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phaddad2
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170 Posts

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I did my first show for a paying crowd about 10 years ago and I was awful. I thought I could just adapt my close up work to fit a larger crowd but was dead wrong. At the time I recieved 50 dollars for the show at a church womens group function and felt so guilty after the show that I went back 5 years in a row for free. That being said what I did learn was that I needed to prepare better and that I have done. I wish I had done a better job but the experiance was invaluable. I now feel that I give a good show for a fair price and am very busy. NOTHING gets in to my act now unless it is worked to perfection.(or as close as I can come to it).

Good Luck I hope your show goes well.

Pete H.
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
6018 Posts

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Well how did it go?
Dennis Michael
Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
6018 Posts

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Sleight King,

My question above is is not meant to be negative. Can we all learn from your experience? We all know the first show like this can't be perfect, however we all can learn from you. Would you mine sharing this experince with us? Only good can come from it!
Dennis Michael
sleight king
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Hi Dennis - thanks for the concern. Man, it went not great. I ended up performing for children in wheelchairs who could not respond or react. Because of this I got a little anxious, rushed my act by a lot, and well it was just poor. I got a lot of advice from my mates in magic which I feel I should pass on to people in my situation. Use music to break things up. Slow down, and the magic is not the most important bits - it is the other parts of business and humour. Oh, and choose your bookings carefully. I need to practice more ... a lot more.
Billy Bo
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Not to sound cocky in any way but.......they told you so
Jim Snack
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Bits of business are the little things that make your act. They are the things you do as you get to the trick, and getting there is all the fun - for you and the audience. The creative part of magic is creating your own bits, and that takes time, in rehearsal, but more importantly, in front of audiences to see if they work and to polish them to perfection. You can use other people's bits, but then you are just a hack, or worse, a thief. If you have to ask others for your bits, then you are not doing the work that comes with creating an act.

Jim
Jim Snack

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Dennis Michael
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Southern, NJ
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Thanks for the reply.

I too, got the surprise of my life when I took on a Muscular Dystropy group, in my youth, but mine had a memomerable ending. (I got a child to speak out for the first time in six years!) From my perspective it was bad, from the booking agent it was great.

I am really glad you learned from this. Silly Billy's book "Seriously Silly" has some really good information. His "Crystal Tube" routine is worthy of doing but do it as a learning routine. Understand why it works. Take it apart and look closely at each individual component. It's a formula for any effect.

You said it clearly, "...magic is not the most important bits it is the other parts of business and humour." There is no better truth than this.

Here are some tips.

Music: It is the emotional impact and gap filler making a weak routine so much more. Duane Laflin demonstrated this by saying the "Old McDonald has a Farm" verse. He first did it dry. Then he added some props, an elvis hair piece, a scarf, and then said it to the tune of "Love me Tender" He got a standing ovation. The point was powerfully clear. Music enhances your show.

Every trick has a beginning and an end. It is the props, backdrop, lighting, sound music, comedy, audience interaction/participation, comedy lines and inter play sandwiched inbetween that makes an otherwise flat routine powerful.

Buy and use the Vanishing Bandana. It is no effort to learn, it is all on a tape/cd, and all you have to do is make faces to what is asked. Your "hamming it up" makes or breaks the laughter. It is packaged humor. No memoriztion on your part. See the value of this routine. Feel it in your next performance. It is worthy of the effort. (Use only one of these types in an act)

Please learn from this experience and don't let it hamper your desire to perform for children. Do a couple freebees for your local school, or church children's group. Experience helps after you "practice"

Dennis
Dennis Michael
JesterMan
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Maryland, USA
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To every person out there who is planning on starting a new type of show, and may ask for help; PLEASE hear the one clear message from this thread: Ask for ideas well in advance! There is NO WAY anyone is going to take you from zero to hilarious in 3 days. I don't care if you are the next Doug Henning, and you have the same teacher that he did (Now THAT would be magic, eh?), it will not happen that fast! Why? Because it IS all the bits you do, and not just the tricks that make the show. Is this redundant, repeating what has been said above? Yes, because it cannot be said enough. A skilled entertainer can have the kids rolling on the floor with an opener, a closer, and lots of good bits. Of course, we want to do more, as the folks booking may expect to see more magic. Even if you could learn the workings of all the tricks in three days, it is highly unlikely that you will make it magical, . . . or entertaining.

I may be a good kids' show magician, good doing walkaround for adults, and able to keep folks in the hospital in stitches (Oh wait, that is my brother, the doctor), but If I were to have some call me about doing a mental magic show, it better be much more than a week from now. Being skilled in one form offers no guarantee of fast success in another realm.
JM Smile Smile

Balloons, Magic, Mayhem & More!
www.AArdvarkEntertainers.com
www.JesterMan.com

"... destined to take the place of the MudShark in your mythology... " FZ
glatner
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Please people.
Don't get business cards, a website, put up flyers,or advertise yourself as a magician, untill you have a solid routine worked out. Don't get a gig, and then scramble for a routine I learned this a very hard way. Harv, I don't think you should be berating Sleight king. He wasn't the one who asked for his patter the day before a show.
Quote:
On 2005-12-01 04:58, Harv wrote:
Muzicman.....if sleight king has to ask for this type of help three days before a show then he is not properly prepared to take on a paying show (IMHO). A month or two to get prepared to a certain degree I can understand, but three days....fuggedaboudit!!
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