(Close Window)
Topic: Street Illusions
Message: Posted by: Justin McWilliams (Apr 12, 2003 01:03PM)
I'm looking to get into doing illusions on the street,what are good things that can be done comepletly surrounded and leave an awesome effect? I'm looking for any thing and everything, levitations, vanishes, sawing in half, you name it I'm looking for it. Thanks for your advice.
Message: Posted by: Franfran (Apr 12, 2003 01:18PM)
The twisting illusion arm is great and can be performed surrounded.

For the others, you're going to have trouble to find easy one that can be performed really surrounded.

Try the Andrew Mayne website : Pocket Seeing In Half, Bissection are great...

Franfran la Malice :kermit:
Message: Posted by: Justin McWilliams (Apr 12, 2003 03:17PM)
Bisection? Do you have that? How is it? What kind of angle things are with it? What can you tell me about that?
Message: Posted by: Tor Egil (Apr 12, 2003 04:16PM)
Bisection can be done surrounded if you use a hoola hoop. It's not a trick you can perform on the streets. It's for stage magic. It is a really cool trick. Its cheap and easy to make. I recommend it.
Message: Posted by: Franfran (Apr 12, 2003 05:43PM)
I think that it's not that impossible to perform bisection outside. You have to be careful and, of course, you can't do it everywhere, but I think it can be easily done.
Message: Posted by: Symmatrix (Apr 12, 2003 08:26PM)
Hi Closeupmonte,

Nice topic to discuss...Why not check out the Shock FX video? Great illusion effects to be done on the street.

Symmatrix :firedevil:
Message: Posted by: Bone (Apr 14, 2003 01:28AM)
Yeah right man, Andrew is a cool guy, I like him, his illusions are quite wierd and funny.

Message: Posted by: Pablo Tejero (Apr 14, 2003 05:12AM)
I have to recommend too Andrew´s illusions. They are cheap, they are for stage or street magic, they are easy, and the best of all, they are... great!

By the way... i love bisection.

All the best magic,

Pablo Tejero :bikes:
Message: Posted by: Justin McWilliams (Apr 14, 2003 09:32AM)
Hey symmatrix, where can I find this Shock FX video?
Message: Posted by: Franfran (Apr 14, 2003 09:40AM)
You can get it on Andrew's website http://www.weirdthings.com or on most of the magic store online such as http://www.penguinmagic.com


Franfran :kermit:
Message: Posted by: Harry Murphy (Apr 14, 2003 10:29AM)
It is true that some of Mayne’s “illusions” can be modified for a street venue. However, most are angle dependent and really not suited for adaptation to the street.

Many of the smaller “illusionettes” (small illusions) of the late 1940’s and early 50’s were designed for the Night Club venues (close-up and almost surrounded) that closely approximately the conditions found on the streets. They were designed to be angle proof. Many involved head chests, sword/spike through the neck/middle, head choppers, suspensions, and the like.

Several old standards are can actually be performed surrounded. Think of the sword or broom suspension, and the Sword Basket.

The problem you will face with performing your illusion on the street is that you have to get it there and back again! Most illusions are not made for easy transport and made to just be sitting around in the open all day while you do repeat shows.

That said, for the odd special street level festival show a small illusion can make your act look bigger. The various head chests come to mind. Or, if you don’t want to use an assistant but would rather use a “volunteer” from the audience, then a Head chopper or Sword through Neck might be for you.

Keep your Zig-Zag’s and Miss-Made’s for your formal stage performances where they can be presented properly.
Message: Posted by: Justin McWilliams (Apr 14, 2003 07:03PM)
Very good advice, Mr. Murphy. I'm going to have to keep that in mind. Now, what if I were going to do a street festival, and I can set up wood on the ground to keep a level surface, do you think I could still present a Zig-Zag out on the streets?
Message: Posted by: Harry Murphy (Apr 15, 2003 07:46AM)
You could but why would you want to. You will have the audience right on top of you at street level and they may see what you don’t want them to see.

Most of the larger illusions are better framed on a platform/stage environment. I think that IF I was going to try for an illusion show at a festival that I would at least want a raised platform or stage area to perform on.
Message: Posted by: Justin McWilliams (Apr 15, 2003 11:54AM)
Some of the things I want to do is add a straight jacket, maybe do some sort of larger street routine, more than just cards. You are a big help, Harry. Thanks for your good words and advice.
Message: Posted by: JamesinLA (Apr 17, 2003 03:24AM)
The Mignon production of a human being can be done surrounded so I've read. But I would listen to Harry Murphy's advice on this (as well as other things) re: doing a stage illusion on the street. The Mignon is explained in the Byron Wells book. I think you can also buy the illusion plans separately from Tannens.
BTW Harry, I finished my flying carpet recently and performed it for the first time this past weekend. The audience gasped when she spun around. It looks great too. Thanks for your help! I would like to PM you with a few pointers on it.
Message: Posted by: kasper777 (May 6, 2003 02:01PM)
What about a chair suspension? I currently work the streets and I'm thinking about putting one in my routine. It can be done surrounded and not hard to transport. Any thoughts??
Message: Posted by: Justin McWilliams (May 6, 2003 02:53PM)
Seems like it may have some potential however Mr. Murphy had a few very valid points. Can it be examined, just out of curiosity on my part.
Message: Posted by: Matt Ferro (Aug 15, 2003 02:53PM)
i heard somewhere that you could download it on an ebook for five bucks but i looked and couldn't find it. help?
Message: Posted by: Pakar Ilusi (Aug 16, 2003 03:50AM)
Go for it I say! It looks like you want to already or you wouldn't be asking this question, right?

Whether illusions look good or not in your act is up to your presentation imo...

To put it into perspective, you won't be the first to do this... I have seen a few name Magic acts perform illusions on the street, Mark Kalin and Jinga(WGM), Criss Angel, Blaine(minus camera tricks...) and a lot of escape acts. Even Houdini performed escapes outdoors quite a bit. Great way to promote your act as you'll look "bigger" than the usual street act.

Just a few questions to ask yourself though...

What's your character in the act? This might help to determine the kinda illusion you wanna perform and invest in...

The folding chair suspension is great as it makes sense that a chair is around, imo...

If you have the budget, I would humbly suggest you look into making a base-type illusion which if designed right might also double as your "portable stage"! Though this might be expensive, so think about it...

Do you have an assistant for this already! May I suggest you get one (or get a few actually!) who is petite to make any base-work "cleaner"! It will be less stress on the chair suspension too! Lol!

If the illusion (or certain parts of it) can be examined then you will be the talk of the festival, trust me on this one!

That's all off the top of my head for now!

Good luck! :goodluck:

Message: Posted by: Tercero (Aug 19, 2003 11:14AM)
Just a question!
Why do you want to perform this kind of illusion on the street?
Many of these illusions must to be done in a theater or under special conditions. If you do them on the steet, you'll probably increase the risk.
Think about that.

- Pedro III -
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Aug 19, 2003 12:51PM)
Here's my question...

do you expect to make any money performing with this stuff?

Large illusions on the street are impractical. Completely impractical.
You've got to lug them too and from.
What if a heavy rain comes in suddenly?
You're all wet.

Your act should be able to move at a moments notice.
What if the police start heckling you?

I'll have to echo the question at hand....

Robert Bloor
Message: Posted by: Paul Jester (Aug 19, 2003 05:48PM)
I've thought about doing a street illusion show too, but right now I don't have the budget for it. I'm interested in an illusion show because it is bigger than other shows, can contain far more, and is different.

For the illusions I looked at Andrew Mayne. A lot of his stuff can be adapted to play surroundable, or almost surroundable (most street stages are backed up to a wall anyway...). Lot's of illusions can also be made to pack flat, and out of water-proof materials, think plastic sheeting... like they use for signs. Also remember that small props can make big illusions, or play big, like the sword through neck.

I think it is possible to put together a very good illusion show for the street, but I don't think that some of the more classic illusions are suitable such as Zig-Zag, or ashrah which require quite a set-up. Seat-suspension is a very common illusion for such difficult enviroments. So I would tend to sway away from it and try to adapt and use other illusions.

For my show I was thinking of appearing my assistant, but I don't yet know of an easily transportable version, then a comody assistant saws magician in half (An adaptation on 2D sawing by Andrew Mayne), then a classic like the sub-trunk, and to end it something with a bit of danger, like a pellet catch from a pellet gun (I do know a perfectly safe and wonderful method) or perhaps sword through neck, I haven't really decided.

And for a little kicker, maybe the classic rabbit from the hat. I pull the rabbit out, they'll put the money in :D All of which should fit in the back of a car.

But having said that, I am not in a position where I am able to start spending so much money :bawl:

Soon... sometime soon.
Message: Posted by: RobertBloor (Aug 19, 2003 08:39PM)

A bullet catch of any kind is probably not going to fly on the street.

But you're right on a lot of points most especially that there are plenty of things that will pack small and play big.

Robert Bloor
Message: Posted by: djvirtualreality (Aug 20, 2003 05:54PM)
Andrew Mayne's touching sky is cool....His floating on the edge is an impromptu ungimmicked version of his pocket levitator. I would say that's the only lev from that booklet able to be performed on the street. Someone in another post had an idea doing that on an escalator. I love mid-air and airborne from that booklet. It's only $10.45 on penguinmagic.
Message: Posted by: Whit Haydn (Aug 20, 2003 07:15PM)
I wonder what impression a lot of expensive illusions in a street performance would make on the spectators, and how that might effect the hat.

A sleight-of-hand artist with a nice table and some expensive rings and cups can still look like a starving artist on his/her way up, one that may need support from those who "discover" him.

A performer with a truckload of illusions piled on a street corner may look more like a dispossesed loser on his way down. At a festival, or sponsered show it might be worth a try, but as a busking act in real street conditions, I am not sure it will work.

Aside from the impracticality of hauling illusions around and performing them under the stringent conditions of the street and in inclimate weather, what does it look like to the spectators and how might it effect their putting money into the basket?

Will the take justify the expense of purchase and the wear and tear on the props?

If you have a mid-sized illusion show, you might do better booking schools or four walled shows.

I used the Zig-Zag, the Sub Trunk, and the Sword Basket in the past when I had a three person illusion show in amusement parks. All of these look fine surrounded and close-up.

So I think that you could easily have a show like this that fills up a single van or SUV. It takes some heavy lifting, and a lot of time in setting up and breaking down.

Illusions tend to suffer somewhat at every move from location to location even under the best of situations. Your beautiful new Zig Zag will quickly become dinged and scratched and wobbly as you use it under outside conditions.

The sun can wreck havoc on most illusions, causing warping and cracking and other damage.

The bright sunight also eliminates many otherwise good illusions for the street such as the Dagger Box, Arrowhead, Doll House, Twister, etc.--anything that depends on black art, mirrors, or depth illusions.

If you can be working in the evening, then a trick like the Arrowhead or Dagger Box might be really practical and fun. Relatively inexpensive as well. A good wrist or head chopper might also be a good bet.
Message: Posted by: magicsoup (Sep 29, 2003 06:40PM)
The Fringe Festival in my city would be a great place to do a street illusion. I think it would make for a big ending. Personally I think one would be enough. A friend of mine did a sub trunk routine on the street and it was great! It also passed as a portable stage and his box to put all his stuf in.
Message: Posted by: Steve Dela (Oct 14, 2003 04:05PM)
For a street style illusion check out
http://www.einhorn.co.uk he sells an illusion called in flight! I don't own this but it has had amazing reviews and can be performed on the streets! http://www.Hocu-pocus.com also sell it.
hope this helps and good luck
Steve Dela
Message: Posted by: gulamerian (Oct 21, 2003 04:00PM)
Illusions on the street is a bit hard. You will want to use smaller illusions. Head chopper, Light bulbs thru Girl, Head Twister. But the real problem will be where will you keep them from prying hands when they are not being used?