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Topic: Worst Magic Show Ever!!
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Aug 28, 2006 02:55PM)
I've been very fortunate in that most of the magicians I know put on a first class show. Well, my eyes were opened to the opposite extreme this last weekend. My family and I were at a nearby golf/ski resort. When I arrived, I noticed that the events calender listed a magic show for Saturday evening. Usually, I'm so busy performing that I seldom get to watch another magician and so, I considered this a real treat.

My kids look forward to the magic as well since, often, the magician may present one or two effects that they haven't seen before. I always teach my kids how to behave at a magic show and I encourage them to clap enthusiastically at the end of each trick. Well, this show really put my kids to the test.

The show started 20 minutes late with absolutely no warm up routine for the kids in the audience (there must have been at least 100 little ones and their parents). As a result, the kids didn't really know how they were supposed to behave at the end of each trick. The magician got over this by playing pre-recorded applause sequences!

Then there was the magic. We were subjected to a series of dollar store tricks with absolutely no presentation whatsoever. The kids who were brought up as volunteers, were never acknolwedged or even asked what their names were. They were simply dismissed after they performed their allotted duties.

At one point, he performed a card prediction that had some potential. But the fact that he kept emphasizing that it was an "ordinary" deck and the manner in which he manhandled his volunteers really diminished the impact of the effect.

I did some checking and understand that he has only been into magic for just over a year. He gets all of his jobs through an agent at about $150.00 per gig. But, money aside, I was astounded that anyone who has been into magic for that short a time would be doing paid shows.

I overheard him talking to some spectators after the show and, apparently, the magician thought the show was great. He did notice one or two glitches which he promptly blamed on either the volunteers or his sound guy.

I didn't know what to say or do after the show. If I introduced myself to him, I would either have to lie through my teeth, or devastate him with criticism. So, I just walked away. Even now, I'm not sure if I did the right thing since I'm sure that sometime this week, another poor audience is going to be subjected to the same show. What would you have done?

Kent
Message: Posted by: Marvello (Aug 28, 2006 03:03PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-28 15:55, magicman845 wrote:
What would you have done?
[/quote]
I would have watched the show politely, and then left quietly.
Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Aug 28, 2006 04:05PM)
There is not much that can be done, this guy is getting paid whether he is doing an amazing job or not, he may not think your opinion matters which would be very sad.
I have to disagree with you on the fact that I have been around magic just a little bit more then a year. Of course saying that, a performer with limited experience needs to be well educated on performing for his/her target audience.
Message: Posted by: todd75 (Aug 28, 2006 04:07PM)
That's the sad part about magic. There are soooooo many people who run out buy a few "tricks", print some business cards, take out an ad in the yellow pages and call themselves an entertainer. Without realizing it, they are hurting magic each and everytime they perform for anyone.

I think that everyone knows a bad performer when they see one. Sounds like you witnessed one. I too would have simply walked away.
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Aug 28, 2006 04:18PM)
Ryan,

I do apologize. I didn't mean to offend. I know there are exceptions to every rule. I'm sure that if that year is very well spent and a person immersed himself in becoming the best entertainer possible, he could put together a decent performance.

Kent
Message: Posted by: TrickyRicky (Aug 28, 2006 04:26PM)
Do we blame the magician or, the agent?.
Agents want to make the most they can--its a business to them.
That is why magic is getting a black eye in the public eyes.
Richard Lyn
Message: Posted by: Steve V (Aug 28, 2006 04:30PM)
Don't apologize! Ol' Ryan may not be an exception, we don't know but will assume he is. I wonder how much the agent got for the guy doing the show...I also wonder if they will hire another magician.
Steve V
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Aug 28, 2006 05:26PM)
Good point. You get what you pay for in this world. If an agent isn't willing to pay a decent rate, he isn't going to get the quality entertainers. So I guess part of the blame also lands on his doorstep.

Kent
Message: Posted by: Ryan Price (Aug 28, 2006 05:34PM)
There could have been many variables that only the agent and performer could be aware of. For instance the performer in question may have only been filling in for someone that had to cancel. Of course that is only a hypothetical and I doubt it. If the agent keeps booking bad talent then they will see their money reduce. People will only pay for a bad show once, and if they know better will not book them again.

As for if I am an exception or not. I would like to think that I may be. I am not just some kid that started entertaining. I am in college taking Business Administration and have almost a decade of performing experience (other then magic). I do take performing for children seriously and have spent hundreds on learning material from the greats in this business. It pains me to see other performers that don’t show as much dedication when they see continual bookings, well I’m just starting to get my name out.
Message: Posted by: todd75 (Aug 28, 2006 06:25PM)
$150.00 for a show at a resort? Sorry to sound so blunt but....they got just what they paid for!
Message: Posted by: NJJ (Aug 28, 2006 06:32PM)
If I ever did a show that bad, I'd hope someone would (nicely) let me know!
Message: Posted by: Steve V (Aug 28, 2006 08:03PM)
Nicholas...I need to tell you something....I'm kidding!

Todd, that is my point (or 'pernt' for you New Yorkers). The agent may have been paid $750 and the kid $150.
Steve V
Message: Posted by: Magic Arty (Aug 28, 2006 08:22PM)
The sad part is that the people in the audience, when they have the power to hire an entertainer for an event they are in charge of, are going to hesitate to hire a magician.
The more high caliber magicians/entertainers, there are out there, the better the job prospects are.
When an audience experiences a mediocre or lame show, that is how they are going to view our art, mediocre or lame. We have to strive to make our shows the best they can be, not just for ourselves, but for the sake of the art itself. (It does also help put food on the tables!)
Arthur
Message: Posted by: Smoke & Mirrors (Aug 28, 2006 09:18PM)
Look, it was my first show after rehab, I'm working on it!
Message: Posted by: Danny Diamond (Aug 28, 2006 09:29PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-28 15:55, magicman845 wrote:
What would you have done?
[/quote]

I watched a children's magician do a lackluster performance at the holiday party where I used to work, for three years in a row. They got the same guy each year, and every year he seemed annoyed at the kid's when they didn't behave exactly as he wanted them to. It made me feel embarrassed for the art of magic, but at the same time, it made me appreciate the gift I have with kids. I don't mean that to sound egotistical - but sometimes seeing the bad in one show, makes you see more of the good in yours. What's most annoying about watching another show, is seeing a trick that you do, but seeing the other performer not do it justice. In the show I watched at the holiday party, the magician did a boring and simple version of PB&J, and got nowhere near the reaction that I usually get (I use a routine based on Bruce Bray's). It's sad to see a great trick not getting the response it deserves.
Message: Posted by: KC Cameron (Aug 28, 2006 09:50PM)
It is hard out here for a pimp, trying to make money for the rent . . .

Poor magicians just make me look better. I think most people recognize the quality is because of the entertainer and not the field.

If the guy is open to criticism, then do it. It did not sound like this was the case. He charged $150 for what some may charge $750. Well, I find it hard to see how someone can complain about another when there is such a big price difference. I would expect a better magician for a larger fee.

I used to do resorts for $150, but I lived in a resort area. The crowd was from 3 kids to 15, and I was very happy having a regular weekday evening gig each week. They would never have paid much more, I was the most expensive entertainer, and they never knew how many kids would show up. This was a larger gig, but I would blame the resort for being cheap, not some poor guy trying to make a living. How can he threaten us??? there is enough quality magic available that I don't think it is that big a deal. If we could cut these guys out, who would do the cheap gigs??? I think they help us as well as hurt us, and I don't hear anyone jumping up and down to do a stage show for $150.
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Aug 29, 2006 11:03AM)
The trouble is the audience doesn't know if the entertainer has been paid $100 or $1000 for the show they are watching. In fact, many people in the audience may have never ever seen a live magic show, and they don't have any idea what a good magic show should look like.

At the end of the day, it's what the audience doesn't know that hurts the art. He threatens the art of magic by tarnishing its reputation. There were at least 30 families at the show. If that was their one and only exposure to live magic, they will likely never hire a magician themselves.

I don't know how much the agent charged the resort. The agent brought out giant inflatable jumping tents for the kids and gave out snow cones, all free of charge. He had inflatable decorations that filled the stage, and he brought out a decent sound system (even though it did seem to have a gltich or two in it). When you combine this with a free magic show, I'm sure he charged the resort a pretty hefty price.

Kent
Message: Posted by: magicgeorge (Aug 29, 2006 11:17AM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-28 22:50, CaptainKid wrote:
Poor magicians just make me look better. I think most people recognize the quality is because of the entertainer and not the field.
[/quote]

I can never decide whether bad entertainers make the good ones look good by comparison or wether we all get tarred with the same brush and they're bad news for all of us. I'm afraid it could well be the latter.

If a booker hired a magician who was unentertaining and couldn't control the kids making an event a disaster, would they seriously try a different entertainer next year?

George
Message: Posted by: Potty the Pirate (Aug 29, 2006 12:50PM)
I agree with most of the comments in this thread, but Kent, I think you SHOULD have approached the "entertainer" and given him a friendly bit of advice. Without getting too high and mighty, you could have (for instance) told him about the Magic Café. Poor entertainers can become great entertainers if they start to work hard and believe in themselves. This guy sounds like he probably will give up in despair in a few months' time, after he's had a really tough week with difficult kids! Or, he may stubbornly carry on and deliver lousy shows the rest of his life. But he might someday learn to carry off his act with style. Wouldn't that be the best outcome?
I don't think many entertainment managers at venues would assume that all magicians are the same, but it would be a fair assumption that many parents would. And more importantly, a child who has seen a lousy magician won't want a magic party for his birthday. So for the kids' parties market, this kind of performer might be detrimental. But also, if you're a good entertainer, you should be getting at least one or two bookings from pretty much every show you do. That means enough folks know about you to keep you in business for as long as you like.
I know of one local magician in my area who's been performing for many years, and his act is awful. I don't want to go into details, let's just say he simply hasn't got what it takes. Yet he still gets booked all the time because he's really cheap. You pay peanuts, you get monkeys.
Message: Posted by: Payne (Aug 29, 2006 01:15PM)
Unfortunately this type of performer is not open to any form of criticism, constructive or not. The quote

[quote]I overheard him talking to some spectators after the show and, apparently, the magician thought the show was great. He did notice one or two glitches which he promptly blamed on either the volunteers or his sound guy.[/quote]

pretty much says it all. The guy is a successful magician in his own mind and will continue to be until his dying day. After all he's got a big lucrative gig at a resort and all nay sayers and critics are just jealous of his success so why should he listen to them?

They only way to become a good performer is to first recognize that you are a bad one. It is a journey of self realization that too few every set out upon.
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Aug 29, 2006 01:37PM)
Potty,

I hear what you're saying and I seriously did consider going up to talk to him. But I honestly felt that he wasn't about to accept any negative comments or suggestions.

You see, he didn't know me from adam. I don't have an international reputation and he had never seen me perform. He didn't have any basis to even consider me his "equal" let alone someone who was competent to give him advice.

Hopefully, he will get the advice he needs from someone he knows and respects. Only then will it fall on receptive ears.

Kent
Message: Posted by: rossmacrae (Aug 29, 2006 02:28PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-28 19:32, Nicholas J. Johnson wrote:
If I ever did a show that bad, I'd hope someone would (nicely) let me know!
[/quote]
Problem with that is that some magi would gladly tell you your children's birthday show was bad because you didn't do enough fancy sleights (for 4-year-olds), or that you just weren't a proper magician because you don't have a backdrop and a music track ... and on and on.

Which would put the ball back in your court: how do you know, with any assurance, whether to smile and thank such a person for his useless advice, or whether to swallow your pride and take the advice to heart because (even though it does not accord with your current self-opinion) the guy might be right. ???
Message: Posted by: Marvello (Aug 29, 2006 02:42PM)
In a way, I think once you have reached a certain performance level yourself, you can sometimes learn a lot more from seeing a bad performer than from seeing a polished one. I have seen some magic acts that made me look at my own performances again in a new way, just to make sure I didn't make the same mistakes as the unpolished performer.
Message: Posted by: magicbern (Aug 29, 2006 03:20PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-28 22:29, Danny Diamond wrote:
[quote]

I watched a children's magician do a lackluster performance at the holiday party where I used to work, for three years in a row. They got the same guy each year...

I don't mean that to sound egotistical - but sometimes seeing the bad in one show, makes you see more of the good in yours.

In the show I watched at the holiday party, the magician did a boring and simple version of PB&J, and got nowhere near the reaction that I usually get...

[/quote]

But he got the booking - or three years straight. So perhaps the poeple in charge of the hiring saw something they liked. What I am wondering is that prhaps if you felt so aggreived at it, why didn't you offer your services? If you were working there, why didn't they hire you. Sometimes I think it's easy to criticize others and say 'I am much better than he is...' instead of just accepting that he got the booking - and you didn't. Seems a bit of sour grapes to me!

[quote]
On 2006-08-29 14:37, magicman845 wrote:
Potty,

I hear what you're saying and I seriously did consider going up to talk to him.

You see, he didn't know me from adam. I don't have an international reputation and he had never seen me perform. He didn't have any basis to even consider me his "equal" let alone someone who was competent to give him advice.

Kent
[/quote]

Very true...you are not the booker and I don't think it's our place as fellow performers to offer our 'critiques' to fellow entertainers. Remember that opinions of whether or not an act is 'good' are often subjective in nature. Unsolicited advice isn't usually appreciated - no matter where the source comes from or what the underlying intention was. Perhaps the best thing would be to view it from a critical perspective and a learning experience - then leave it at that.
Message: Posted by: magicalaurie (Aug 29, 2006 05:17PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-28 22:50, CaptainKid wrote:
I think most people recognize the quality is because of the entertainer and not the field.
[/quote]

I'd agree here.

...................

