The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The spooky, the mysterious...the bizarre! » » Very, Very basic "newbie" question. (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Darren Roberts
View Profile
Loyal user
222 Posts

Profile of Darren Roberts
Being new to magic, I'm still not sure what constitues "Bizarre Magic". I'm sure that "decapitations" would fit...and probably needle through arm.

What is your definition? What types of effects are involved?

I could have posted this in the beginners area, but felt it would be more appropriate here.

Thanks for your help!
ptbeast
View Profile
Special user
Oregon
829 Posts

Profile of ptbeast
This is a basic question that no one seems to agree on. There are almost as many definitions of bizarre magic as there are bizarrists. I will give you my take, and I am sure that you will get many more.

In my mind, at its most basic level, bizarre magic is magic that is presented as 'real' as opposed to doing stunts or 'tricks.'

This most often takes the form of either storytelling with the magic incidental to the story or where it is presented as real magick (imagine voodoo ceremonies or tarot readings or spoon bending, etc).

Another way to look at it, and perhaps the most important aspect of the bizarre is that it is looking to reach the audience in a way other than to gain applause or to have them say "how'd he do that?" Usually it is to produce some sort of emotion, be it fear, shock, sadness or joy.

Again, I know that I am rambling, but I think that the bottom line is that to be bizarre is to be different from the norm. Beyond that, I think we each need to look inside to see what makes our magic bizarre.

Asking questions like yours is the first step.

Dave
pyro
View Profile
Regular user
120 Posts

Profile of pyro
Needle thru arm and decapitations are under the category of "geek magic"
Necromancer
View Profile
Inner circle
Chicago
2985 Posts

Profile of Necromancer
Dave: well done.

Just my two cents -- isn't a comedy magician seeking to provoke an emotion, too?

Bizarre magick as a movement began as a reaction against magical junk food -- the slick but essentially meaningless magical entertainment that pervaded nightclubs up to that point.

Instead of just providing lots of laughs, dove productions, assistant vivisections, and Vegas-style eye candy, bizarre magick aspires to be Important. It seeks to reclaim our art as the domain of the biblical miracle-worker, the shaman, the mage who guided the human tribe through extraordinary and otherworldly experiences.

At times, such high-minded goals can lead to pretentiousness. But it can also lead to performances that affect audience members in ways far beyond that of ordinary tricks.

Within this definition, there is room for a wide variety of effects, ranging from mindreading to spiritualism to, yes, needle-through-arm. What makes them all "bizarre" is the presentational framework -- rather than being mere "look at me" tricks, they become emotionally-charged presentations that are perceived by the public as quite possibly real, and potentially frightening.

In the realm of the bizarre, we are not clever tricksters; we are workers of real and powerful Magick. It's a tough job, but if we want magic to mean something, somebody's got to do it.
Creator of The Xpert (20 PAGES of reviews!) and the Hands-Off Multiple ESP System ("Quality and design far exceed any ESP cards on the market"-Genii), both at Penguin.
Caleb Strange
View Profile
Special user
Manchester UK
676 Posts

Profile of Caleb Strange
Darren, Dave and Neil know their stuff. I'd add that bizarre magic(k) is something you get a feel for. Search in this forum for recommended reading, or flick through some of the previous posts. There are tons of great ideas here. You'll soon get a feel for it, and, hopefully, a taste. Like everything else, everybody has a slightly different take on it, though I'd guess we'd all hold to the mantra 'Effect is everything'.

Welcome. You'll never leave:).

Caleb Strange.
-- QCiC --
Peter Marucci
View Profile
Inner circle
5389 Posts

Profile of Peter Marucci
PTBeast writes: "There are almost as many definitions of bizarre magic as there are bizarrists."

That's funny, as in "strange", not "ha, ha", because that is almost exactly the way my lecture on bizarre magic begins!

Bizarre does NOT have to be geek or spooky or ghoulish (although it often is).

I can, indeed, even include comedy. For some examples, check out my Bizarre Bazaar column in the e-zine Visions (www.online-visions.com).

Bizarrists might also be interested in Doug Byrd's site, Bizarre Magick.com (www.bizarremagick.com) and Karl Bartoni's Dragonskull (www.dragonskull.co.uk)

Smile
Darren Roberts
View Profile
Loyal user
222 Posts

Profile of Darren Roberts
Wow! Thanks for the wonderful input. I'll be sure and follow up with your recommendations to continue learning more about this branch of magic.
ptbeast
View Profile
Special user
Oregon
829 Posts

Profile of ptbeast
I would just like to take a moment to expound a little on a point that Peter made. Bizarre magic does not have to be spooky or shocking. As he said it can be
funny. I think that too often, even as bizarrists, we limit ourselves by over categorizing things. For example, I have many times heard people say that they perform both bizarre magic and children's magic. Why would they not be one in the same? In fact children believe in 'real' magic, so why only do 'tricks' for them?
For the perfect example of how this can be done, see Brother Shadow's lecture on Dragonskull.co.uk entitled "The Wizard in the Cottage." When he first related that story to me several years ago, I thought it was inspired. Today it is even more brilliant. Let's not box ourselves in by over defining bizarre magic.

And thanks to those of you on this board who constantly challenge those limits and encourage us to think outside the box. I am very glad to have discovered this little hideaway.

Dave
Caleb Strange
View Profile
Special user
Manchester UK
676 Posts

Profile of Caleb Strange
I unreservedly second Dave's recommendation of Brother Shadow's lecture. Absolutely wonderful! You kind of think that if each city park had such a cottage and such a creative performer, literacy figures would be up in five years time, and petty crime down in ten.

Regards,

Caleb Strange.
-- QCiC --
Bill Fienning
View Profile
Special user
635 Posts

Profile of Bill Fienning
Regarding Brother Shadow: He has been a friend of ours since we met him at Weerd Weekend many years ago. His effects are interesting and moving, but never disgusting or objectionable. Some are quite strange, but none would offend.

This is an important point. Bizarre magic is storytelling magic. It might be very far from the mainstream, but it need not be (and should not be) offensive.

The closest that I come to ever being offensive is The Exorcism. However, it has a point to the story. Furthermore, I will not perform it for my conservative Christians friends, except those who would understand its intent.
Bill Fienning

"It's More than Tricks"
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The spooky, the mysterious...the bizarre! » » Very, Very basic "newbie" question. (0 Likes)
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2019 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.11 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL