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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Magic...at a moment's notice! » » Night Club Magic? (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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cetchmoh
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Aloah!

Tonight I performed the first time in a night club. It was some sort of Black Beat Party, and I had my deck of cards with me (and some other props....) as usual.
I was a bit bored and started to show off with some flourishes.
Of course people asked if I would do some tricks. It was so *** loud I had to perform without pattern. So I did the Brian Tudor Routines from Showoff. Sankey's 3 Ring Circus and Vanished a Cigarette. People were stunned, chicks gave me their number and I was happy Smile
Now my question:
Do you guys have any suggestions/recommendations for magic which is capable in night club sessions. (usually I don't feel very comfortable performing without patter... "where did my misdirection go?" Smile )



Good fight, good night guys... Smile
Lee Darrow
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Loud clubs are difficult. Also, management can be troublesome as they do NOT want people to distract from their bottom line, which is selling booze (after getting the cover charge at the door, of course!). So watch for the bouncer's reactions, especially with cards.

Often, flashing a deck in a night club is enough to get you bounced on the spot as they think you are gambling and they do NOT want to lose their liquor license! And no, the bouncers often will NOT stop to talk about it, they will simply hustle a person out.

A better approach, now that you have successfully done this in the club, would be to approach the management and hit them up for a strolling gig - a PAID gig. Please do NOT work "just for tips" as "the worker should be worthy of his wage." Not to mention that, if you do that, you kill the market for the other working pros in your area.

As for material, CMH, almost any coins across, han ping chien, TT salt pour, sponge balls, chink-a-chink with beer bottle caps, ashes to palm, T&R napkin, copper silver in spectator's hand, flipstick, ring on wand (use a drinking straw), loops, cards to pocket, Triumph, Chinese Sticks, Egg Bag, Professor's Nightmare, Cash Paddle, Jumping Gems, you get the idea

Lee Darrow, C.H.
http://www.leedarrow.com
<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
cetchmoh
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Hey Lee!

Wonderful suggestions of material Smile
(what is CMH?)

By the way: I live in Germany. Gambling and street hustles are very rare around here. So there is no problem with bouncers Smile
There are also no other working "pros" in my area...
Lee Darrow
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CMH = Crazy Man's Handcuffs. See The Magic of Michael Ammar or the Rubber Band videos of Dan Harlan for details. This is one of the greatest single magic effects of the late 20th century in my professional opinion.

And thank you for your kind words. As a close up worker, this is pretty much my natural environment, so this kind of stuff is second nature to me.

Some other routines would include Copper/Silver/Brass, ambitious card, the Travellers (multiple cards to individual pockets), ring that goes up an angle on a rubber band, rubberband through thumb, printing your business card (on one of Michael Ammar's videos), acrobatic match box, gem busters (dealer item, a gem covered die changes to a ball, then to a flat disc), karate coin, cap and pence, dime in Perrier Bottle (Richard;s Almanac - David Williamson, using the Striking move, I believe), Rubdown (Ross Bertram), 3-ball routine (Roth/Marlo) and maybe card to forehead if you are feeling like doing something funny.

Lee Darrow, C.H.
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<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
gink103
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I was working a nightclub every wednseday night before I moved back home from college for the summer. Basically its like being a mime and a magician at the same time. I pretty much wouldn't even mess with cards there (even though cards are my favorite). A rubberband routine is good , maybe start with some Ring Thing stuff then move to ring through rubberband then end with Crazy Mans Handcuffs. I usually do gregory wilsons 3/4 across because its quick , easy, normal coins, I did make an alternate ending that I felt was more climatic. Bill changes are perfect for the club. Just do hundy 500 or any other bill change. Pen Thru dollar. Copper Silver. If your gonna do cards don't start with them, and if you do do them just do something like 2 card monte or a 4-5 phase ambitious card routine b/c they are easy to do with minimul talking because the club is soo loud.
CasualSoul
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I do most of my performances in pubs and night clubs. Hundy 500 and any other bill transformations or restorations are strong workers. Almost all coin sleights and gimmicks--if simple, fast, and visual--hit hard..... especially if using a hold-out system to manage your gimmicked coin handling (reduces exposure risk from grabby drunk guys). TT related stuff with money, cigarettes, matches, napkins, sugar is also always good. Vanishing a full shot glass, without drinking it Smile, is always a hit. Coin and cap in beer bottle is great. Glass penetrations like Enigma and Geir Bratlie's Infusion are fun if you're good at them. If you're up for a little set-up/preparation, Osmosis is cool (I make my own and use it as a lead-in to cap in bottle, then give the whole thing out as a souvenir). Tricks that use a specs finger ring like Northbound are good and make a great lead-in for a ring off rope using your necklace. UV ink/light and IT & PK effects--if timed right and not overdone--freak girls right out.