[quote]
On 2006-08-29 12:03, magicman845 wrote:
The trouble is the audience doesn't know if the entertainer has been paid $100 or $1000 for the show they are watching. In fact, many people in the audience may have never ever seen a live magic show, and they don't have any idea what a good magic show should look like.
[/quote]

People do know what they LIKE.

.......................

[quote]
On 2006-08-29 14:15, Payne wrote:
It is a journey of self realization
[/quote]

Should be. Indeed. :)
Message: Posted by: Potty the Pirate (Aug 30, 2006 02:30AM)
This does bring to mind the strange phenomenon of performing at big venues. For whatever reason, a performer who works at a large or high profile venue, is assumed to be "better" than most of the competition, otherwise he wouldn't have got the gig. Of course, often it's simply the case that large venues, despite their grand facilities and advertising, have less to spend on entertainment than average parents organising a kids' party. At least this is the case in my area. I'm often approached by large hotel chains, restaurants, malls and large venues, which can barely offer my minimum fee for a quick show. It creates a tricky situation in that I know I will generate lots of free publicity for myself, and get a lot of extra bookings, but I don't want to create the impression that I will work for ridiculously low fees. I do occasionally agree to do a charity gig at substantially reduced cost, IF the charity is a well-known kids' charity, AND the event will not lose me revenue from another booking. But I stick to my guns with businesses and hotels, knowing that they will likely decide to book a much cheaper entertainer, based solely on price, regardless of the act.
For instance, every family restaurant in Brighton would love to have a kids' entertainer on Sunday afternoons, but not one of them can afford the £300+ it would cost them to hire me. So there are a bunch of very ordinary entertainers, who can't get private gigs, who work some of the restaurants in town!
Message: Posted by: Danny Hustle (Aug 30, 2006 07:41AM)
If I were at a resort with my family and I saw a horrible, unprofessional, entertainer, I might be inclined to tell the performer he/she was horrible depending on the situation but I would absolutely tell the management the guy was the worst performer I had ever seen.

Part of my fee as a customer is going to support this guy's fee. In this case I would be responding as a customer not as a magician. I would probably not even mention that I was a magician. I would just say as a customer that guy was the worst steaming pile of you know what I had ever seen.

Somebody mentioned that the guy was probably getting $150.00 from an agent. The real issue is the agent was probably getting $1000 and sent this guy out there based on an interview and not on having actually seen this guy's show.

Most agents do not see a performer's show before they hire him (in my area anyway). Most of them book them because they showed up on their doorstep, or were recommended to them by another performer.

Even more sadly, they do not care if the performers are any good at all. They are only interested in how many complaints they will get and if the performers are bad enough that the customer will ask for their money back. That is the only thing that will make them stop booking a horrible performer. When the customer calls up and demands all their money back. If they call up and are appeased with $100 when they paid the entertainer $150, and then charged the customer $1000 they are still ahead of the game. It is only when the customer calls up and demands all of the money back that an agent might think twice about sending him out on a gig like that.

Even then the agent probably will not stop hiring him completely. He will just be demoted back to "kid shows" because any idiot can do a kid show, it is not as if entertaining 5 year olds requires any REAL talent.

Agents have no idea what they are doing when they send someone out for a gig. Unfortunately they think they know everything about the entertainment business because they have been sending horrible acts out to abuse the public for XX years and they are still turning a profit.

The magician in this case was an idiot thinking that he can buy a bunch of tricks, hang out a shingle, and do a gig. The agent is an even bigger idiot because the only thing he is concerned about is how cheap of an act he can get away with sending while pocketing the maximum amount of cash. Finally, the customer needs to be educated as well. For some reason people think that by going through an event planning agent that the act they get will be of a professional standard. 99.9% of the time the exact opposite is true.

Best,

Dan-
Message: Posted by: KC Cameron (Aug 30, 2006 08:56AM)
Most of us did not have the luxury of being trained by another magician. Most of us probably had a bad show at one time, and most of us probably thought we were much better than we were. We still probably think we are better than we actually are. I have known some magicians that made me cringe . . . yet I have heard the public praise them, and they got plenty of gigs. If magician thinks he is good, it is probably because people tell him so . . . so someone must be happy. Some magicians do not see any room in a magic show for puppets, and look down on Vents. Magicians often look down upon clowns & mimes. Comics look down on magicians because we use props and ideas others developed. Will this ever end??

How many of us know a great technical finger-buster magician who is very boring . . .but thinks he is Mr. Wonderful? Could that apply to me? It is a question I ask regularly.

I don't have any problems with cheap props. I could care less if the magician just got the prop out of a gum ball machine. What is important is how entertaining he is, not the “bling”. Magicians are terrible judges of what the public likes. How many times have you thought something was great, only to have it occupy a drawer in your back room for 10 years?

