(Close Window)
Topic: Some thoughts on nervousness
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 01:20AM)
I’m posting this here with the idea that it may help a fellow newcomer or that some with more experience can chime in and expand upon these ideas. I don’t want to come off as trying to sound too deep or all-knowing here, but these were some interesting thoughts I had following a gig last weekend.
I was thinking about nervousness the other night after the gig. I hadn’t performed in a particular setting in quite a while; this was a house party, and I was also doing some new material I’d been wanting to do for a long time so I was nervous before the gig.
I was running the evening’s events through my mind afterward and hit upon some ideas that lean toward the psychological and wanted to share them. I don’t often start a new thread giving suggestions like this, but here goes...

When I was nervous the other night I went in to the gig and began setting up and introducing myself, the normal routine. And I also told the people- in a lighthearted way and with a smile on my face- that I was nervous that night. Let me just repeat that- I told them I was really nervous.

Some important things happened in that moment.

1. I was TALKING WITH PURPOSE. That chit chat and small talk I was making was taking my mind off of my nervousness. This wasn’t mindless jibber jabber, but a conversation that I was controlling as the evening’s hired, professional entertainer. I was able to follow up my statement of being nervous with some lighthearted, valid, and not so valid, reasons why. One reason I gave was because the man who’s birthday party I was performing at was a magic hobbiest and I had been told by his daughter to, “Bring my best tricks!” While this wasn’t exactly a true source of my nerves, like any script it gave me something to talk about and find out where people stood. I unconsciously lobbed a ball into their court and got to see what they did with it. It was helping to set the scene and put me in a place of psychological audience management. I was taking a leadership role in engaging these people with polite small talk, but I was also directing the flow of what we were talking about. This purposefulness helped to direct my mind to being in charge and being a doer. I was now a person taking action in the smallest of ways by talking and that was guiding me toward leadership in the events to come in a short while- magical entertainment.

2. I ADMITTED MY NERVOUSNESS. This may sound trifling and unimportant, but stick with me for a minute here and listen to the psychology behind my thoughts. When we are nervous and getting ready to perform something- anything- singing, playing an instrument, doing a magic set; we are HIDING something. Or at the very least we are doing our best to hide something from other people. The fear that makes us nervous has power over us because we are trying to keep it a secret. Not only are we concerned with doing the trick right, but “never let them see you sweat,” to quote the popular ad. The moment I admitted my nervousness to the people I was trying to hide it from, it became FAR less of an issue because of two main reasons. 1. It was all out in the open now. It was no longer a burden I was trying to conceal. I could lay that down and move easier without the weight of trying to conceal it weighing me down. And 2. the way the people reacted. Which brings me to point three of the outline:

3. THE WAY THE PEOPLE REACTED. :) People for the most part want you to succeed, especially when they are hiring you for an event. They want you to be a great entertainer so they can have fun that evening. Sure, you will run into jerks that want to see you crash and burn, but for the most part people want you to do well. When I admitted my nerves to this group of nice people they were immediately able to RELATE to how I felt; and therefore, to ME. Who hasn’t been nervous? And they unconsciously did what most people will do in their situation who are nice and want to see you do well: They began to try and put me at ease. People will say things like, “Oh don’t worry about it,” or, “We’re easy to fool.” You get the picture here; they will try and let you know that everything’s going to be okay. This is especially true if you’ve introduced yourself right off the bat as a likable person with a nice personality. They will welcome you as part of their social group because this is what humans do- the decent ones anyway.

So the gig went great. I did 90 minutes in these people’s dining room and no one got bored or even left to get a drink or use the restroom. They were bummed when it was over because time went by so fast. Part of this is skill and practice- doing the tricks right and being a PERFORMER... a MAGICIAN. But I also think part of the group acceptance involved in performing is just being real and maybe sometimes admitting your fears to people. Relax! Show them the real you! Don't let your desire to be great override the opportunity to connect with people. They will welcome you as a peer and you won’t have to carry the hidden burden of nervousness. As much! :)

Then you can blow their minds with awesome magic and mentalism!

