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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Penny for your thoughts » » Have You Thanked Uri ? (1 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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seraph127
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On 2007-07-07 18:02, mindpunisher wrote:
I believe the best performers promote themselves and are bigger than any art.

I don't believe its about magic its about creating a profound experience for the audience. The magic or mentalism is just one of the tools. Its the connection with the performer and the shared "consciousness" that is created.

You see it is never about methods or tricks or effects its about the experience. This where magicians fall down. like many sales people that fall in love with their products and lose sight of the needs emotions and deepest drives of their customers they miss the sale. Or they sell something that's not quite appreciated.

that's why good mentalism is more popular than magic these days because it touches something deep inside everyone of us.

Geller was a past master at this and made a huge impact worldwide. Magicians will never grasp this and keep focusing on switches, impressions boards, and thumbtips.. And as the late Bruce Lee once said look at the finger and miss all the heavenly glory.

You just won't get it...


I call bullsh*t.

Rober-Houdin opined "Better a man honor his craft than be honored by it." So much for "best performers promote themselves and are bigger than any art." It seems to me that most of the noteworthy personalities in an art are among its most capable artists. Their personalities are only of interest because they are such talented artists. An example is Jaco Pastorius, known for his egotism, but immortal only because he was one of the most talented jazz bassists who ever was.

And about the "experience" being the thing? How do you achieve that without a performance? And how do guide experience without yourself knowing where you're going and how you'll get there? The "tricks" DO matter, for they are the materials of our craft. Even the "secret" is important: Darwin Ortiz wrote a whole book about how to construct methods that give the best illusion, that most seem unexplainable. Without paying careful attention to method, people see thru the illusion and then it IS just about gimmickry and trickery. See if you can get a group of musicians to swallow this kind of talk. Tell them that this or that instrument, genre, arrangement, orchestration, etc are unimportant. Maybe they'll ask you exactly how you plan to create an "experience" with so little concern about the specifics of how to create it. Tell a composer that it makes no difference if the violin or viola plays this part. Or that it makes no difference if I play this run in the second position or the seventh. Same pitches, right?

As for mentalism being more popular than magic...tell that to David Copperfield. He's been the world's highest-paid entertainer. Mentalism touches something deep inside us? What about conjuring? Magic is (usually) about bringing things about by simply willing them. That's a divine act, and if religion isn't one of the deepest parts of us, what is? If magicians come off poorly, I think its because many trivialize their own magic. I don't think magicians should become false messiahs, only that they stop making magic about promoting their sleight-of-hand skills, but about how those skills can inspire wonder. Not forgetting the sleight-of-hand, but using the right sleights in the right way.

And in the end, I believe Geller only cared about himself. He misrepresented himself to gain fame and money. Not my idea of a role model, either as a person or a performer.

I, too, think mentalism elevates itself as a craft/art when it distances itself from charlatanism. Because then we can present ourselves for what we are - craftspersons and performance artists - not self-aggrandizing frauds.
There are many tricks, and many effects, but rarely a Grand Effect. There are many entertainers, but few real magicians. Many technicians, but few artists who use their art to explore their vision. - Derren Brown, Absolute Magic
DJM
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MP, I agree that he used to be amazing for those who believed him. And like you said, taking it too far and not knowing when to quit ruined it for him eventually.

Watching him now still going on when almost everyone knows the truth, is getting pretty pathetic and damaging his legency. Imagine if he stopped performing 20 years ago, we would be still trying to figure out if he's real or not. Now all the mystery is gone, and only thing left is his ego. And he's a smart man, he should have known he wouldn't be able to make it last forever.

As for those people in the past who were excited about his special powers, I won't be suprised if most of them feel pretty foolish and angry now that they know the real truth. After all, they will mostly remember about how it was all a lie, rather than how excited they used to be. So I don't see much positive about that either.
Lash
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Rick,

Just wanted to respond to your post. My audience knows I am a magician and that I have no "special powers." I do not go out of my way to mention that as some performers do , but they realize that by the way I bill myself and present myself. Geller made it clear that he thought he had real powers. My audience, or any audience can still be highly entertained knowing that it is all really illusion. They have been for years. People know that Copperfield never really vanished the Statue of Liberty or walked through the Great Wall of China. But they are still enchanted by it. Audiences are entertained by the presentation and the flawless execution of the illusion that makes it seem like reality even though we know better. Audiences admire the skill that the performer possesses that make it look like the real thing. That's the true secret of magic: making an illusion seem like reality so much that just for a brief moment, it seems real. We suspend disbelief momentarily and are taken in by it. But afterwards, we realize that it was all an illusion. But we are still mesmorized just the same by the performance and the connection the performer makes with the audience. He doesn't need to lie to do that. That's my opinion.