All in all, there really is nothing we can do to stop bad entertainment. To complain to the agent is to risk appearing pompous, and jealous that you did not get the gig - which may be true (not in this case). If the other magician is open, one may be able to mentor the BROTHER or SISTER performer - a true blessing to the whole community. How many of us who complain are willing to become a mentor??

The market will settle all disputes, and complaining really only turns into a magician "caste" system, which I am personally against. I think of all the magicians that criticize Cris Angel or David Blaine. The magic community has turned out in flocks to say how bad they are. These guys have made it to TV, so perhaps our judgment is a little clouded??? Maybe the public just doesn’t understand “good” entertainment! *G*

(getting down off the soap box)
Message: Posted by: Marvello (Aug 30, 2006 09:22AM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-30 09:56, CaptainKid wrote:
Most of us did not have the luxury of being trained by another magician. Most of us probably had a bad show at one time, and most of us probably thought we were much better than we were. We still probably think we are better than we actually are.[/quote]

Agreed, and I would be willing to bet that many magicians here on the Café who constantly and loudly proclaim that they can thoroughly entertain an army of kids with simply a wet noodle and their personality may be somewhat delusional as well (they are good enough to get gigs, but not as GREAT as they think they are). Let he/she who is without bad performances cast the first whoofle dust.

[quote]How many of us know a great technical finger-buster magician who is very boring . . .but thinks he is Mr. Wonderful?[/quote]

Unfortunately the world is filled with such magicians. I was amazed when I saw some videos of performances from FFFF - I assumed that it would be world class magic, but I literally fell asleep during the first long and drawn out card routine. (not saying everyone who attends is like this - but they do exist - trust me).
Message: Posted by: KC Cameron (Aug 30, 2006 11:06AM)
[quote]finger-buster[/quote] = a sign of a tired poster. finger-flinger/knuckle-buster - sorry
Message: Posted by: Danny Diamond (Sep 5, 2006 02:27PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-29 16:20, magicbern wrote:
On 2006-08-28 22:29, Danny Diamond wrote:
[/quote]

[quote]I watched a children's magician do a lackluster performance at the holiday party where I used to work, for three years in a row. They got the same guy each year...

I don't mean that to sound egotistical - but sometimes seeing the bad in one show, makes you see more of the good in yours.

In the show I watched at the holiday party, the magician did a boring and simple version of PB&J, and got nowhere near the reaction that I usually get...


But he got the booking - or three years straight. So perhaps the poeple in charge of the hiring saw something they liked. What I am wondering is that prhaps if you felt so aggreived at it, why didn't you offer your services? If you were working there, why didn't they hire you. Sometimes I think it's easy to criticize others and say 'I am much better than he is...' instead of just accepting that he got the booking - and you didn't. Seems a bit of sour grapes to me!
[/quote]

Well, first off, no - there were no sour grapes. If you want me to go year by year, I will explain:
Year1: I was just starting to build my kid's show.
Year2: I had only been doing kid's shows about a year, so I was still trying to gain experience and wasn't ready to accept a corporate gig.
Year3: I still didn't have many years of experience, and I had no interest in doing the show anyway.

So bottom line is, my opinion of the performer I saw, had nothing to do with jealousy or sour grapes. I wasn't even doing corporate gigs at that time. I was still honing my craft in livings rooms, weekend after weekend. Some of his stuff was ok, but some was not. He had no emotion in his performance. He seemed to be just going through the motions, and was a bit irritable.

I don't mean to sound egotistical, but I have a very good show and I can see the difference in the reactions I get, and the reactions he got.

Why was he brought back year after year? Maybe because he DID perform a magic show, and the kid's DID watch? My company booked a DJ, several dancers, an Elmo character, a Santa, the magician, and had little carnival games and a bunch of other stuff going on at their holiday parties. So the magician was simply a small part in a big picture. Really, as long as the guy didn't light a kid on fire or use any profanity - it was probably easier to just “get the guy we had last year”.
Message: Posted by: Alan Munro (Sep 6, 2006 03:31PM)
I was at a festival recently that had some young guy doing a so-called magic show. It looked like a bad dealer demo for MAK products. He didn't have experience and obviously didn't work hard on his show. He was busking there and got a decent enough amount in tips for one guy, but the trouble is that he had three other people with him - a dismal hat!

I was tempted to talk with the guy, but I thought better of it. He was trying to promote his "agency" and their website, long before he has a quality service to sell.

After the tips were collected, a woman from the local arts organization told him how wonderful his show was and how she enjoyed it. It was enough to make any self-respecting magician nauseous. I'm mostly against public funding for the arts, because if it can't make it in the marketplace it should be allowed to perish.
Message: Posted by: Memory-Jah (Sep 6, 2006 03:54PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-28 19:32, Nicholas J. Johnson wrote:
If I ever did a show that bad, I'd hope someone would (nicely) let me know!
[/quote]

That's what I think too.

