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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Ever so sleightly » » For how long could I do a chop cup routine? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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C.Jakobsson
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Hi!
I thnk I'm going to buy a chop cup to develop my routine, but I wonder, how long is an average chop cup routine? Could I play it for like five minutes and keep it interesting the whole time? I think the C&B are too much to carry arounda and I want the dhop cup to play almost as good as my C&B routine... Is this possible?
Steve Dela
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I think the chop cup is amazingly over played by a lot of performers.

there is no average time realy as they vary so much.

the Great Paul Daniels' routine is about 7-10 minutes long but he manages to keep the interested with his amazing routine.

I would suggest 4 minutes but not more than 5... but it is up to you and you might be able to create a 15 minute rouitne that is realy good...it is just a case of trying it out and ask another magicians opinion when your are done.

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Pete Biro
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Find the video of Don Alan's great routine. I doubt if it even goes 2-minutes. But it KILLs.
STAY TOONED... @ www.pete-biro.com
Werner G. Seitz
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Don Alans routine= 1 min. 39 sec., which in this case is equal to a lifetime of work on it..
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

( Words of wisdom from Albert Goshman ...it paid off for him - it might
as well for YOU!!!- My own magic is styled after that motto... Smile )
rikbrooks
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My routine is 3-4 minutes, depending on audience reactions. I have a couple of phases that I could add in to make it longer, but I find that the effects of the chop cup are so amazing and so rapid fire that after a while the audience stops seeing them. For example, the first part of my routine has rapid fire the ball is put into my pocket, appears under the cup, disappears from the cup back to my pocket. Comes back to the cup but it's a surprise, a mouse or a walnut (credit to David J Greene for that). Then it's put into the cup, slowly turned over onto my palm and disappears literally a few inches from their nose.

At that point I act surprised, "Hey, did I drop it? Where is it? Oh YEAH, remember? at the start I put it into my pocket!"

I've found that about 25% of the time the spectator just says, "Yeah, you did". When that happens I take it as a signal to get to that final load, I'm stretching their ability to keep track of the ball. So from there the routine may go on for another 30 seconds up to MAYBE 2 minutes.

I think that the key is to gauge your spectator. Learn when you've gone far enough and stop there. Your routine should be constructed so that you can skip phases easily and go straight for the final load from just about anywhere.
broothal
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Any cup routine (including cups and balls) is just a byplay until the final load. The magic that happens in between is just a magical way of showing them empty. This byplay can then be more or less magical. Preferably more.

Just ask any layman who has ever seen a cup ('s and ball) routine. "It was amazing. He had these empty cups and suddenly he produced potatos and onions from them"
paymerich
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Quote:
On 2005-03-21 09:09, broothal wrote:
Any cup routine (including cups and balls) is just a byplay until the final load. The magic that happens in between is just a magical way of showing them empty. This byplay can then be more or less magical. Preferably more.

Just ask any layman who has ever seen a cup ('s and ball) routine. "It was amazing. He had these empty cups and suddenly he produced potatos and onions from them"


But isn't' that the main problem with most C&b Routines ?? Mages are in a rush to get to the final load and don't let the spectators enjoy the view along the way?
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rikbrooks
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I've heard so many times that the final load is everything. I have to disagree. I've of course performed the chop cup for my friends and family. My final load is an eyeball. They all say that the eyeball was cute but what got them was that the ball kept vanishing from my hand while they were staring right at it. That was the magic for them.

As for cups and balls, I've gotten a lot of answers, but none of them were the surprise final loads - except for the wooden egg. It looks like it can't possibly fit under the cup.
Werner G. Seitz
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Quote:
On 2005-03-21 11:39, rikbrooks wrote:
My final load is an eyeball.
Want a tiny tip ? Smile
Produce 2 eyeballs.. it's not tough at all to do 2 loads for the Chop Cup and in your case it makes even sense..ppl have 2 eyes!

Probable patter: *Oh, your eyes are almost falling out?
Here is your left eye..and here is your right..*
And you could add:
*Or is it the other way around?
Oh no..you are not crosseyed, left is left and right is right, I was correct in the first place*
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

( Words of wisdom from Albert Goshman ...it paid off for him - it might
as well for YOU!!!- My own magic is styled after that motto... Smile )
Bill Palmer
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Quote:
On 2005-03-21 09:09, broothal wrote:
Any cup routine (including cups and balls) is just a byplay until the final load. The magic that happens in between is just a magical way of showing them empty. This byplay can then be more or less magical. Preferably more.

Just ask any layman who has ever seen a cup ('s and ball) routine. "It was amazing. He had these empty cups and suddenly he produced potatos and onions from them"



That's one opinion, and it is not entirely without merit. The chop cup is a very versatile device, and it lends itself to some very magical work. The advantage of certain routines is their directness. Don Alan's routine, for example, has major impact at every point. That's why my own personal chop cup routine is almost exactly the same as Don's. The final loads are different, but the work is basically the same. But here's a big point. I did that routine for audiences of over 1000 people on a regular basis at Renaissance Festivals.

The question then, is how do you sell a routine with a little ball and a little cup to a big crowd that can barely see the little ball, if at all? Well, you borrow an idea from Leipzig, Jarrow and Alan -- you bring up a spectator and let the audience react to his reactions. They can't see the ball, but they can see and hear the spectator's reactions.

Now you bring the "play" into the routine. My patter is done completely tongue in cheek, but it's almost plausible, and I deliver it with conviction. The first appearance of the ball under the cup is a total surprise. The second is less of a surprise, but is still a surprise, nonetheless.

But the final loads are definitely the punch line -- especially the third load which is not suspected and is dropped from the cup while it is held over the table.

So, it's a collection of magical moments. I've managed to "squeeze" Don's 1 minute and 39 second routine into 4 minutes. But it's an effective four minutes, and that is what counts.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Magicbarry
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I have to agree with Rik. The final load is a great finish, but the overall routine floors 'em. The audience is trying to catch the "move" -- and there isn't a move. They gasp, they laugh ... they're incredulous. I all leads up to the final load, of course ... but the action along the way should have them jumping out of their shorts. (Figuratively speaking, of course.)

Having said that, personally, I wouldn't let a chop routine go too long. It really depends on how you're doing it -- some magicians like to do a fast paced routine, others can put on a great show with a lot of patter. As a general rule, I'd say you want to establish your effect, convince them that what you're doing is impossible ... and then, don't dwell on it. Move to the final load. You never want them thinking, "very nice -- but I've seen that one already".

In other words, think not in terms of minutes and seconds, but repetitions, and what each repetition is accomplishing. The Don Alan routine is a fine example: he introduces the final load at the right time -- just when there isn't anything more that can be done to amaze the audience with the ball-goes-from-hand/pocket-to-cup premise.

Now, you might want to go a little longer if you have multiple loads, such as with the Bannon routine ... but even the Bannon routine is relatively short. I don't think it's much longer than Alan's.
Bill Palmer
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Delmondo, let me add that if you plan to work on the chop cup, be sure to purchase a copy of Ron Bauer's book The Complete Don Alan's Chop Cup Routine. There is material in that booklet that does not exist anywhere else. It covers Don's thinking about the whole thing in detail that is not present in any of the other books about Don.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Werner G. Seitz
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Re broothals statement and what Bill Palmer answered, I have a comment.

It is correct, that it is the 'in between' that can be fun to watch and entertaining as well.

This reminds me of a statement Ken Brooke mentioned many times.

It's something along the lines, that they had to enjoy the ride to the final destination, meaning they should get and be entertained, but the finish should be a knock-out they remember.

I also still think, when ppl are refering to a C&B worker, they most likely will tell that there was this magicians who did something with some smal red balls and some cups, and then finally, and they will say this almost blow them away, the cups suddenly where filled with large fruits far too many that could be in the cups.

It's the large fruitproduction they remember, not at all what happend with and to the balls, it might be entertaining, but they can't remember what happend, the impact wasn't there even if they where entertained..they might laugh at the jokes and lines, but they soon are forgotten..unless one is an entertainer of the caliber of Gazzo..here they'll simply say, they saw a guy that was outstandingly funny and they had the ball of their lifetime and that guy also did some magictricks..

I honestly believe in what I have written above!

Now, a little story out of my own experience.
It goes over 20 years back and I just had polished the little routine with the Benson bowl I do..
Maybe I had done it for a year or so...

One evening being at a magicfriends place, there where alltogether invited around 6 guys (the magicfriend was a chef) we had some good food and later where positioned at a lowlevel couchtable and sofa.