Just some thoughts. Maybe it’s old news or doesn’t apply to you. If you get something out of this then I achieved what I set out to do by sharing it with you all.

Theodore-

:hotcoffee:
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 01:36AM)
There's only room for one Master in his Kingdom, Theodore...and that's you my friend ;) Great job! Unknowingly played those folks like a fiddle...all while keeping your own nerves in check! :p
Message: Posted by: 1KJ (Dec 1, 2014 01:39AM)
Theodore,

thanks for sharing. Good stuff!

What did they say when you said you were nervous because it was for an amateur magician who wanted to see your "best stuff"?

KJ
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 01:42AM)
Great comments Mike! :lol:

It was definitely UNKNOWINGLY, which is why I enjoyed the revelations I was having about it later. Thanks again for the comments and I'm glad I shared it. Somebody gets it!

:thumbsup:
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 01:50AM)
1KJ- Oh something along the lines of, "Don't worry we're easy to fool." But he was VERY excited to have been surprised with a Magician and afterward when we were chatting for a bit he said that it was a pleasure to be ENTERTAINED by me because even if he knew a particular method he got to see a different and fun presentation. He said it was very obvious that I spent many hours practicing. Which I do. I love to practice. Nerd alert! :cool:

Funny side note- One of the things he said he'd never seen before that blew his mind; something I do at every party that gets GASPS, was Crazy cube. :wow: So it's kind of funny that he had never seen it as an amateur Magi and got to enjoy such a cheap simple trick. With good presentation this trick kills!
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 02:16AM)
You're the man, Theodore!
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 03:16AM)
Thanks Mike, and in all the excitement I forgot to thank you; 1KJ, for your kind words. So, thank you!

:goof:
Message: Posted by: Shadowstalker (Dec 1, 2014 04:41AM)
I subscribed to this.
BTW if you admit you are nervous to hecklers won't they give you a hard time?
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 04:48AM)
It's a possibility Shadowstalker, but there are two things to consider.
#1. You generally aren't going to know who the hecklers are until they start doing there job...some time during the show.
#2. Telling folks you are nervous may actually help hinder the hecklers from coming to work that day on account that everyone already knows, and they will be there pulling for you; thus most likely keeping said heckler at bay.

In the end I think a lot more good can come from telling them than bad.
Message: Posted by: Terrible Wizard (Dec 1, 2014 05:56AM)
Nice post. It'll be interesting to see what others say regarding it, especially being upfront about nerves - which kind of flies in the face of a lot of advice (thinking Maximum Entertainment and the magician as superman).
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 06:02AM)
It's a delicate balance; Playing the part of a flawless superhero while you know you're simply a mere mortal...ah, the conflict intensifies.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 06:40AM)
Thanks for the kind comments.

I'm interested to hear others comments as well, Terrible Wizard. Was this possibly a one in a million situation that I just happened to "luck out" on in my unconscious assessment of people? Maybe, but I hope not.

I think you could open yourself up to abuse this way Shadowstalker, but again it probably depends in large part upon how you carry yourself, how professional you are, how GOOD of a Magician you really are, etc. Keep in mind that I used it as a conversation starter, I have performing experience and once I got into the flow of the show I was far from nervous. I remember once I told a friend I was showing a trick to that I was nervous and he said, "Good, you're supposed to be." Different situation, less mercy, but he was still pulling for me and as a fellow musician who performs regularly he knew that learning to deal with the jitters would be good for me.

I like to think the best of people and I think for the most part if you are open with them they will react favorably. If a trembling newbie is up front about being nervous, but performs those few tricks they know very well then I can see the "honest" approach actually helping them.

I like what Mike said about it being a delicate balance. The conflict is definitely intensifying!

