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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Finger/stage manipulation » » Original Ideas for manipulation (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

EvanMagic
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Manitoba
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In a similar post, Dave Womach was giving ideas on how to produce a dove. Silk to dove, color changing dove, newspaper to dove etc. etc. What are some other ideas you have?
magic4u02
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Evan. I am not sure I fully understand your question. Sorry. Are you looking for newer and more creative alternatives for dive magic in a dove act? Something different from the norm and more creative? Or are you looking for newer and unique methods for doing what you mentioned above but without the standard gimmicks?

Kyle
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zombieboy
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I think he wants original ideas for a manipulation act. Similar to the thread on originality with doves, but on sleight of hand manipulations instead.
EvanMagic
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Like for example

Ball to silk

Ball to confetti

Silk producing any object

animal production

things done with newspapers,

etc etc.

Keeping away from gimmicks, to form a manipulation act. No box production ideas please.
magic4u02
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Aww no problem then. I like to train myself to think creatively and a creative act for the manipulator starts by taking every single manip act you have seen and toss them away. There is no reason to see others acts. Sure, use them for inspiration, but then go and explore your own creativity. If you watch too many others acts, you end up as a magic or manipulator clone and we already have much to much of that as it is.

Another important thing to remember when creating a creative manipulation act is to remember that you are NOT performing this act for yourself or for your magic buds. I have seen so many manipulators forget this important key point.

Just because you KNOW 51 ways to vanish a billard ball does not mean you need to show every single one just because you CAN. You have to remember that these are only moves and moves to be used to a greater good and that greater good is ENTERTAINMENT and the entertainment value you can give to your audiences.

To an audience, you vanish the ball you reproduce it and now you are doing it again. This is why a lot of manipulators fall victum of too much repetition in their acts. There are ways around this.

A lay audience does not see manipulative magic in the same way we do. They do not understand the techniques and skills involved and nor should they if what we are doing is supposed to be magical. With this in mind, the audience often will say to themselves... "WHY". Why is this magician doing the same thing over and over again.
Why? Because the magician knows he is doing different vanishes and each one is slightly unique. However the audience only knows that the card vanishes, the card returned and now your doing it again. This is why an act of manipulation is very hard to do well if your doing it for 7-8 mins in a normal act time. You do not want your audience ever going "Why" at any time in the routine.

So how do you work around this problem of boring your audience to tears? Well that is where research and creativity comes into the picture. It gets back to the point that in a manipulative act you must give the audience "more". It is not good enough to simply show an 8 minute act of pure skill alone doing moves that appear the same to any audience.

Sure you can do skill alone, but if you are, you better be the best out there. Why? Because behind the skill you are giving to them, what else is there for the audience to latch onto? Nothing really.

I have lectured and talked about this subject a lot in the past so I will try and post some of my notes from articles and stuff I may have talked about in the past. Forgive me if you have read this before elsewhere. It is my intentions to add to it and to shine more light on it for those who have not had the chance. I hope it is of help to some of you.

So how do you give your audience more? Well you can give them more through the use of themes, character, style, pacing, transition effects and emotional response to just name a few. Let me go on to talk very briefly about each of these I just mentioned. Each could be an article all in itself but I will just give you my tips on each one for now in hopes you can grasps what I am referring to.

- Themes: You can give more to your audience in any manipulative act if you simply add in a theme to the act you are doing. This can be a generalized theme in regards to the objects all relating that you are manipulating, or the act itself can be themed around a storyline. In this way you are performing a small 8 min play that just so happens to have magic in it. The audience can relate to the themed objects or the story and get more involved with your act and with you.

- Character: Every act you do should have a strong character present on stage. The audience needs to be able to connect with this character. If you can connect the audience with you, then they become more attached to you and can relate to what you are doing on stage. Ask yourself if your character is suave, comical, athletic, hip, sad, down on his luck. Each of these can become a strong character that can be conveyed in your stage movement and even your music.

- Style: With style, I mean the way you move on stage and the way you conduct and hold yourself throughout the act. It is something that must be learned over time. It is those little things that make a huge difference to an audience liking you or not. It can be the way you pause at the right moment and look at the audience and wink right before a big production. It could be the way you move and look and smile at the audience as if saying thank you without moving your mouth at all.