But of course, more than anything else, fire magic is what gets everybody really pumped. The bigger and more mysterious the flames, the more they love it. I don't know, maybe it's due to the natural chaotic state of these environments. If you really want to get into it, get to know Zel Gel, it's every pyro magician's best friend. You obviously have to be careful with fire and you should use it sparingly or you can expect some trouble with bar staff. Also, I've heard that it can be difficult to get appropriate authorization to use fire in a paid gig.

On a side note, I never pull out cards, or any other obvious/inappropriate props, in a pub or club as it makes me feel a little geeky given the context of the environment....but that's just me.
"Open their mind by performing the impossible"
Lee Darrow
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To me, the Hundy 500 seems a GREAT way to set yourself to get mugged on the way out to your car after a gig! Especially if you use the 4 or 5 $100 bills! Talk about flashing your cash to the thugs!

Color me crazy, but after some idiots tried to mug me for the five Eisenhower dollars I carried about fifteen years ago, I am very leery of doing anything with cash that's not borrowed. I now use half dollars and often make them disappear at the end of a routine, just to be safe.

To me, it's the height of self-endangerment to pull off the change of 5 $1 bills into 5 $100 bills in a crowd of people that you don't know and who have been drinking (and maybe drugging as well!). When one considers that, according to the National Institute for Mental Health, the incidence of drug or alcohol addiction stands at one-in-four people in the USA, waving that much cash around in a bar or nightclub is just ASKING to get clobbered on your way to your car.

Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that they're NOT out to get you! Smile

Lee Darrow, C.H.
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<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
CasualSoul
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Excellent point Lee! I always have a big "crew" with me so I usually don't have much to worry about, but you can never be too careful.
"Open their mind by performing the impossible"
Lee Darrow
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One way to get around the idea of getting mugged with the Hundy 500 is to do the change to a bunch of mismade bills, of course! Or to foreign currency in low denominations. That way, people will be more curious, but won't want to mug you because they won't be able to SPEND the money!

And, if you are going to be completely paranoid, you could always use some of the reprinted Confederate States of America money (US Civil War bills from the guys who lost) that can be found at some of the Civil War sites online. That stuff is worthless except as curiosity paper.

Sometimes, one has to think outside the wallet. LOL!

Lee Darrow, C.H.
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<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
Dannydoyle
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Personally big and fantastic flame displays are out. Just plain unsafe.

Big hair spray, well it is a recipe for disaster in the wrong place.

Keep in mind youare working for 2 or maybe 4 people at most at a time. Your tricks need to be visible, and basically need no verbal misdirection.

Almost any transormation, vanish or floating effect will work well. Be visual.

I would also stay away from the cards to avoid the misunderstandings about gambling and liquor licenses.

Heck if you have a table top and coasters you can even do matrix if you want. It is visual, although I hate it personally.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
jstone
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When I do club work, I only do two effects all night:

1. Card on Ceiling
2. Vanishing Lit Cigarette

That's it.
lylaster
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Vanishing Lit Cigarette is the BEST one I use.

Bite out quarter is good, I keep mine in my pocket

I also do Hundy 500 but 1-> 20's
Bob Sanders
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Once I made the decision to quit working in cigarette smoke, I nearly dropped night club magic completely in favor of country club magic. Both are fun. However, there are some night club magic problems that I’ve never had in country clubs.

Lee is absolutely right about playing cards in some jurisdictions. Avoid them if you haven't gotten the OK from the club owner. The other is flashing money. Don't!

Remember that a night club survives on drinks paid for (served and consumed are different measures). Tips to a magician that are considered to reduce liquor purchasing capacity, are considered competition. Don't compete with the host. You will always lose. Do not compete with the bartenders or waitresses either. They will have their jobs when you are gone. (And can arrange that!) Help them sell drinks and get tips.

So what does the magician have to offer? Keeping the customer in the bar longer and buying drinks! Otherwise, neither of you is an honored guest. The space is only available to customers currently buying drinks. When people quit buying drinks, quit entertaining them. The management wants their parking spaces.