:hotcoffee:
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 06:45AM)
Agreed. I think you could write it off as somewhat of a "happy mistake." You know how it could potentially work for you, so you use this information to your favor. It would be interesting to see how this theory progresses as you use it more...then you could observe the differences (if any) in the spectators' mannerisms.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 06:52AM)
I could also see where someone with less experience could say something like, "Boy I'm really nervous about doing this well for you. I'm fairly new at performing magic and really want you to be entertained by this cool mystery I'm about to share with you."

Then your chatting, starting to go into the effect, getting them to sympathize with you and beginning to feel relaxed all in a very short time and they are beginning to relate to you. Then you show them the magic and melt their face off. Or something equally cool sounding and worthy of ad copy. :smoke:


Oh snap! :coolspot:
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 07:05AM)
Absolutely! If they feel relaxed it will help you feel relaxed. You're taking them for the ride anyway...might as well jump in the car together!
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 02:14PM)
So I gave this some more thought last night.

In the Tommy Wonder lecture posted on the Café recently he shared a torn and restored that ends in a somewhat funny manner that isn't very magical. He makes the point that this is a good thing because it makes you look more human in the eyes of the audience. Like, "Hey, I'm just like you and sometimes my methods aren't that magical."

Bill Malone uses his humor to bring himself down a notch or two in the eyes of his audience as well. Like when he patters about going to Walmart to buy a wig like this, and points to his own hair. Or when he does something like, "Now, it's time for a miracle!" and pretends to do a card spread on his arm that the audience can't even see. Using humor, he makes himself more relatable in the eyes of his audience by taking himself down a notch.

I believe offhandedly mentioning nervousness and being able to chuckle about it with your audience works the same way. You remove the cape of the magic superman and show a little bit of Clark Kent to the audience and this really puts them at ease and changes their frame of mind toward you.

And what is it we're saying when we tell someone we are nervous about performing for them? You are saying, "I care." I have put a lot of thought and work into this and want you to enjoy it, not just for the sake of sparing myself embarrassment, but I want you to enjoy yourself. If you aren't nervous, you don't care, as a general rule. There will be times that you aren't very nervous after you have done something many times, but then you are in a different frame of mind. You are experienced. You still care.

The audience can then reply in kind by saying, "Relax, it's okay, don't worry about it." Which is another way of them saying, "We care too." This is creating a bond. You are now in this together, working toward a goal of enjoyment as a social group that has a connection.

Maybe a lot of thought for a brief moment, but I believe it is worthy of consideration.

:hotcoffee:
Message: Posted by: 1KJ (Dec 1, 2014 06:40PM)
Excellent comments! I wouldn't put myself as a professional magician because I have a day job, but I do a few shows, and I probably enjoy watching magic as much or more than most laypeople even though I probably know how every single effect is done. As you said, it is in seeing the nuances of how others perform, how they structure their routines, how they make them their own. I always learn at least one thing from watching another magician.

I think that focusing on the entertainment value of magic as much as the magic itself goes a long way toward eliminating the nerves.

If you are ready and willing to entertain and you are a pretty decent technician, then most people will enjoy it.

Some people won't enjoy it no matter what you do, just don't focus on them.

KJ
Message: Posted by: 1KJ (Dec 1, 2014 06:41PM)
BTW, if you don't mind, could you tell us a little bit about your presentation for crazy cube?

If you'd rather not, I understand.

KJ
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 07:15PM)
I'd be more than happy to share 1KJ!

Well, most of the presentation is a serious lesson in acting. :bg:

I might intro it as an experiment in mind reading. Sometimes I say, "And now for something a little scary," while pulling out the prop. This generates instant interest.

But, I have them examine the prop, the small cylinder, choose the number, turn my back, etc. I make sure they somehow quietly make sure that everyone knows the chosen number either by show of the die or fingers. I don't let them examine the second cylinder until I turn back around- almost as an afterthought, like I forgot- no chance of them putting the small one inside it until then!