I decided to have a go doing the Bowl routine -which actually isn't a long routine- and a spec to my left (I was almost in the middle of the group of guys, sitting at the couch alltogether, so there solely where ppl to the right and left of me, none in front, which isn't a good situation to perfom ) was involved in getting some sponges in his hands aso.

Now after being through the routine, and the final load (a Burger) was produced, a guy who normally did the C&Bs later told me, that whilst he was watching, he thought *Oh, all those re balls, what's this all about*, but he then also told me, when the final load appeared under the bowl he was shocked and almost falling off the couch..these where his words, honestly..

He had no idea what was coming, he didn't se the slightest re the final load was shoved under the Bowl, so the sudden appearance of that Burger came as a BIG surprise to him.

Now this guy was a magician friend and a C&B worker and a good one, so he well knows how to structure a routine of that type, nevertheless he got the surprise of his lifetime, simply because he didn't se it coming..

I just tell this story, to highlight, how much impact a surprisingly appearing final load can make, even to fellow magicians, so also in his case he might not exactly (even as a magician) recall what happend with the sponges, but the final load he'll never forget..
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

( Words of wisdom from Albert Goshman ...it paid off for him - it might
as well for YOU!!!- My own magic is styled after that motto... Smile )
Bill Palmer
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Regarding the maximum length of the chop cup routine -- when you see cows returning to the barn, it's time to stop.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
BarryFernelius
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Quote:
On 2005-03-20 16:41, Werner G. Seitz wrote:
Don Alans routine= 1 min. 39 sec., which in this case is equal to a lifetime of work on it..


Note, however that first 39 seconds of Don's routine is the preliminary spiel and opening remarks. Once the magic effects start, the five effects happen in about 1 minute. Don's routine is a masterpiece of economy and tight construction. It's all meat and no fat!

Even if you later develop your own chop cup routine, you should really try Don's routine a few hundred times in front of real audiences, making only the smallest changes required to fit your own personality. Don't routine has taught me a lot about timing, misdirection, and artistry.
"To achieve great things, two things are needed: a plan and not quite enough time."

-Leonard Bernstein
Werner G. Seitz
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Barry, don't forget, the effectivness of the final loads is MAINLY based and structured for a sit-down situation.
The other bíts of bizz -apart form the perfectness of the final loads- can though get incorporated/done when performing stand-up, which (undfotunately) is the performing condition we have to face in most cases these days..
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

( Words of wisdom from Albert Goshman ...it paid off for him - it might
as well for YOU!!!- My own magic is styled after that motto... Smile )
BarryFernelius
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Werner's right; the Don Alan routine was designed for a situation in which the magician is seated. I have two ways to overcome that problem in my regular work. At my dinner theatre job, customers who arrive early end up hanging around in the bar before anyone is seated in the theatre. I am able to work behind the bar, and it wasn't very hard to adapt Don's routine to this situation.

Most of my other work in the dinner theatre is done standing at people's tables. For folks who've been particularly kind to me (or, for special visitors), I can return to the table later and join the party by sitting with them. Then, I talk with them in a friendly way and perform Don Alan's routine.
"To achieve great things, two things are needed: a plan and not quite enough time."

-Leonard Bernstein
Bill Hegbli
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Paul Daniels, the english TV magician, performed the Chop Cup at Abbott's Get-Together on the evening show for an audience of about 1200 people. It went over very well. He did not have a spectator on stage, but he was very entertaining.
Bill Palmer
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The routine I did at the Renaissance Festivals is essentially the Don Alan routine. I always did this standing and worked out of my pouches.

I also do this routine standing. Because this is an open forum, I won't explain where things come from, but suffice it to say that Lynetta Welch had a lot to do with it.
"The Swatter"

Founder of CODBAMMC

My Chickasaw name is "Throws Money at Cups."

www.cupsandballsmuseum.com
Werner G. Seitz
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Quote:
On 2005-03-23 19:09, Bill Palmer wrote:
...but suffice it to say that Lynetta Welch had a lot to do with it.
I suppose one can safely say, she makes great 'holders'?, right ? Smile
Learn a few things well.....this life is not long enough to do everything.....

( Words of wisdom from Albert Goshman ...it paid off for him - it might
as well for YOU!!!- My own magic is styled after that motto... Smile )
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