@topic: Maybe you should have nicely introduced yourself and show him some directions and help. Give him some advice (introduce him the Café which is a wonderful place for every magician of each expiereience level). Maybe he wishes someone to help him more, and perhabs you and him could have spend some days together sharing ideas or just as a teacher and student. I think I would be happy if someone with more wexperience walk up to me and offers help! I miss that too from to time to be honest.


all the best

Jah
Message: Posted by: Magicray69 (Jul 23, 2008 11:54PM)
MagicMan,

I'm sorry you didn't like my show. You must be jealous of my talent. My wife and mother told me I am great and they never lie.

Did you notice I had a magic wand. Only real magicians have them. You certainly must have been impressed when I yanked that expensive Rice silk out of my $300 square circle.

How about the balloon animal I made. It was a sword. I practiced a lot on that one.

And the jokes. Did you like the one where I said "no, the clean hand please!"?

Don't forget the card trick. Remember, I had a rugrat pick a card from my deck and I immediately told him what card he picked. How many magicians can do that?

And the straight jacket escape. I paid $500 for that one. Since you are a magician, too, I will let you in on a little secret. It's gimmicked.

You must have noticed that the audience was so stunned that they were speechless.

I must go down to the Magic Shoppe now with my $150. They have a new trick in that is self-contained and easy to do.

Thank so much for your constructive advice.

MagucRay
Message: Posted by: richards (Jul 26, 2008 10:09AM)
MagicRay:

I saw you at that event too. I especially liked that trick with the vanishing bandanna that was really a banana...that was so funny. I've never seen that one done. That recording of the girl telling you not to actually put it in the bag after you put it in the bag...that was priceless! You should get an award for that one!!!

Brian
Message: Posted by: zimsalabim (Jul 28, 2008 01:43PM)
You know one thing I am so very grateful for is the time I worked with a director. Somone who is a it knowlegeable about magic but very knowledgeable about theater. Great stuff he gave me and did not charge for it I was being paid to do the shows and he happened to be the director of the big show watched mine kliked it but said it needed more and he was so right, nothing he gave constructiive critisism of the show and made it better and I use all of that advise ot this day. I love it whne magicians come up and talk to me after teh shows goo dbad or indifferent. I get somthing out of every conversation. But sometimes and lets face it guys we all are guilty of this at one time or another we see somone perform, and in the back of our mnds we have a preconceived notion of what WE want. If the public like the show and we don't well. I have heard so many say that people are polite they won't say it was crap if it was crap. Well I have seen just the opposite here, thank god not directed at me but have seen it and I think people know whats good and bad. Oh and as to the 150 price tag at a resort. There are tons of resorts in my area na dthe competition to get one is amamzing, somtimes you must price it right to keep it going each week. Ok again my 2 cents etc....

Z
Message: Posted by: Barry Donovan (Jul 28, 2008 02:09PM)
Did the other familys think it was rubbish as well?

I would of given him my honest simon cowell straight from the textbook, "sorry mate but that was ****"
Message: Posted by: zimsalabim (Jul 28, 2008 03:19PM)
Yes one could do just that. But it doesn't really get you anywhere does it. I honestly believe that if you cannot be creativly critical you should jus tnot say a thing. If you can be fair and honest and help then I believe you should try. But that takes agreat real of courage and determination to even start to say or do. I mean after all the person doesn't even know you and who are you to say. etc...


z
Message: Posted by: Mike Melito (Jul 29, 2008 12:51PM)
I take my kids to just about every magic show I can. Then we talk about what was good and what wasn't. This way my kids learn very early on what makes a good show.
Message: Posted by: Red Shadow (Jul 29, 2008 02:24PM)
I went to a theme park recently to see and interview the children's magician for this year for an article I am writing. I watched his show and was shocked with several of the tricks he did.

He started out with fire-eating, before borrowing a bank note and setting it on fire.
He then reproduced the note from an envelope which he opened with a knife. He then used that same knife to do the 'knife through coat' on a child's jumper.

I will say his audience management, comedy timing and overall enthusiasm was very good, but the tricks he selected were inappropriate for this children's show.

When I interviewed him afterwards about working in a theme park he was very helpful but I kept my mouth shut about the show. I was ever so tempted to talk about the tricks, but when he told me that this was only his second year as a professional magician and before this job he was a simple rides operator, I decided to give him the benefit of the doubt. He has never done a normal children's parties outside of park either. Hopefully when he goes professional he will change the tricks to meet the need of his clients.

Steve
Message: Posted by: zimsalabim (Jul 29, 2008 02:42PM)
Now that's interesting indeed. Did the theme park have any complaints about his choices? I also see he was asked back for a second year to do the job. Obviously hes doing somthing right. I'm not sure abu this choices either but you say its a childrens show in a theme park . Perhaps it would be better to call it a family show in a theme park. HOw did the audience respond?

