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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » A tangled web we weave... » » Is your audience actually fooled, or just being polite? (2 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

ddamen
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Bay Area
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Https://www.stevensmagic.com/1995/t-a-wa......s-front/


Reminds of countless magicians still performing linking rings for adults. Even if you disagree, I think the article is a worthy read --- especially in this age of the internet savvy audience.
"My counterbalance to... noisy and orgy-like magic videos....one has to re-look at this video to know what had exactly happened. Screaming and running around audience....convince everyone that the particular trick was fantastic." LF
jstreiff
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I really like Waters' writings in general and this is no exception. Here is what I mean, from the article:

"For the rest of us the problem is that magic - true, mystifying, wondrous, entertaining magic - is very, very hard to do. Magic, done with a sense of art, is one of the most demanding of all theater arts. Given good basic material, it is still extremely difficult to create a magical experience; without that good material, it's impossible.

The basic notion of magic is that it is the seemingly impossible; that may seem a tautology, but so many in magic seem to have lost sight of it. It isn't making spectators laugh; it isn't impressing them with dance moves; it isn't parading pretty assistants around the stage. Magic is making the audience believe they have seen something impossible happen - and so it must begin with mystery; not a puzzle, not a peculiar box, not an excuse for gaglines, but mystery. If the magic isn't baffling, IT ISN'T MAGIC.

Near the beginning of this harangue I quoted from Ted Annemann, who knew a little bit about how to truly baffle an audience. Let me conclude with another quote, from someone else who knew a little something about magic and theater.

A REAL MAGICIAN'S TASK, IT SEEMS CLEAR, IS TO ABOLISH THE SOLUTION, THE POSSIBILITY OF *ANY* SOLUTION .. REMOVING FROM MAGIC THE ELEMENT OF WONDER IS NO LESS DISASTROUS THAN MUSIC WITHOUT THE ELEMENT OF PITCH. - ORSON WELLES"

So very true!
John
terryisaacs
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Thanks for posting this article. I think that there are definitely different points of view on this but I agree with the article. Really appreciate this.
"What we do in life echoes in eternity"
0pus
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New Jersey
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Being somewhat off-center, I got most intrigued by this:

Quote:
Annemann's particular bete noir was the Mutilated Parasol; it was beyond his comprehension how any performer could believe that this prop, bearing little resemblance to any umbrella the audience had ever seen, could fool anyone. Bruce Elliott, who reviewed many shows for Annemann's JINX, concurred in this assessment. Indeed, I've never met a layperson who didn't know after a single viewing EXACTLY how the effect was performed.

. . .

Interestingly enough, the original [version of this effect WAS] deceptive. The Mutilated Parasol (or Sunshade) used a real parasol . . . . BUT . . . the original Parasol required some skill to perform; it wasn't automatic in working and didn't require a mechanical and therefore marketable prop.



I would like to find out more about the original. Can anyone direct me to a source?

It might be informative to trace the devolution of a deceptive effect.
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » A tangled web we weave... » » Is your audience actually fooled, or just being polite? (2 Likes)
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