- Pacing: The way you pace and time your act can make a world of difference to an audience. In many manipulative acts, the audience is being barraged with too much visual input. They can not follow it all the time and so start shutting themselves down from even watching what it is you are doing. You must pace your act and place in it pauses that give the audience a chance to catch up, breathe a bit and give them a chance to applaude you before going into the next sequence.

- Transition effects: These are the simple things you can place into your act that changes it up a bit and ads so called "spice" to the act. It gives your audience something more to watch and breaks up the act from being too repetitive.
For example: You could be doing a billiard ball act. You do a few vanishes and produce the ball. The ball gets tossed up and as you catch it it turns into a white silk. You do a knots of silk effect and the not becomes the ball again. In this way the ball to silk becomes a transition effect that gives your audience something more to be interested in.

- Emotional Response: This is a HUGE one and can work so wonderful if done well. If done right it can make your audience connect with you long after you have left the stage. It is causing an emotional response in your audiences by allowing them to connect and relate to your character and the predicament presented on the stage. It can also work closely in with the theme you are presenting.

Every person in your audience has experienced something in common. What is common to us all is emotions. We have all felt fear, love, confusion and happiness. These are common to every person know matter who you are performing for. So if you can connect with them on one or more of these emotions, you can get that audience member to really relate to you because they are remembering a similar situation when they too had that exact same emotion or situation happen to them. they can relate.

For example, your manipulative act could be all about this guy at night who is just trying to reach a bus to get home. It is late and he misses his bus and the entire world seems to be passing him buy. He sits on a bench to wait for the next bus and turns on his radio. He drifts off to sleep only to awake moments later. He realizes that magic starts happening to him even though he does not know exactly why it is. Through out the act the magic that happens to him causes him to smile and to realize that life is full of wonder even if we may not always see it.

Another example of using the above for a manipulative act is as follows: A kid is told to go up to the attic and clean it out and to not get into his grandfathers old stuff. This is heard by a voice over before the curtains open. The kid stumbles out and is seen dusting off stuff. He bumps into a table and a poster unravles to show that is grandfather was one of the best jazz artists of his time. Fascinated by this the kid looks both ways before opening this chest. As the chest opens a light shines from within it and jazz music slowly starts to play. He closes it scared but curiosity overcomes him and he opens it wide.

He picks up the baton that used to be his grandpas and starts to play around with it. Suddenly is vanishes on him and he has no idea where it went. It reappears to his delight. This happens several times before he tosses it aside. He pulls out a book that says sheet music and when the book is opened new jazz music plays. As he changes to a new page, the music changes with it. He closes the book but hears a single note playing by itself. What the heck.. he thinks to himself. He sees a note on the front of the book that is white on a black background. He plucks the bottom ball of the note from the book and covers his hand over it as the note gets muffled.

Now this opens him up to not just billiard ball manipulation, but to the actual manipulation of musical notes. Everytime the ball vanishes so does that musical sound. When a new ball comes into picture, that is a different note and gets manipulated. In the end he appears all 8 notes which just so happen to make up the full notes on a musical scale.

Now these are just some very vague examples but you can see how the entire act could be a manipulative routine but now you are relating to them a story of a very well defined character with a well defined theme. You give them an emotional response to the act because most can relate to being in a similar situation in their own life. In this way they relate better to what you are doing on stage.

Now these ideas are not meant to be the bible for a great act by any means. They are simply some of my own understandings on what I have experienced that has really worked not only for myself but to other acts that have really "made it." They are meant only to be reviewed and given some thought to. Take even one thing from them and I think you will see your act reaching your audiences in a whole different light.

Enjoy these thoughts and please let me know your own ideas.

Kyle
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EvanMagic
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I am speechless with your professional advice. I really learned a lot. I can't thank you enough, and thanks for being a part of the Café!!!!

Evan
magic4u02
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Evan:
You are most welcome my friend. I should thank you for posting the question. It is people like yourself who open up and ask the right questions because they have a desire to really learn and create interesting magic and to create magic that is a part of themselves. So I just thank you for posting the question and allowing me to share some ideas locked up in this crazy head of mine. hehe

I hope it sparks some ideas of your own and gets others thinking how they can take their manipulative magic to an entirely new level of thinking. I would love to hear others ideas on this topic as well.

PS: I wqill be up attending SAM in Boston this coming week. If you or anyone else is up there, please do not hesitate to stop me in the halls and say hello. I would love to meet some of you and share ideas with you or even a simple handshake.

Kyle
Kyle Peron

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