Just curious


z
Message: Posted by: Bill Nuvo (Jul 29, 2008 03:54PM)
That is interesting. I find it an annoyance when customers label me as a children's performer which I am not. I make sure they know I am a family performer and my age group bottom line is 7 years old. Even with certain assurances, one can still be labelled as a children's magician, or be put in the "children's area" (I hate that one).
Message: Posted by: Red Shadow (Jul 30, 2008 05:12AM)
The theme park is targeted for 3-11 year olds, with just 3 rides for the adults.
He was playing the part of the court jester, and started working at the park 11 years ago. He started off serving fries in the restaurant and changed jobs each year. A few years ago, he was taken under the wing of the park magician, who taught him his tricks.
Two years ago, the park magician left and he took over the show.

You could argue that it was suppose to be a family show, but that still requires you to perform for children and it was mainly a children's show audience he had.

I had no idea what the management thought, but as I said; his personality and enthusiasm was top notch and so I doubt they had any complaints. Especially since he was a very long-term employee of the park, who has been with them for years. They probably see him as part of the family and give him lots of freedom to do what he wants.

Its just the tricks he selected were very inappropriate in my opinion.
Message: Posted by: Bill Nuvo (Jul 30, 2008 02:33PM)
Was the audience entertained? I've seen tonnes of children watch fire eaters, sword swallowers and such with no complaints from parents as the parents watch them too (obviously). This is something they enjoy together as a family as opposed going to see SpongeBob on Ice.
Message: Posted by: MikeHMagic (Feb 7, 2009 10:38PM)
How abot this, I know a guy who uses fire and a whip (yes a whip) in his kids show and thinks it is ok, nothing wrong at all.
Or is it just me?
Message: Posted by: solrak29 (Feb 7, 2009 11:14PM)
[quote]
On 2008-07-30 15:33, Bill Nuvo wrote:
Was the audience entertained?
[/quote]

Here is something I think should of been asked since the first post, if I missed it,
I apologize...but here is the case in point.

If the audience was entertained and saw magic then the show was good. No matter
what you think or say can not take that away from the performer.

Too bad, from our experienced eyes and not from the eyes of laymen, you see a dismal
performance.....

I try my best to see any show from this point of view rather than from my view...
How is the audience reacting? How does the audience feel? I tend to ask these
question to other spectators who where watching the show to check my self before
I pass judgement on what I just saw.

Grant it, most of your views I read...I can only agree with....
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Feb 8, 2009 12:36AM)
Wow, this is an old thread, but the event still brings back memories. I guess that means the show must have been good since I can't seem to forget it (LOL). As for the audience, there was only tempered, polite applause from the audience near the end of the show. For the most part, all I heard was painful silence. As I recall, three children actually LEFT THE SHOW before it was over.

Kent
Message: Posted by: Rodney Palmer (Feb 8, 2009 12:42AM)
Since this post has been revived I have yet to see the obvious posted. He was hired for 3-years in a row. The audience must have liked him and so did the planners. Also in this day/age some people DO NOT care if you are a Professional or not. I have the Perfect example. For the past 4-years I have performed the Magic Show at our First Night Celebration. For those of you who do not know what that is, it is an alcohol free event for New Years Eve. Back to the story, for 4-years I performed six shows in one day at various times. My Fee was $ 2100.00 for all six shows and I always had a standing room only crowd. However this year they decided on some NEW Talent for the Magic Show. They found a Magician with less than 2-years experience to perform all 6-shows for $ 400.00 total. To put it mildly he was not good at all, but guess what they invited him back for 2009 for the same 6-shows at the same $ 400.00 price. I went to the head person and asked why I was cut and she stated "Rodney, you are a very good, very entertaining magician but we just cannot afford to pay your price" so we found this guy to perform instead of you and at a much cheaper rate. She agreed that he was not good but his price was good. So how do you compete with the z-list magician who does b-day parties for $ 50.00 and I charge $ 200.00 and up. He seems to be getting all of the work. I even had one parent who was a regular customer for years state that all they really need is someone to do a few tricks and they really do not care if he is good or not because his price is right.

Rodney
Message: Posted by: montymagi (Feb 8, 2009 08:32AM)
I have to agree with Captkid. Magicians are very poor judges, in most cases, of other magicians. Even on here with out even seeing another persons show I have seen mud slinging. I hate preforming for other magicians. Part of the entertainment value of magic is the not knowing. Its like listening to rock music without instruments. The singing may not be the best and if you are a classical opera singer you will think it's terrible, but add the drums and guitar back in it and the public loves it. I would hope that if my act was not good someone would tell me, I would want to know. But if it was another magician I would want a second opinion.