I shake the small cylinder when I turn back around and tell them I just needed to check and make sure they put the die in there since some people want to play, "Mess with the Magician." Always gets a laugh and spectators feel free to make funny comments here as well.

I show the the top and the bottom of the closed cylinder again to "reinforce" that there's no way I could possibly see through the cylinder or lid. :) Of course, this is when "you know what" happens. Then it goes into the larger cylinder.

Then, when it comes time for the real work, the serious mind reading experiment, I ask the one who chose the number to hold the prop with both of their hands closed around it, hiding it. I ask them to close their eyes. I ask them to keep them closed long enough for me to take at least one or two of their wallets- gets a laugh and puts them off guard.

Then the seriousness begins. I have them all close their eyes, maybe even hold hands or touch the person next to them. I replay the process we have gone through in a quiet, serious voice while asking them all to visualize it in their minds, to think about and concentrate on their number. I speak slowly and include dramatic pauses.

My actual script for the reveal goes something like this: "Think about what we've done... Concentrate on the number you chose... You've chosen a number on a die... My back was turned... You put it into a small cylinder that no one can possibly see through... It now rests inside another cylinder hidden in your hands... There's no way I can see the number.. There's no way I could possibly know the number... you chose........ is three. :wow: -Or whatever it actually was.

I never fail, EVER, to hear women audibly GASP at this trick. It is awesome! Blows the men away to. This trick actually scares some people. LOTS of fun and mileage out of such a little thing.

:die:
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 07:48PM)
I think you are spot on Theodore. More important than the routine you are presenting, or even being a good performer, is your likeability. If people think you are a pompous ass who is there to deceive and gloat, it's probably not gonna end very well for you. If they see that you are not only a real person, but a person they could see inviting to the next BBQ, you're golden regardless. Loving this thread, Sir. Great stuff!
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 1, 2014 08:11PM)
Thanks Mike. I thought about sharing these thoughts for a couple of days before I did. Sometimes you just wonder how things will be received here at the Café. :worry:

I'm glad I decided to roll the dice and go for it. I'm really benefiting from organizing my thoughts in writing and it seems to be a positive contribution to the community. :)

:dice:
Message: Posted by: Mike Gilbert (Dec 1, 2014 08:19PM)
Absolutely. Don't be afraid to be you! If someone has a problem with it, it's because they have a problem with themselves. You're good to go my friend ;)
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Dec 7, 2014 07:10AM)
This thread has warmed my heart. So much.

I was taught early on that the best cure for stage fright is admitting it. And it does make you more human to your audience, because they can't help but sympathize; if they were up there, they'd probably be nervous too. Even Johnny Carson had stage fright on many occasions on the Tonight Show, and he was performing before thousands, many years before I was even born. When I found that out it helped a lot.

What finally got me over a lot of my own nervousness in performing was when I asked my mentor, who had 25 years on me as a magician, how he had overcome his nervousness in performing for crowds of strangers.

His reply? "What are you talking about? I still get the shakes every time I go on! You just gotta work through it!"

Hearing this from a man I regard as a master of the craft fixed a lot of my own problems in coming out of my shell in front of people. My superman had admitted to being human, and had told me that I was allowed to be human, as well.

Thanks for an excellent thread, guys!
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 7, 2014 09:24AM)
Welcome to the Café Mortimer! I'm glad you're enjoying the thread! :welcome:

:hotcoffee:
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Dec 7, 2014 09:47AM)
I appreciate it!

I've run across this place several times in the past, and I know that a lot of my friends are longtime members, but I never thought to actually sign up. I guess I got over feeling like I had nothing to contribute.

You might say I've overcome my stage fright. XD
Message: Posted by: quietriot (Dec 11, 2014 12:50AM)
Examining your show after it is done, is one of the most useful things you can ever do as an entertainer. And if you see yourself as a magician, and not an entertainer, stop reading here. I can't teach you a thing.

