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Peter Marucci
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Profile of Peter Marucci
Dennis Loomis writes: "For those of you that say that you don't like balloons, all I can say is if you learned a few sculptures and started doing them your opinion might change. Mine did."

Amen! If you are a paid performer, it's up to you to give the client what he or she wants.

To put it another way—

Remember the Golden Rule: "He who has the gold, makes the rules!"
Dennis Loomis
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1943 - 2013
2113 Posts

Profile of Dennis Loomis
Thanks, Peter. Glad you agree.

I'm reminded of hearing an interview with Frank Sinatra. He was asked if he wasn't tired of singing certain songs which had become his "standards." His reply was that it never entered into his thinking. His fans paid big bucks to see him perform and would be disappointed if they didn't hear "My Way," for example. He recognized that his success was at least partly dependent on giving audiences what they want.

I offer a magic show, because that's what I do. But, I do balloons for the clients that want them. Often I can upgrade my fee after booking 30 or 45 minutes of magic by offering to spend another 15 minutes doing balloons. And I approach balloon sculpture as an entertainer as well. I have lines, gags, and bits with each of the sculptures I do. And, since I bag them up and don't get into just making a balloon for each child of the kind he wants, I can do them in the order I choose and make it into a little show.

Incidently, the "squeaking" can be minimized as can the "popping." These things are usually the result of inexperience.
Dennis Loomis
Itinerant Montebank
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Profile of phill
How about livestock? Rabbits, guinea pigs. If not "live" then how about spring animals?

Scripture, Sculptures & Surprises!
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Harris Deutsch
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Profile of harris
As a nearly normal magician, I have done balloons in the past. I would do them if requested by a client. Mine are very simple compared to the elaborate work done by some of our local workers. Those that do restaurants swear by them in the increase of tips.

If I did restauraunts I might consider them.

I have done very few private affairs during the last couple of years. Most have been corporate or public/community venues.

My forte has been my nearly normal puppets
featuring Ventriloquism, and Marionette Work.

I also have added more music including Nigel Singing, Harmonica bits and Audience sing alongs.

As the old joke said, I used to blow up 100 + at a time. All looked like little doggies.

Of course if you do blow them up the old fashion way be careful as there were reports of lung problems from the stuff inside the balloons.(is that true????))

My favorite thing with a balloon which I do include in most shows is to make a pair of oversized lips which I put over my face with an appropriate (depending on the event) comment.

Harris Deutsch
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
music, magic and marvelous toys
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Profile of Payne

Amen! If you are a paid performer, it's up to you to give the client what he or she wants.

What if your client wants you to produce mouth coils from your mouth? Smile
"America's Foremost Satirical Magician" -- Jeff McBride.
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Profile of WizzBang
I do balloons sometimes, other times I produce the birthday cake, another alternative is produce a rabbit or two, another is producing lollipops from behind their ears. Of course you can always perform a disappearing act and never reappear.
I've never really had a problem filling an hour with magic and fun without a balloon in sight.
Neale Bacon
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Burnaby BC Canada
1775 Posts

Profile of Neale Bacon
I have 3 seperate performing personnas...

Me as magician and ventriloquist
Professor Pickles the Clown
and Mister Puffintwist - Balloon Artiste

I don't do balloons as part of my magic show because I explain to people they are time consuming, and I want them to get the best show possible.

I also can bring along (for a small charge) my Magic Treasure Chest which is a pirate chest with lots of give away goodies I use as prizes for all my helpers. That usually does it.

As a clown, I try not to do them but if someone insists they have to have balloons, I suggest my Mister Puffintwist show.

Just my 2 cents

Neale Bacon (and Friends) Smile
Neale Bacon and his Crazy Critters
Burnaby BC
Canada's Favourite Family Ventriloquist
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Eternal Order
High Desert
12020 Posts

Profile of Decomposed
I have been offering the deluxe package on all my phone scripts. It was intended as a business adventure, because they always accepted the lower cost.

Well, now they are accepting my deluxe package and I find myself working harder to assemble the gift bags and get some of the many balloons premade. Going to offer less than I have been for the deluxe shows.

My regular shows I make a special hat with powers for the birthday child or volunteer. I use a dry erase board and the child tells me what I put on it.

My day care show Wed I have to make 40 balloons. Regular birthday show, only balloons for the birthday child like Ken Scott on his video.
Rupert Bair
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Hi I now its been awhile and it mauy of already been said because I havent read it all but what about punch balloons? they are cheap and kids love 'em!
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Arlington, Virginia
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Profile of rossmacrae
Great ideas here.

I blow up a special gift for the birthday kid - 1 thru 5's get a 16" yellow smile-face beach ball, older boys get a 26" Y-wing rocket ship inflate, older girls get a big butterfly inflate - they last forever, they can be reinflated, they don't get all the kids going "I want a balloon too," and for 30c to 75c each from Rhode Island Novelty ( ) they're really impressive!
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Long Island, NY
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Profile of drosenbe0813
Just to add 2 cents, At Kidabra last year (shameless plug) I learned about a balloon sculpture called a rocket mouse. I am not sure if it is a proprietary thing, but they are great. They help me avoid making 20 swords after the show, which get popped before I'm done with the last balloon, they allow me to premake all the ones I need for multiple shows; they provide a consistency to my time (it takes about the same amount of time to give 10 out as it does 40) and they are fun for the kids (and adults). If someone confirms that I can give away the 'work', then I will gladly pass on more details.
Rupert Bair
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Profile of Rupert Bair
Yes I think they have been discussed here before, they are very easy to make and they fly!
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I have danced upon
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Profile of Magic.J.Manuel
Silly Billy has an easy inflatable jumbo wand that you can get several minutes of business from, and give to the party VIP, plus include in the party goody bags. Then use it as an up sell if the party is larger. It is big enough to put a mailing label size sticker on it for advertising. There are several inflatable characters you could use to make a few comic lines about and give away.

Another Value Added idea for a party is...
Digital Camera Photo Fun! With today's digital cameras and photo printers, you can take pictures and print the one you want on site. With a laptop PC and not too much software you can place the party goers in famous pictures, Over-the-falls, Mona Lisa, flying witch on the images on DVD/CD-ROM.
You can also easily print on t-shirt transfer paper. This is also good for older family gatherings.
The cost per whole page of pictures is about $2.00, depending on paper and printer. This could be a whole additional hour plus of "show time".
Nothing would get done at all, if man waited so long that no one could find fault with it.
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Eternal Order
Philadelphia, PA
15111 Posts

Profile of magic4u02
I guess if I go back to the very original post and question that was asked, it is easy to get around from not doing thew balloons. Simply do not mention them in your marketing.

No one says you have to do balloons at all to be a good and successful kid show performer. If you treat yourself as a "solutions provider" for youre clients, then you learn other ways to add benefits for them and the party they are trying to have.

Bottom line is they want you to be able to "entertain" the children. They want the kids to have fun in the process and to give them a much needed brak in the party by giving them a rest.

If you learn to pick up on solving the problems that the clients are often after, you can find many solutions for them through the use of your "benefits"

This does not mean you have to do baloons at all in order to meet their needs just as long as you are "solutions" focused.

Kyle Peron

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