Being a good magician does not make you a good business person. If you are being undercut or priced out of the market you have three choices to make. Gripe and complain about it, lower your prices or (and this is the one I suggest) find your market. A place where low talent won't come close to cutting it and the pay is on par. Not many people have a Porche although they are great cars. However I see a lot of Fords around that people are happy enough with. Just my 2 cents.
Message: Posted by: Wanlu (Feb 8, 2009 08:39AM)
OFF TOPIC:

I once did a show for a friend and the children of a fellow magician were in the gallery and as I bring out tricks, they repeatedly shout on top of their lungs "my dad has that one" and even tell the kids beside them how it's done. The parents were there...yes both the mom and dad are magicians and they never bothered to tell their kids not to do so. I had to bring items I was certain their dad does not have and everytime I perform such trick, I end it with "Your dad does not have that, does he?" which gets a big laugh from the audience. I did feel bad doing that...but well that was years ago and during then I tought the kids got what they deserve, if the parents who are fellow magicians cant even discipline their kids...or at least teach them how to respect a fellow magician when performing, then I really think they got what they deserve.

I trained my kids how to watch a magic show...btw, I have 8 kids :) They just keep quiet when the magician shows a trick they know and really appreciate seeing stuff they have never seen before. :)

I admire fellow magicians who know how to teach their kids how to behave as spectators in a magic show.

Now back to the topic:

If this happened in Manila, I would have also kept quiet and left without saying anything. In fact the same thing has happned to me several times in the past...and I did exactly so, I left without saying a word. Not because I don't care but because I think there is a "proper venue" for everything. I may turn out to be the bad guy if I approached him right there and then and told him he *ucks :) The kid might just feel bad. Eventually, that kid will join our IBM RING (IBM Ring 322 Manila, Magfi) and being one of the founders of the group, that is where he will hear a lot from me... :)
Message: Posted by: jlibby (Feb 8, 2009 08:41AM)
Rodney: That is very unfortunate and I'm sorry to hear it happened to you. Some people are going to buy only on price. But if everyone bought only on price, everyone would shop at Wal-mart and no one would shop at Nieman Marcus.

Joe Libby
San Antonio, TX
Message: Posted by: nums (Feb 8, 2009 03:01PM)
[quote]
On 2006-08-29 12:17, magicgeorge wrote:
I can never decide whether bad entertainers make the good ones look good by comparison or wether we all get tarred with the same brush and they're bad news for all of us. I'm afraid it could well be the latter.

George
[/quote]

If you add mud to water you do not get cleaner mud, you get dirtier water. The latter is what it is.

NUMS
Message: Posted by: Stevethomas (Feb 8, 2009 05:18PM)
Rodney, I hate that happened to you. Been there before. Some people don't care what they get, as long as they can say "magician". Here in the South, sometimes they won't hire you if you're local, either, they figure people are more impressed if the entertainer is from way out of town. We also have some guys nearby who will work for next to nothing..hard to compete when all the customer cares about is price.

Steve
Message: Posted by: Terry Owens (Feb 8, 2009 05:47PM)
JLibby, by the way Nieman Marcus sales are way down, but Wal-Mart's is up...lol

I've actually had other performers complain about me charging too much...I told them you charge what you're worth.
Message: Posted by: Danny Diamond (May 7, 2009 10:57AM)
[quote]
On 2009-02-08 01:42, First Class Magician wrote:
Since this post has been revived I have yet to see the obvious posted. He was hired for 3-years in a row. The audience must have liked him and so did the planners.
[/quote]

Rodney, the original post features this...

[quote]
On 2006-08-28 15:55, magicman845 wrote:
I did some checking and understand that he has only been into magic for just over a year.
[/quote]

So he wasn't hired for three years in a row. I think you are confusing my post with the original. But since you mentioned it, I will say that I did find something odd about your post. You mention specifically that "He was hired for 3-years in a row. The audience must have liked him and so did the planners." But then immediately after that comment, you tell a story about how you (an accomplished, entertaining performer) lost a gig to another (poorer performer) simply because the price was right.

Seems contradictory, no? You state that since the guy in my example was hired three years in a row, he must have been liked. But in your case, when you lost your gig, you admit that there are other, more important factors in the eyes of a planner trying to save money, than talent and being liked.

Like I said before - if a magician that was randomly selected one year, fits the budget, shows up on time, is not drunk, doesn't swear, and doesn't injure anyone - then they will often get an invite back the next year, because it's easier for the planner to get "the guy they had last year", as opposed to going through the searching process again and taking another chance on a new magician.

My point is that an invite back to an event, year after year, does NOT mean the show is necessarily good. It just means it was at least good enough.