But otherwise, replay what you did, and your audience's reaction to whatever happened. What worked, and what didn't is important to note.

But to understand why one thing worked and another did not, takes insight and thoughtfulness, and experience in dealing with people.

David
Message: Posted by: Pepsi Twist (Dec 12, 2014 05:51AM)
Great thread! I just wanted to add that one thing I find useful to overcoming nervousness is to just stop and take a few breaths, even in the middle of a trick! A lot of people when nervous start rushing to get the trick over with, which obviously does a lot more harm than good, so taking a moment just to show that you can and there's nothing going wrong and to relax a bit helps me a great deal.
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Dec 12, 2014 06:23AM)
That's actually really good advice. I've known lots of guys who were excellent at magic, but always seemed a bit rushed.

You have to at least give the audience time to realize what's happening, and being relaxed and taking your time is important.
Message: Posted by: Dick Oslund (Dec 12, 2014 10:01AM)
Very interesting thread!

The great Howard THURSTON, would stand backstage just before the curtain opened. The pit band was playing the overture. Thurston would jump up (and down, too! repeating to himself: "I love this audience!" Of course, the show was well rehearsed, but this action got his heart pumping a bit faster, and when that proscenium rose, he was READY!

Occasionally, I would be booked in a high school, where, when I entered the school, I could feel the tension. There was some sort of local problem, and, I knew immediately that I would have a challenge in getting the audience "with" me. To get myself "psyched up", I would use Thurston's technique. It really helped! (psychology "works"!

Mike Caldwell was a very funny comedy magician. Well, he only did one trick! --but he killed with it.

Mike weighed over 300 lbs. He broke in, as a kid, in outdoor show business. I remember a picture of him juggling while balancing on a slack wire. I slso remember him, absolutely destroying an audience at Abbott's, years ago. He had gotten a kid up to help with his trick. The kid was really hyperkinetic! The kid was all over the stage! Mike handled the situation, and never used a stock "heckler" line! It was a real lesson in showmanship and presentation. But, here's the reason that I write this:

When introduced, Mike would come on, looking nervous. He would immediately tell the audience that he was, "so nervous, I could just FLIP!" --AND HE DID! He had had acrobatic training as a youth, and he did a "flip". His WHOLE BODY REVOLVED IN THE AIR, AND HE FELL FLAT ON HIS BACK! The audience screamed! Mike would stand up, brush himself off, and say, "I feel better now!" The laugh could be heard outside on the street!!!

He now "had" the audience! He would start with several gags, and the act would be moving! Before the act, he had stooged a man to come in late and seat himself in a front row seat. The audience, naturally, saw the man's late entrance.

Mike would stop, look at the man, as he got seated, and say to him: "You missed my opening! AND, HE WOULD REPEAT THE FLIP! (It's the performer, not the prop!!!) Nobody slept when Mike was working!

Mike's trick was a "version" of the old "sun and moon" handkerchief with a borrowd gentleman's handkerchief. It was full of laughs. His flip on entering, got the audience with him. --and, he never lost them!

His "nervous" entrance, of course, was calculated to grab the audience. His actual act had been done for years. He was totally comfortable with it.

Brother Lawton (go back up and read his OP) said that he decided to try a bit of psychology, and, it worked.

IMHO, In presenting a magic show, "we" use 5% esoteric science principles, 5% sensory illusions, 5% sleight of hand skills, and 85% PSYCHOLOGY!
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Dec 12, 2014 12:23PM)
Oddly enough, the principle of "energized enthusiasm" is recorded historically as an "occult" principle necessary for the success of any magical working. And I don't mean just in magic as a "performance art".

Before I'd ever even learned or performed a single magic trick, or even considered magical entertainment as a hobby or career option, I read about it in an essay titled (of course) [i]Energized Enthusiasm[/i], by the famous (or infamous, depending on your perspective) Edward Alexander "Aleister" Crowley. The entire essay was about how to cause people to be enthusiastic about things, an important part of what we do, if we stop and think about it, I believe.