And I have to disagree with Mind Punisher. To me, the art will always and should always be bigger than the artist. That is where Geller and others have made their mistakes by attempting to elevate themselves past that. As performers of the craft, our first loyalty and deepest respect must be given to the craft. That will make us better performers.
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So you are a magician Lash posting on this forum.

C'mon if you were a painter would you be posting on the muscians forum?

And I am sorry to correct you but the art is the artist.

J ack

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mindpunisher
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DJM,

I don't know of anyone who is angry about Geller. The truth is that they are indifferent. In general most everyday people don't care. Most people have forgotten.

I agree with you he is now becoming a joke. And he should've retired leaving everyone wondering if he was real.

Lash I sort of feel sorry for you in a way...most modern audiences don't admire magicians they are bored rigid. The only people who really admire magicians are other magicians.

The public don't care about the "art" only what is in it for them. that's human nature. You use the word "we" and that just reinforces my suspiscion. You are not focused on your audience but on your own execution of your ART.

Mentalism the audience is part of the art not alienated from it.
Lash
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MP,

I never said that audiences "admire" magicians. I said they admire their "skill." They are entertained by the presentation, the performer is merely the one executing that presentation. That reinforces my point that the art is greater than the artist. And I don't think audiences are "bored rigid" with magicians. Try telling that to David Copperfied, Lance Burton. And yes I am focussed on the audience. It would be ridiculous and wrong of me to approach it any other way. If the audience is not entertained, then I haven't done my job properly. That is my failure and the art of magic is given a bad representation. No need to feel sorry for me. I love and respect magic, as we all should.
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Quote:
On 2007-07-07 21:01, Jim-Callahan wrote:
So you are a magician Lash posting on this forum.

C'mon if you were a painter would you be posting on the muscians forum?

And I am sorry to correct you but the art is the artist.

J ack

H.O.A-X


True words!

I am my art and my art is me.
When I am on stage, it is me, not mentalism, not magic, me.
I am the art, I am the product.

The true artist transcends the art form and creates one of his own, be true to oneself and one's vision, doing otherwise is the quickest path to mediocrity.

Tony
seraph127
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Quote:
On 2007-07-07 21:01, Jim-Callahan wrote:
So you are a magician Lash posting on this forum.

C'mon if you were a painter would you be posting on the muscians forum?

And I am sorry to correct you but the art is the artist.

J ack

H.O.A-X






What if one knew about both painting and music?

I am sorry to correct you Jack but the art is not the artist. The art is what the artist does.

Kind regards to Alice.
There are many tricks, and many effects, but rarely a Grand Effect. There are many entertainers, but few real magicians. Many technicians, but few artists who use their art to explore their vision. - Derren Brown, Absolute Magic
Tony Iacoviello
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On 2007-07-07 22:27, seraph127 wrote:

What if one knew about both painting and music?

I am sorry to correct you Jack but the art is not the artist. The art is what the artist does.

Kind regards to Alice.


Seraph127

I disagree. My art is an extension of me, from me, a part of me.

On a side note, to correct the misinformation; mentalism is not magic, it is not a branch of magic, and it is not an outgrowth of magic. It is an outgrowth of Spiritualism. Smile

Tony
seraph127
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On 2007-07-07 22:32, Tony Iacoviello wrote:

I disagree. My art is an extension of me, from me, a part of me.

Tony


Ours is a performance art. We perform, and it becomes a part of the audience (if we've done it well at all). It bears our stamp, but it belongs to them. Until we let the art go, release it from the confines of our selves, the audience cannot assimilate it, there is no performance and no art.
There are many tricks, and many effects, but rarely a Grand Effect. There are many entertainers, but few real magicians. Many technicians, but few artists who use their art to explore their vision. - Derren Brown, Absolute Magic
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On 2007-07-07 22:32, Tony Iacoviello wrote:
On a side note, to correct the misinformation; mentalism is not magic, it is not a branch of magic, and it is not an outgrowth of magic. It is an outgrowth of Spiritualism. Smile

