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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Opinions on Magic Lessons (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

scrivomcdivo
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
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What are people's opinions on magic lessons? I am a beginner and would love to have some lessons in magic from a local established magician. Nonetheless, would a beginner be too tempted to simply "copy" the teachers act and not be themselves? Having read this forum, a successful magician is somebody who adds their own personal touch and personality to a trick. If you simply try and be somebody you're not, the trick does not work.

Opinions please??
Sergey Smirnov
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Belgium
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If you are a complete beginner, I think you shouldn't worry too much about these matters. Ahead of you is a lot of hard routine practice. You'll have to work a lot on basic sleights and moves that every magician should know regardless of his/her individual style and personality.
Loual4
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Montreal, Canada
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In my personal experience, when learning magic, you start by learning "the moves", the patter that is suggested either by a teacher or the instructions that came with the trick (book form or video...). Keep in mind that imitating when learning is normal and natural. That is how we learn! Once you understand how the illusion works, and can actually reproduce it's effect in a correct manner, then you can start to personnalize it to your taste!

Like Sergey said, if you are a beginner, you have more things to worry about doing first. Worry about your individual style after you actually learned some effects to present to people.

Have a nice day!

Louis Jutras
JackScratch
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Honestly, part of your education should be about creating your own style and act. If not, you teacher isn't a very good teacher. Likewise he/she is obligated to assess you and if he finds you likely to just copy someone, not educate you. It is all part of the process. Your job is to learn what you are taught as well as you are able.

The other guys are completely correct though, you have a loooooong way to go before you need to worry about performing. By the time you make that journey, assuming you don't try to take shortcuts, you will certainly have your own style.
molsen
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Copenhagen
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JackScratch, some people compare magic to the arts like painting or sculpting. There it is equally, if not more, important to develop your own style of expression, but almost all artists will start by learning how to operate the tools and understand their limitations and strengths.

In magic that would be equivalent to learning the basic slights and mechanisms that make the magic magical. Once you get to know your hands better you will notice that you have a certain handling style. This will most likely inspire you to develop a unique expression.

Having a teacher can help with both, but I think any teacher with experience will advise you to learn some of the tools before worrying too much about the performing character. Best of luck with magic, wether you go for a tutor or decide to work on your own!

Michael
Daoist
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Taipei, Taiwan
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I say go for it. I'm relatively new to magic too, and since I've started meeting with a teacher, my magic has been accelerating much more quickly than it would have otherwise.

Your question, however, was whether you'd be too tempted to copy your teacher's style. I meet with my teacher twice a week and have not been tempted to do so. What everyone has already said is true for me: we work on learning moves, not style.

Incidentally, I copy my teacher's patter verbatim, but that's because it's in Chinese and I wouldn't be able to patter in Chinese otherwise. Smile
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abc
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Don't be too worried about copying patter. I still do it sometimes. Your chartacter will eventually become an extension of your personality and that will only happen if you are comfortable performing magic and to do that you have to mimic.
scrivomcdivo
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
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The hard bit now is finding a teacher. Mind you, I'm going to my city's magic club as a guest in a few weeks and so will ask then.
NeoMagic
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As Erdnase said on the opening page of the card tricks section of his book: "Our readers essaying the tricks should compose their own monologue, so that it may be in keeping with their particular personality or style of address."

So, yes, once you've built a solid foundation, grown in experience and confidence, by all means amend and tweak the effects and routines that you do to suit your own personality and preferences.
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jonzola
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canada
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The best lessons you could take would be found in books. not vids. not another magician. it forces you to experement and not to emulate others. to develope your own style.
DanielCoyne
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Western Massachussetts
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I suspect that a decent teacher could speed the learning process up dramatically and help you focus your practice in a way that's most productive. I bought Royal Road to Card Magic, and I'm sure it contains all the secrets of the universe, but let me tell you...it's not exactly a page-turner. If there were someone around to demonstrate and comment on my technique, it would save a lot of squinting at poorly drawn illustrations and rereading cryptic explanations.

A fellow magic practitioner at a shop today took one look at a manipulation I've been working on and said, "I think your index finger is getting in the way. " In five seconds, a fresh set of eyes helped me advance more than weeks of reading could do.

-Daniel
scrivomcdivo
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Liverpool, United Kingdom
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I think that's a valid point. As I practice a new routine, I eventually become visually unfocused on it and so, find it hard to spot any minute errors
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