By the time I was in my mid-thirties, I would not work bars that did not have a stage and stage show. I wish I had adopted that rule sooner. The stage shows generated other good bookings. Table magic seldom generated a worth-while booking for me. It did generate a few local TV commercials that paid worse than stage shows. Yet the TV commercials generated some good bookings. Audience size has a lot to do with take-home pay. Do the math. Night club magic is fun and easy to get. I’m not convinced that it is a career builder. It is a character builder. It is also a good place to experiment.

Good luck to you. Keep us posted on your experiences and enjoy your adventure.

Bob Sanders
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Decomposed
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WOw Bob. Not very encouraging:( Just kidding, thanks for the advice. Im close to getting hired at an upscale new nightclub doing strolling mentalism and magic.
I too wanted stage shows and will continue to seek them but an agent hired me and he is the go between. I already work at a resort where alcohol is served but only beer and wine with food also. This will be an experience to say the least.
ku7uk3
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Ghhn
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ku7uk3
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Its been a while since I performed in a nightclub, but the tricks that went down the best were:

Elastic band magic

Spike through Tongue

Delite

Spoon bending

Some basic coin sleights, but done with an LED Lit-up ball.

Floating light-bulb. (Battery powered bulb, on i-thread)

Nightclubs are not only loud and smokey, but they are also very dark. So performing with items that light up are a great advantage.
You can also just stand in a corner, and make the bulb float, which gets everybody's attention, and makes them walk up to you.
Walking up to them is not easy in a nightclub, as most are on the pull and half drunk. They didn't go there for some cheesy magic trick, so you have to impress them with something hard-hitting.

Since the dark atmosphere hides the thread, floating tricks go down a real treat.

Stephen Able
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http://www.amazingstephen.co.uk/shop-dvds.html
Lee Darrow
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More and more regions are adopting a smoke-free legal situation, even for bars and, for me and my allergies, this is a godsend!

Some other goodies, of course - self-printing business card (paddle move), ANY paddle trick, and, of course, make SURE that the wait staff is alerted when the drinks get low! It makes them your BEST friends and keeps management happy! Arrange a hand signal that you can use to let them know that you have some "live ones" for them to get refills for.

Some other goodies - Salt shaker through table, Ellis Ring off Hanky, Okito's Oho!, Okito's Ringer, Gypsy Thread (Londono method - no reset necessary, New Stars of Magic), Raven coin change in spectator's hand.

Just some more stuff.

Lee Darrow, C.H.
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<BR>"Because NICE Matters!"
GlenD
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I enjoy your posts, Lee. You're obviously in the "working pro" category but I have a question for you.

In your initial post on this thread, you mentioned chinese sticks. I am curious how these fit in a situation like bar magic? I always figured them only good for kids parties.

I am not belittling the effect or bashing it in any way and I do own a set (FYI).

Thanks,

GlenD
"A miracle is something that seems impossible but happens anyway" - Griffin

"Any future where you succeed, is one where you tell the truth." - Griffin (Griffin rocks!)
The Mac
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Becareful what you carry to a club ..you probably wont make it thru the door with a color changing knife..or your own bottle.

me thinking aloud:

1. Try Kevin parkers passing thru.. great for when some girl is just done with her drink and is about to throw the bottle away..you can carry the gimmick in your wallet.

2. I.T cus its dark..? think again cus clubs have lights flashing in all directions ..my friend noticed the "spider web" I was using!

3. I love the coins across by Michael paul..that vanish is enough to get anyones attention. " excuse me miss, my eyesight isn't too good..can you tell me how many coins are in my hand? two..? you're sure..look ( do the vanish) ..hmmm feels like just one..maybe your eyesight isn't too great either!..wanna see that again...or something even better?"

4. Raven a coin from someones change when its slapped on the counter by the bartender. just say " hey! he gave you a fake coin..look..its fake..its not real..its not even here" have a coin ready in the other hand justincase you're dealing with a hothead.

5. once you have their attention - ring flite is a great trick to go with.

6. metal force a playing card without cards..how..? by texting the answer as a message to her phone..also a way to get her number.

7. do dis-jointed when someone is about to kick you *** for flirting with his girlfriend..just go "..you wanna go with me man..you're sure? cus I'm a freak I'll eat you alive..I feel no pain..look!"


when I think of somemore I'll put ot an e-book at a price where you can feel screwed when you buy it! Smile
Leeman
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If you want to get people's attention in a loud, crowded, dark night club what could be better then d-lights. A friend of mine uses them when he goes to vegas.
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