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Topic: Visiblity of misers dream
Message: Posted by: limhanchung (Oct 20, 2005 04:28PM)

I am currently working on a misers dream for a dinner show type of setting. I use coins that are about half dollar size. I use a stainless steel pail. The coins are not very visible for the audience at the back but the sound of the coin is loud enough for them to hear. Am I worrying too much? How do I make the coins more visible?

Message: Posted by: icentertainment (Oct 20, 2005 06:10PM)
Have a spot light on you and as you produce the coin- pause and hold it and twinkle it so the light reflect off the coin.

Also make sure that the clothes you wear are Black or a dark color as well as your back drop (if you have one)

so when a coin is produced it is the most visible.
Message: Posted by: KenW (Oct 21, 2005 11:27AM)
Start getting the Silver Polish out and get to work! I find that taking time to POLISH every coin before each performance is well worth the effort. Yes, Hold each coin after it is produced, for a moment longer than what you might be use to but this way, if you wiggle the coing slowly and hold it's display, your audience has time to adjust to the mircale that just took place and they can see the twinkle of the shinney coin. Wear a dark coat and if possible, dim lighting and use a follow spot or two. One soft on you from waist to head and the other set to hard edge on your hand and the coins. Good luck, I love the Miser's Dream. I use Patrick & Mia's Coins and Pail. These coins are much larger and lighter and thinner and gimmicked to enable you to do many things. The coins come in Silver or Gold. Check them out on his website. I think you will like what you see. His Miser's Pail is very, clever.
Good Luck,
Message: Posted by: kerdunge (Nov 1, 2005 03:52PM)
1,Doug Henning, 2, Adams magic set, 3, Poker Chips, 4, "love is like a magic penny" 1, The first big magic show I ever went to was Doug Henning's. He did the Misers Dream and I who had bought a cheep seat was in the last ten rows of the theater and could not see a thing and it occured to me that he was doing the show, basicly for the first 4 rows and it made me mad. And I'm still mad, because when I was a youth I had an Adam's Magic Set with a dime coin catcher and I used it to perform the Miser's Dream. A friend who watched my rehearsal of the trick said to me "That was great pantamime with the sound effects in the bucket and all but I couldn't figure out what it was you were pulling out of the air?" So I learned I needed bigger coins, and Doug Henning should have known better, and 30 years later I'm Still mad. 3, This past summer I attended the Twin Cities "Close Up and In the parlor" magic convention where Al Schneider showed us some things he was working/ playing with. One of his Ideas was to use some Super sticky tape and tape a poker chip to your thumb, I have not yet found the double stick tape he was using, but the tape I have found has been working well and so have the poker chips for doing the Miser's Dream. 4, I perform the miser's dream while I sing an old song called "love is like a magic Penny", I've wrapped up a poker chip in some copper colored foil and I've cut another poker chip in the shape of a heart and I switch between the two as I perform. One important point... Use a very sticky tape not super glue, unless you want to be practicing for several days streight and answering a lot of questions like "What's that on your thumb? and Why you holding that fork so funny?
Message: Posted by: Frank Simpson (Nov 1, 2005 04:48PM)
I saw Doug Henning do Miser's Dream many times from good seats and bad, and I always enjoyed his routine. However I do think that in the extremely large theatres it might not be the best choice. But really, 30 years is a long time to carry a grudge...

I do mostly dinner shows like you mention and I always open with Miser's Dream. I use genuine half dollars and an aluminum bucket I bought from Tannen's a long, long time ago. I removed the "kellar coin catcher" handles as they added nothing and in fact would often cut my hands during performances.

In my routine I begin with slower moves onstage, choreographed to let each coin "read" to the audience. Wiggling them after producing them is a good idea to let them catch the light. Even without a spotlight it at least lets them see the gleam. (Polishing the coins is an excellent idea, but I'm afraid I'm guilty of only doing so about twice a year.)After several "beauty moves" onstage I proceed into the front row and produce two or three coins from audience members there, with specific patter about them. The remainder of the routine is running through the audience collecting coins from hair, ears, elbows, etc. I try to make it as far towards the back as I can (at least 2/3 of the way back) before making my way back to the stage. In between catches I'm constantly rattling the coins in the bucket for good sound reinforcement. Once I reach the front I ask one more spectator to help me by imagining that they catch a coin. Then I have them toss it into the bucket. As the laughter from this effect peaks, I grasp their nose for a final stream of coins. In 20+ years of doing this it has never failed to be an automatic applause point and an excellent finish to my routine.

One of the reasons I open with this effect is that it gives me a chance to engage my audience directly and get a sense of what they'll be like for the rest of the show. I have never had a complaint that people couldn't see or didn't know what I was doing.
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Nov 2, 2005 09:24AM)
Last year, Murray Hatfield performed a beautiful miser's dream on stage in a very, very large auditorium. I was quite a ways from the stage and had no difficulties whatsoever is seeing or hearing the coins. However, to do this you need large, shiny coins - I would even go so far as suggesting highly polished manipulation coins. Also, you need to really practice the pantomime for the production of the coins. It's not so much what the spectators actually see, but what they THINK THEY SEE that is really important. Combine that with the sound of the coins and you will have a winner on stage.

Message: Posted by: limhanchung (Nov 2, 2005 05:31PM)
On 2005-11-02 10:24, magicman845 wrote:
However, to do this you need large, shiny coins -

How large was his?
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Nov 2, 2005 07:05PM)
I have seen many stage performers use coins like the Harry Anderson manipulation coins. I believe they are close to 2 inches in diameter and very shiny.

Message: Posted by: EddyRay (Nov 11, 2005 09:40AM)
I use Norm Neilson coins, same size as the Andreson ones and they show up quite well. Keep them polished and flicker them in the light.
Message: Posted by: Pete Biro (Nov 12, 2005 12:09PM)
Sound, lighting and your acting ability are more important than the moves. You can just walk thru the audience with a fist full of coins pulling them from ears, etc. and tossing them into a bucket... a great opening bit for an act with cabaret or parlour type setting.
Message: Posted by: Shane Baker (Nov 13, 2005 07:20PM)
Incidentally, if you do it one particular way, you don't have to spend all day polishing a bunch of coins, one good shiny one will suffice.
Message: Posted by: Don (Nov 14, 2005 07:48AM)
That is true,it again also depends on your presentation,that is the most important thing.