As evil and awful as many people have made him out to be, he actually really knew his stuff (if you can sort through all of his egomaniacal ravings without going insane and sort out the good bits) when it came to the use of practical psychology, and he even thoroughly understood what in his time could be considered the cutting-edge principles of magic and mentalism.

He even advocated methods of developing characters, or personas, for various purposes (such as overcoming introversion and other hindrances to popular success), the use of acting and other theatrical techniques in shaping ordinary (perceived) reality, and was reputedly a master of disguise, as well. He even used the old trick of playing multiple games of chess with great success (it was one of his signature effects, so to speak), and was regarded as a chess master as a result. By real, acknowledged chess masters, no less.

And he did it all in the guise of an occultist. Everything he wrote, even his poetry (some of which was quite "filthy", even by modern standards), was cloaked in occult terminology, with all of the true meanings (with rare exceptions) veiled behind the trappings of black magic, kabbalism, and related arts.

Talk about living your roles! And talk about nerve! XD

Though now long-dead, he was a shining example (at least to me) of boldness in action, and taught me more about overcoming nervousness and fear of embarrassment in public performance than just about anyone. For all of his very real flaws and weaknesses and later regrets in life, he at least understood the importance of being able to get people excited and enthusiastic about things.

I'm not saying anyone should set out to emulate him as a person, or try to live his lifestyle, or do any of the freaky stuff he did, I just think he was an interesting person in this regard.
Message: Posted by: Shadowstalker (Dec 12, 2014 02:03PM)
What I realised is that I am only nervous before and during the first trick, after that I calm down and I only get "the shakes" if trying new material.
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Dec 12, 2014 03:30PM)
Oh, I'm always nervous about new stuff. Once I've tried it successfully on every kind of person, and learned how to deal with all of the little hangups that might arise (call it "debugging" if you will), it's smooth sailing. I always tend to open with stuff I know is strong and that I can do well, for just that reason.

If it's something new, I ask them if they want to see something I'm still working on. They usually say yes. But that's almost always after the main show, when they want more. They already like me then, and it goes better.

It's much easier to be confident if you know you're going to knock their socks off right off the bat. I always open with my good stuff.

And yeah, once I know they're on my side, that's it. It's on.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 12, 2014 07:12PM)
Ditto! Open with the ones you are best at. Then, even if you royally mess up they still like you and you can either recover or laugh it off.

Having said that, however...

I always open my table hopping with chop cup, but not until after I introduce myself and build a brief rapport. One time I totally blew it with the chop cup, my opener, everybody cracked up because we were already having fun and it had to look funny- here's this guy calling himself a magician totally screwing up. During the laughter I was able to recover and still blow their minds with the final loads. I think they even thought it was supposed to go that way! The things you learn in the trenches!
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 12, 2014 07:22PM)
[quote]On Dec 12, 2014, Dick Oslund wrote:
Very interesting thread!

The great Howard THURSTON, would stand backstage just before the curtain opened. The pit band was playing the overture. Thurston would jump up (and down, too! repeating to himself: "I love this audience!" Of course, the show was well rehearsed, but this action got his heart pumping a bit faster, and when that proscenium rose, he was READY!

Occasionally, I would be booked in a high school, where, when I entered the school, I could feel the tension. There was some sort of local problem, and, I knew immediately that I would have a challenge in getting the audience "with" me. To get myself "psyched up", I would use Thurston's technique. It really helped! (psychology "works"!

Mike Caldwell was a very funny comedy magician. Well, he only did one trick! --but he killed with it.

Mike weighed over 300 lbs. He broke in, as a kid, in outdoor show business. I remember a picture of him juggling while balancing on a slack wire. I slso remember him, absolutely destroying an audience at Abbott's, years ago. He had gotten a kid up to help with his trick. The kid was really hyperkinetic! The kid was all over the stage! Mike handled the situation, and never used a stock "heckler" line! It was a real lesson in showmanship and presentation. But, here's the reason that I write this:

When introduced, Mike would come on, looking nervous. He would immediately tell the audience that he was, "so nervous, I could just FLIP!" --AND HE DID! He had had acrobatic training as a youth, and he did a "flip". His WHOLE BODY REVOLVED IN THE AIR, AND HE FELL FLAT ON HIS BACK! The audience screamed! Mike would stand up, brush himself off, and say, "I feel better now!" The laugh could be heard outside on the street!!!

He now "had" the audience! He would start with several gags, and the act would be moving! Before the act, he had stooged a man to come in late and seat himself in a front row seat. The audience, naturally, saw the man's late entrance.

Mike would stop, look at the man, as he got seated, and say to him: "You missed my opening! AND, HE WOULD REPEAT THE FLIP! (It's the performer, not the prop!!!) Nobody slept when Mike was working!

Mike's trick was a "version" of the old "sun and moon" handkerchief with a borrowd gentleman's handkerchief. It was full of laughs. His flip on entering, got the audience with him. --and, he never lost them!

His "nervous" entrance, of course, was calculated to grab the audience. His actual act had been done for years. He was totally comfortable with it.

Brother Lawton (go back up and read his OP) said that he decided to try a bit of psychology, and, it worked.

IMHO, In presenting a magic show, "we" use 5% esoteric science principles, 5% sensory illusions, 5% sleight of hand skills, and 85% PSYCHOLOGY! [/quote]

I swear Dick, your book must be at least 1000 pages long with all the stories you have! I know I'm going to love it. I'm jealous of all the great things you got to experience in magic! I would've loved to have seen Mike's act.


:hotcoffee:
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Dec 13, 2014 06:46AM)
Some good lines for when you mess up or drop something:

"That's the first time that ever happened again!"

"It's all part of the act; the part I didn't rehearse!"

"There's magic in my blood, it just hasn't reached my fingers yet!"

"Now that you know the secret, I'm afraid I'll have to kill you."

"The guy who sold it to me said it worked every time... (pout) I'll bet he was lying about the magic beans, too!"

When something falls on the floor: "Oh, that's the floor show!"

Just laugh it off and move on, yeah. XD
Message: Posted by: 1KJ (Dec 16, 2014 10:24PM)
Theodore,

Thank you for sharing your routine! It sounds like a real entertainer!

KJ
Message: Posted by: 1KJ (Dec 16, 2014 10:33PM)
BTW, Theodore, I bet most people (myself included) would never have thought of using Crazy Dice for a "professional" performance. It just goes to show the value in your entertainment ability and your creativity.

While we are on the subject of Crazy Die... I'm wondering if anyone has ever seen Crazy Die props large enough to fit a "Die-Namic" die. I just love the Die-Namic die routine.

KJ
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 17, 2014 02:53AM)
I think it would be cool to make a larger Crazy Cube prop. I guess no one has considered it worthwhile since it's a "kids" magic trick.

I know Christopher Lyle uses it professionally. I'd love to hear his work on it.

And thanks for adding Die Namic to my wish list!

:lol:
Message: Posted by: Mortimer Graves (Dec 17, 2014 06:27PM)
You could use a well-contrasted foam or even fuzzy die (the ones people hang from their rear-view mirrors), and a couple of differently-sized coffee cans (the ones with the plastic lids...).

As long as it functions correctly, you can qualify the prop through presentation. Even the ordinariness of the props used can make it all the more entertaining and convincing.

There are a lot of options when it comes to adapting close-up magic to the stage. And a lot of them don't even really cost anything.
Message: Posted by: Christopher Lyle (Dec 17, 2014 11:08PM)
I use the original crazy cube as it has been sold. My routine will likely appear in my next book. Stay tuned.
Message: Posted by: Theodore Lawton (Dec 18, 2014 01:20AM)
I look forward to it!