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Topic: I saw their faces; now I'm a believer
Message: Posted by: rsylvester (Sep 18, 2011 01:55PM)
As some of my friends here know, I've gotten back into magic this year after an extended absence, so I know just enough to be terrified of children's shows. As I prepared to do my first all-kids' show in a very long time, I spent a lot of time reading past posts in this forum to prepare, staying up until 2 a.m. one evening.

For newcomers, use the indexes: you'll find a ton of useful material, especially on audience management. That's what I was most interested in: I had nightmares of unruly children.

Bottom line: the show just killed. I left feeling energized, happy and having that rewarding feeling that I made life happier for a few minutes for about 30 youngsters, and a few adults.

Experiences handled with help of my fellow Café members:

I opened with a color-changing cane. I have always debated whether to use this, but my 12yo says "do that. It's great." When putting together children's shows, I listen to my children. This audience was ages 4-10. When I brought out the cane, some kid yelled "I've seen that before." Followed Café advice and ignored him. It changed from black to red. Same kid (loudly): "How did you do *that*?" Guess he hadn't seen that before. Changed it to a silk. He was the skeptic and (following further suggestions here), I included him in the show. I do a rope routine (Fiber Optics), which had them all laughing. I brought "talking boy" up and did a cut and restored, where I did the old slip not, but wrapped the rope around his hand. I said stay still. He was so scared and stood so still it tickled the other kids while I went to get a magic wand off my table. I let him wave the wand and "restore" the rope. We were friends the rest of the show.

I like to have kids come up throughout and wave wands, or help with the "magic." Another basic, but one I am honing from reading threads of discussions here.

Those are just a couple of examples. But it's my way of saying "thanks." After reading old threads here, and looking through the indexes (thanks for that), I went into this show much more confidently. And all that advice? It works.

I am just so psyched I had to share.

Warning: This topic may have been discussed before. :)
Message: Posted by: Alan Munro (Sep 18, 2011 04:51PM)
I have to chuckle when a kid says he's seen it before. I get that when I bring out a deck of cards! I should tell him that he's a little young to "know it all". He'll think he knows it all when he's a teenager.... and still be wrong.
Message: Posted by: jimhlou (Sep 18, 2011 07:09PM)
You sound like a good candidate for the next KIDABRA convention.

Message: Posted by: Leland (Sep 19, 2011 07:12AM)
I've been lurking around here a few years and I still come here for advice and ideas.

This place is full of it!
Message: Posted by: danfreed (Sep 19, 2011 11:45AM)
Yes, and besides good ideas, its good for moral support. It's good to talk with like minded people.
Message: Posted by: magicgeorge (Sep 19, 2011 11:49AM)
On 2011-09-19 08:12, Leland wrote:
This place is full of it!

It certainly is.
Message: Posted by: Michael238 (Sep 19, 2011 10:28PM)
I too have learned a ton here
Message: Posted by: hugmagic (Sep 20, 2011 07:28AM)
A couple more great sources for getting ideas for show. Kid Stuff 5 by Frances Marshall is a great resource listing the program of many magicians over the years. It give some routines but it gets you thinking about what might or might not fit.

The "Bobo Magic Show" is also a great book on doing school and kid shows.