Tony


Wow...I hope you're kidding. I do believe that mantalism CAN be a form of spiritualism. For example, several years ago, BEFORE I CHANGED MY SPIRITUAL BELIEFS, I recieved extensive training in Tarot reading. It was not the "cold reading" type of thing that is mentioned on here, but actually an intensive study of each card, and what symbolism was present on each card..what each symbol meant....which cards related to each other...the numerical and astrological associations of ecah card, etc. It was a learned skill, and I believed, as my teacher taught me, that the guiding forces of the universe would casue a person to choose the right cards to hear what they needed to hear. Then it was my job to be open enough to receive the information, and to have the skill to translate it. (I don't do any of that anymore, by the way. I have abandonded all of that New Age stuff for good old fashioned Christianity) In that case...it was spiritualism. But I havent heard anyone give any credednce to anything like that in this forum. Mentalism on this forum is clearly for entertainment purposes, and perfomed with the use of effects and gimmicks. I don't think that's wrong, but it certainly isn't spiritual. It's magic using mind tricks instead of visual tricks.
As Always,
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Uri who?
"Of all words of tongue and pen,
the saddest are, "It might have been"

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Marc Spelmann
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Uri is a massive influence with me personally, ethically I have a few issues but hey been there discussed that..
From my view point I watched Uri bend metal when I was a kid and I remember vividly trying to do the same thing.

Metal bending as far as I am aware didn't originate with Uri but he sure made it a signature piece, much like Jackson doing the moonwalk which actually came from mime artists and then with the body poppers and break dancers.

It is a little difficult to thank someone who says they are doing it for real when I am not (wish I could)
On my original DVDs I titled one effect as In The Shadow of Geller which was my way of acknowledging his input and influence.

Spelmann
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Anabelle
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I never watched Uri when he began and became famous, I hadn't been born then, but I believe he started performing that way (right or wrong), became famous that way, so how else will he continue to make an income if he just comes out and says, hey everyone, I'm just a magician doing tricks.

I've looked at his website and the guy doesn't' seem so bad, he's making money but he's helping people too, by being a motivational speaker, supporting the climb for Tibet which supports freedom for all humanity, he does charity work, and from what I gathered he teaches people to think positively and do things that will give them that positivity boost like having people visit his Well Being Pyramid. Who cares how he bends spoons! The mind is very powerful and there's nothing wrong with helping people have more positive thoughts and a sense of empowerment and positivity by visiting things like his Pyramid or sitting down to talk to him, or reading one of his books.

Quite honestly, I wouldn't mind hearing what he would have to say to me considering I still suffer memory issues from my accident over a year ago and even though people tell me I will recover fully, I personally have my doubts. Could he say something to me that would perhaps help me think in a different way? Maybe I've been my worst enemy in my recovery. A visit to his Pyramid (for instance) might help me whether I believe he bends his spoons with trickery or not. Some people have a blanket problem with "psychics", saying they are all bad, but I believe that "Psychics" who give positive and empowering readings giving customers hope and positivity, are an asset, because maybe these same people are not getting that sort of support from family, friends, or even their doctors who might have told them they will never recover, walk again, etc. In this case a "psychic" might give them the kind of mind boost they need to make a positive change. Also, it seems to me Uri is not trying that hard to hide the fact that he might be using mentalism to bend spoons or fix clocks, he's added a "what do magicians say about Uri?" section and I've seen pictures of him with David Blaine, etc. I wouldn't do that if I did not want to be associated with the magic community at all.

We all make mistakes and even if he believes he made a mistake in starting his career out by claiming what he has claimed, it seems that now he's making the best of his situation, and in the process, he's helping many people. Nothing wrong with that.

Anabelle
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Anabelle, that was well said. Thank you.
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Lash
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Anabelle,

