peril.

When it is not known that the person is a magician and about to demonstrate defeating the impossible "for fun" or "as allegory" --
the observer has no expectation that magic effect is about to occur, then the conclusion is "maybe what I consider to be impossible is in error."

The Third Principle is important in changing expectation to anticipation -- and there for surprise.

New findings of neurobiology as to the working of the orbital cortex support the principles. Input is routed and handled according to the experienced expectations
of rewards and evaluation of limbic reactions and the need for higher order processing (decision). An announcement of being a magician,
or expectation of the observer that a magic trick is about to occur will lead to a different routing of mental processes that one of surprise or challenge to prior beliefs.

I personality feel that observing ANYTHING on a computer or TV screen has a different expectation and anticipation that experiencing an event live. i.e.
the material is processed differently in our brain and the conclusions/reactions are different.

However, other studies indicate that people are being addicted to entertainment at a chemical level that influences the orbital cortex function.
So, it is possible that some can have a reaction to vicarious demonstrations and react differently that I ever would -- including saying, "That was magic."
My fear is that they will no longer be able to appreciate live magic as I do and have -- or even hold the same concepts of "impossible."

I can never repeat my experiences with "vicariously biased" younger business owners and no one else can either -- so, my views may be of little consequence -
except to let folks know that what is happening today is not the same as decades ago. Better? Worse?

What I do know is that I can perform magic effects any time, anywhere with found objects and have an AFFECT on people's lives --
no matter if it is "for entertainment" or "for example" or "to challenge beliefs." I do not feel that is true for any effect shown on TV or FaceBook.

Some might say that what I did was "not magic" since it was not for entertainment.
Yet, what is it to be called when you kindle an observer;s imagination and they react with feelings of awe and wonder
will little care to find out "why" or "how?" They see the "wink" and say, "Oh, that is what real magic looks like." or
"Maybe I had better rethink what I believe about impossible things.

Either way they can say, "Perhaps I can solve that problem bothering me."

PS -- I never charged for any performance no rmade any claim as to personal ability.
"there is real merit in the magician who tries to be creative – from such endeavors magic sustains its life energy." Harold Rice



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danaruns
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Resurrecting this because I wanted ask if anyone had a comment on Will Tsai's performance on America's Got Talent last night.

https://youtu.be/RDl7VE8xL8c
"Dana Douglas is the greatest magician alive. Plus, I'm drunk." -- Foster Brooks
Dougini
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Dana that was fabulous! Thanks! That table must have been custom made. Truly magical! Ask Peter Loughran if he has seen those workings before.

Doug
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