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Topic: Intermediate turning beginner, personality and becoming a perfomer
Message: Posted by: pepijn (Oct 12, 2004 05:29AM)
Hi everybody

I did not have a clue where to post this, so I went for a general thread. please sombody correct me if I am wrong.

Here is my problem. I really want to start turning my magic into magic instead of doing tricks. I really think that is important as I have also read in different threads in the Café, and I was wondering what sort of material is good to develope that.

I was looking in to the three dvd set from lovell 'the methods behind the madness', but there is a lot of other very good material out there. I have been reading a lot about the cellini dvd's which to be honoust with you, sounds absolutly magnificent. no doubt about it.

But maybe you could give me some advise on what to get. At the moment I am mainly into cards but I am trying to develope some things that may be more usefull on the streets (cups&balls a little rope magic)

Thank a lot,

ps If I have missed a thread which answers this question could anybody please tell me where I can find it. Thanks a lot again
Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Oct 12, 2004 09:07AM)
I'm glad that you recognize the difference between magic and tricks. Although there is nothing wrong with performing tricks, the creation of a magical experience for the spectator is a much higher level of entertainment that will often prove to be much more memorable.

Some effects lend themselves to his higher level of magic much easier than others, but you will find in most cases, the elevation of the effect will come from your mastery in showmanship rather than any particular sleights or tricks. In that regard, I would highly recommend books such as:

1. Showmanship for Magicians (Fitzke)
2. Books of Wonder (Tommy Wonder)
3. Maximum Entertainment (Ken Weber)
4. Magic and Showmanship (?) (Henning Nelms)

As for card magic, and this is only my personal opinion, it is one of the most difficult areas to elevate into a true magical experience. This has more to do with the public perception of card magic than anything else. Almost anyone can walk into their local bookstore or library and find several books on card tricks.

The strongest close up magic that I have experienced always seems to involve ordinary items, that have been borrowed from a spectator. When this is combined with proper motivation and meaning, you will have a truly jaw droppin, wet your pants, run to the hospital moment of magic.
Message: Posted by: pepijn (Oct 12, 2004 09:47AM)
Wow, thanks for the quick reply to my post.

Can you give me a couple of examples of the effects that you mean? That would allow me to go and check those out get the generall idear of the effects that you mean.

Message: Posted by: Kent Wong (Oct 12, 2004 11:42AM)

Effects such as Michael Ammar's Bill Switch can be extremely powerful. Someone actually lends you their bill (lets assume it's a 10), and you visibly change change it to a $20. Then you change it back again before returning the bill to the spectator.

You might also try an effect called Pinnacle. You borrow a spectator's ring and have it visibly penetrate an elastic band, one strand at at time. Then you remove it the same way before giving the ring (and even the rubber band if you want) back to the spectator.

Ted Lesley also does a very nice borrowed bill to borrowed cigarette routine.

These are just some examples of effects using everyday items borrowed from the spectators. The circumstances in which you perform the effect, and the patter you use will effect the overall meaning and impact.

Hope that helps.
Message: Posted by: Matt Bartz (Oct 12, 2004 12:15PM)

The books that magicman845 recommended are all outstanding. Knowing the mechanics of a trick are important, but to really create a magical experience for a spectator---it is more about showmanship and misdirection. The books magicman recommended focus on creating that magical experience through showmanship and misdirection.

For some reason there has been a recent trend in magic that has put the focus on the mechanics of the effect and not on the spectators. Its detracting from the quality of magic that we are seeing. Instead of peforming for the spectators, some magicians are performing for themselves. However, For hundreds of years, great names in magic became great through the use of very simple effects, with an application of outstanding showmanship to those simple effects.

I would also recommend the other books in The Fitzkee Trilogy and also Strong Magic by Darwin Ortiz (Strong Magic is being re-printed next month. See http://www.geniimagazine.com No need to pay a ton on ebay unless you want a 1st ed. for some reason.)

I also agree with Magicman's idea of using objects you can borrow from spectators. But, don't just toss your cards in the trash. There are lots of guys that make wonderful magic with nothing more than a standard deck of cards, you may be one of them. For me, I'd prefer a mix of borrowed objects and cards.....I fumble too much with coins (gotta practice more).

Best of luck,
Message: Posted by: eddieloughran (Oct 12, 2004 12:28PM)
Without getting ourselves bogged down, some of the books recommended above are very old. One is cheap too, but if you are wanting performance books look to current performers. - Swiss or Burger !

Al Schneider has a free e-book on his web site which covers most of the ground.

I wouldn't recommend books like Ammars which have very good theory pieces mixed with the tricks. It proves very expensive.

I notice that the d.v.d.'s you mention are different styles of performance. Decide first off just what style you are going for !

The most important thing is you !
If they like you all else follows. Like a used car salesman - sell yourself first.

Get the spectators involved. - Holding something.
Give the magic some meaning.
Make sure they can see the climax.
Make it an impossible effect where magic is the only explanation.
Make it easy to folow. No counting or complicated moves.

You can make up any number of "rules" as above.
Think about it. What to say. How to stand. Where the props are carried. And so on.

And work on it. Perform.

Message: Posted by: Matt Bartz (Oct 12, 2004 12:39PM)
Eddie- Great points.
Al's website is: http://www.worldmagiccenter.com/
His e-book is under the link "magic theory".
Message: Posted by: Jaz (Oct 12, 2004 03:35PM)
My personal preference as a spectator is magic that is visual. The "Asher Twist" is one of these.

I've often considered what a real magic user might do in his/her [b]everyday life[/b].
What I came up with was this.
If a wizard wanted an object he would make it appear, move towards them, etc. The wizard would use this object. When done with the object the wizard would make it vanish or transform it to something else they wanted to use. There is a reason in this kind of magic.

Most of the magic we do is for no real reason except to entertain, period. They are tricks!

One idea is to make props appear, transform, move without reaching and vanish when done.
Just my thoughts.
Message: Posted by: pepijn (Oct 12, 2004 03:38PM)
This is really good for me thank you very much!, I am definitely going to think about this a lot (and get started on the book I am just busy making it availble offline (for easy reading..))

I was just wondering eddie if you say the dvd's I mentioned are different styles do you mean they are a differnent kind of perfomer in the way that one is a perfomer at parties for small crowds etc. and the other one is a street perfomer, Or do you mean that one is absolutly crackers and Cellini I am ashamed to say I have never seen a perfomance of so far,(on tape ofcourse in Holland magicians are extremly rare I believe..)

Thank you all very much and I hope to continue this thread and maybe help some others allong too

Thanks for the help so far
MagIcaL Greetings Pepijn

I like that thought Jaz. It's a completely differnt angle to work from. I don't think I have encountered that before.
I'll also think about that one, If one would like one could build their intire routine around that as you suggested. Very creative start I would say.
Oh man so much stuff to think about
(darn my physical chemistry test for tommorro I have to concentrate on that one....) better go to bed now

greetings all and see you soon
Message: Posted by: Blackwood (Oct 12, 2004 04:09PM)

I would also recommend you check out a tape/DVD from one of the Café's pros, Jon Allen, called "Spectators Don't Exist." It gives a nice set of effects that get great reaction and, better yet, get the spectators involved-- the key to truly entertaining magic.

And certainly you'll want to seek out the work of your countrymen Fred Kaps and Tommy Wonder -- two of the greatest and most "magical" of all magicians ever.
Message: Posted by: pepijn (Oct 14, 2004 09:03AM)

I am busy reading al Schneiders book which I have so far really enjoyed!

Mr. Blackwood I was wondering you wrote dvd for spectators don't exist, is it out in dvd format because so far I have only found it in video tape format and I am afraid to say that I don't have a tv/video recorder so I couldn't use it maybe you could tell me where I would be able to get a dvd version because it looked pretty promesing.
I am looking at fitzke's book and strong magic when it comes out again.
But in the beginning of the thread different effects where mentioned that gets the spectators more involveled doe you know if dvd's exist which has severall of these kind of effects on them. They don't have to be cards but ofcourse the can be?
Thanks very much
Message: Posted by: eddieloughran (Oct 15, 2004 12:49PM)
Hi again,
sorry to be so long continuing with the thread, but I've been putting in to many hours working !

Regarding my coments above on the d.v.d.'s ; what I was meaning was that Simon Lovell is a card man, working with small groups, and with a comedy aproach, where Cellini is street, working to large crowds with a parlour style. Cups and balls, misers dream, linking rings etc.
I know this is simplified but you get what I mean.
Either go for close up or street. You can't do everything at once.

I've been arguing with friends that cards do not seem like magic to many people because they know vaguely about false suffles and dealing from the bottom and other mithical card cheating techniques.
If we can't find a chosen card we shouldn't be doing magic.
Its also hard to pesent as something that can only be acheved by special powers.
" is this your card ?" "Yes" Not very exciting.

A friend has just been telling me that on Bill Malone's d.v.d.'s he says his most popular card tricks are - invisible deck, cards across, and Sam the Bellhop.
Not a find-the card there.
But in two cases the audience hold the cards, count them, or play with non existing cards. The other is a story. The audience are involved and are part of the magic.

Regarding presentation in general I think we can agree that all the moves, actions, words, and everything, we, or the assistant does is important, so, everything has to be thought out to make a stronger effect. Or the rather the strongest.

Message: Posted by: pepijn (Oct 15, 2004 05:15PM)
Thank you very much Mr. Loughran for clarifying those points, I think this is getting me to go and search for the track that is right for me,

thank you
Message: Posted by: djurmann (Jul 2, 2012 04:32PM)
On 2004-10-14 10:03, pepijn wrote:

I am busy reading al Schneiders book which I have so far really enjoyed!

Mr. Blackwood I was wondering you wrote dvd for spectators don't exist, is it out in dvd format because so far I have only found it in video tape format and I am afraid to say that I don't have a tv/video recorder so I couldn't use it maybe you could tell me where I would be able to get a dvd version because it looked pretty promesing.



Message: Posted by: pradell (Jul 3, 2012 01:48PM)
Since that was 2004 and this is 2012 the ebook by Mr. Schneider is gone from the present website. But not to worry! Go to http://archive.org/web/web.php and type in http://www.worldmagiccenter.com/ and then go to the calendar and go back to 2004 and voila! You are back at the old website, ready to find Magic Theory, locate the ebook and review it.

Message: Posted by: Octopus Sun (Jul 6, 2012 12:20AM)
People first should/must read Nevil Maskelyne's and David Devant's "Our Magic"
to find out why one should not be a clone of another Magi.

The archive's gotta kill Al Schnieder, everything he took down due to him being ****ed off because people supposedly reversed engineered his magic vids, and the rest of the stuff are all still up for grabs through archive dot org
Message: Posted by: Octopus Sun (Jul 6, 2012 01:03AM)
The Theory Of Magic
by Al Schneider
Message: Posted by: Mr. Mystoffelees (Jul 6, 2012 07:14AM)
All good suggestions. I would add "Theatrical Magic" by John Pyka...

Message: Posted by: andre combrinck (Jul 9, 2012 11:25AM)
Pep, I hope you can understand this: Tommy Wonder was die beste, ooit! Ek het nog nooit weer iemand so goed gesien nie! Go back and look at his work. He was fantastic.