I concur with Stuart that your post was well said. However, I have to disagree. One, it does matter, even if his his message is positive, if it causes people to believe and have hope in something that doesn't exist or isn't there. That can be and is dangerous. That's where it crosses the line of just having fun or thinking a good thought. And as you say he just started out that way so what could he do? How about admit the truth? That's always a good start. He would have garnered a lot of respect by doing that. If we would follow your model then we could never correct a mistake by admitting we were wrong. And do not take this as an attack on you because it is not. He could have still performed his feats and no doubt would have been just as famous because he is that gifted as a performer and he had the charisma to make him stand out among the rest. Positive thinking is good, but having people believe in something that isn't real is bad, even if it is to accomplish a good goal. If that were the case, then we could all lie to each other just to make one another feel better. In the end that wouldn't be a good idea. And you did point out that Uri does some good things such as charity work. That is very much true and thank you for pointing that out. But I still stand behind my belief that he is deceitful and the bad outweighs the good. Just my humble opinion.
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Do you tell your children that Santa Claus exists? I grew up with that belief and it was incredibly magical to me, I loved it and wouldn't have it any other way. When I grew up I realized he didn't exist and the idea of Christmas changed into more adult thinking. Some of the wonderful magic was gone replaced by another kind of magic, but it wasn't dangerous. I don't have kids, but if I ever do, I will tell them about Santa Claus. How about belief in an afterlife? In my opinion it's more dangerous to think there isn't one, no karma, no nothing, you just seize to exist and what you do on this earth doesn't matter at all. Would you say that to your children? I'm glad my parents never spoke to me that way. Now, as an adult, I have my own beliefs. What would you say to those who do not believe in God and say that God is just a fantasy like Santa Claus? For some, believing in God is a beautiful thing, for others a dangerous excuse to act in awful ways. Positive and negative are pretty much in anything. Psychics can be dangerous, or they can be an asset towards the betterment of humanity, often helping those with little help, cope better with their lives. Nothing wrong in believing in that kind of magic. For me Uri falls into that latter category.

Anabelle
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Hi Anabelle,

I get what you are saying and have to agree to a certain extant, however there are many people out there that do believe in the after life, heaven, God, etc who are more dangerous than a lot of none believers..

I think ultimately it is a personal choice, when I watch John Edwards I see a man who uses humour and a very gentle approach that clearly delights those that wish to see him and listen to him, however I do still feel a little awkward about it.

When I have kids I would tell them about Santa, in fact I'll probably fake footage of Santa just leaving so my kids can witness it on Christmas day. I do however believe that as a child there is a difference, they are innocent and have the rest of their lives to deal with reality, when they become adults I do think it is important to see the world for what it is.

I am a total none believer, I sometimes wish I could believe but I can assure you that as a none believer I am far less dangerous than some of the believers out there. I have one simple rule and that is to respect those whom respect me, try to help if I can, not waste time with jealousy or anger but remember to smile and enjoy life. I believe in working hard, having a positive outlook and being a descent human being who treats others how I would want to be treated.

This is not based on any other rules than my own, that makes me feel good. Now as a non believer I would never attempt to discourage anyones belief, I have a simple thought and that is if it makes you happy and hurts no one then please continue.

Uri is / was a celebrity psychic who made headlines from many avenues including trying to loacate a black box from an airline crash site. This to me is wrong, if my child or parent had died in that crash I would find it very distasteful for someone to cash in on my grief and horrible situation by claiming they could find the black box..

I do however feel that the spoon bending, drawing dupes etc were quite harmless, I hope no one joined a cult based on these demonstrations. We as entertainers are in a totally different place, an audience can suspend their disbelief for a few moments but most realise that if we could really bend metal, duplicate drawings and predict words and thoughts why on earth are we at their Christmas bash for?

Uri and any psychic is potentially dangerous in that if people start to spend money on something that isn't real isn't that fraud? If I sold you tap water but claimed it was the tears of an ancient monk that would help fight cancer and you did 'feel' more positive or better but none the less still had cancer that is fraud.

A comedian can make us feel better without lies or deception, equally a piece of music, a film, art or the smile of a lived one. Surely that is better to make us feel real happiness not an illusion of happiness or hope?

Again I must say I do understand your point and do agree, however I am a happy person who tries to be happy by the reality of real life, real people, real thoughts, real hopes and real dreams. I lost my God father ten years ago and he genuinely was my father figure, role model who believed I could do anything I put my heart into, I would LOVE to see him on the otherside but I know that is very unlikely, however I feel honoured that I got what time I had with him and he does live on but in my heart and in my mind.

For me that is more important than an empty hope that I will see him again. Trust me Anabelle, if I am wrong I will see you on the otherside and give you a big hug and say "You were right!"

Sorry to ramble on but what a great few posts here, who'd have thought on a mentalism forum we could get so deep. It sure beats the petty moans about products etc.

Peace and respect

Spelmann
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mindpunisher
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People will aways spend money on fraudulant psychics...

Long before and long after hes gone....
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