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Cory Landels
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Hey all,

After four failed attempts at getting a restaurant gig, someone has finally decided to give me a try. My first gig is tonight, because tonight is the kids eat free night. I am very excited, but also a little overwhelmed - not to mention nervous. This will be my first time ever performing in a restaurant situation, and I'm not quiote sure what to expect. I phoned the manager today, and he told me to come in around five. He also said that he was going to get the waiters to ask the tables if it was okay before I did my thing. I have just a few questions...

-How long should I spend at each table?
-Which tables should I avoid?
-What should I wear?
-How should I introduce myself?
-When should I arrive?
-How should I accept a free meal?
-What do I say when I leave a table?
-What do I say to the manager when I arrive?
-What do I say to the manager when I leave?
-What if it isn't going well at all?

As you can see, that probably isn't just a few questions. Smile

Here is my trick list so far...

-Bigger Finish
-Sponge Balls
-Lucky Nickel
-Coin Routine

Is that enough? I would say that each trick lasts about 3 minutes.

GAH, I am so nervous!!! HELP!
Danny Diamond
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Quote:
On 2007-08-06 14:55, Cory Landels wrote:
-How long should I spend at each table?
-Which tables should I avoid?
-What should I wear?
-How should I introduce myself?
-When should I arrive?
-How should I accept a free meal?
-What do I say when I leave a table?
-What do I say to the manager when I arrive?
-What do I say to the manager when I leave?
-What if it isn't going well at all?


Those are a LOT of important questions to be searching for answers for, just hours before your first restaurant gig.
You don't drown by falling in the water;

you drown by staying there.



- Edwin Louis Cole
MichaelKent
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Congrats and good luck! There are many books and resources on this type of stuff, but since you're in a quick fix situation, let me try to answer some of these.

Quote:
-How long should I spend at each table?

Generally, I'd say 5-10 minutes. Depends on the situation. The best time is right after they order their food.
Quote:
-Which tables should I avoid?

When I used to work restaurants, I would normally avoid people sitting by themselves and couples who were engaged in conversation. I'd always perform for groups of three or more people first.
Quote:
-What should I wear?

Whatever you're comfortable in that allows you to work. I don't think a magician always has to wear a tie, but some at the Café may disagree with that. Many magicians have a "one step above" rule, wherein the magician dresses slightly better than the patrons to distinguish him or herself as someone important.
Quote:
-How should I introduce myself?

Tell them who you are and what you would like to do. Don't force the magic on anyone!
Quote:
-When should I arrive?

5-10 minutes before start time.
Quote:
-How should I accept a free meal?

Never until after you're done working.
Quote:
-What do I say when I leave a table?

Thank them for coming to the restaurant.
Quote:
-What do I say to the manager when I arrive?

Make sure you communicate if he or she needs you at any certain table throughout the night to just say the word.
Quote:
-What do I say to the manager when I leave?

Thank them and try to get some feedback. This is where you work on securing a lasting run at the restaurant!
Quote:
-What if it isn't going well at all?

I'm sure it will.

Best of luck!

MK
Cory Landels
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Thank you!
dominik
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Cory, if you can entertain 10 minutes per table, that should be enaugh. The nervousness fades away as you get good reactions.

Since most of your questions have already been answered properly by Michael, there is only one more thing I would like to say:

Good Luck!
Stevethomas
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A few other technical, but often overlooked things in a situation such as "Kid's Night". If it's a buffet (like Pizza Hut Kid's Night), you'll have less time and more distractions during the performing. If it's a "finger food" situation, such as pizza, you won't want kid's (or adults from what I've encountered) hands all over things like sponge balls or anything that can get dirty or stained or will hold germs (that's just me, my wife's a teacher!).

I agree with the above post...it is a little late in the situation to be asking questions like these! I hope the fact that you're going to be there has been communicated, by management, to the service staff. It's best to have them on your side, so they don't look at you like somebody who's out to steal their tips. If they refer you to a specific table, be sure to return the favor by giving them some tips at the end of the night.

I also hope this isn't your first restaurant gig, but it sounds like it is.

Steve
Magic_Steve
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Quote:
On 2007-08-06 15:04, Danny Diamond wrote:
Quote:
On 2007-08-06 14:55, Cory Landels wrote:
-How long should I spend at each table?
-Which tables should I avoid?
-What should I wear?
-How should I introduce myself?
-When should I arrive?
-How should I accept a free meal?
-What do I say when I leave a table?
-What do I say to the manager when I arrive?
-What do I say to the manager when I leave?
-What if it isn't going well at all?


Those are a LOT of important questions to be searching for answers for, just hours before your first restaurant gig.


My thoughts exactly Danny. With such a lack of research, I'll be surprised if he gets the gig. I hope he does, seriously. But, that's an enormous mistake to be making, especially on an audition night.

Hell, it doesn't even seem like he has any set routines! That's even worse! When I was first starting out (and I'm not an expert by any means), I had the answers to similar questions weeks, if not a couple months beforehand. Maybe that's why I've been halfway successful, or not? Who knows, but I know one thing.

"If you fail to prepare, you prepare to fail"

Best.
Steve
patrick flanagan
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Cory,
If the table is enjoying your performance, be certain to suggest that they comment to the manager or hostess. This will give the manager an indication that things went well and he would be wise to keep you there.
And after tonight, I suggest you start looking for the answers to your questions.
They are good questions that have been covered here many times. Finding the answers will help make you a better entertainer and help you keep your gig.
Best of Luck!
Patrick
MagicSanta
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I'd say you are not prepared and jumping the gun but then I'd be accused of stomping your little dreams into the ground so I'll try to answer your questions, just choose the answers you like best from all the responses, that is what everyone else does:

-How long should I spend at each table?
A. Five to ten minutes but leave once the food arrives. I'm not familiar with your list of routines but if you wiz through 'em in three minutes the answer is three minutes.

-Which tables should I avoid?
A. The ones that say "no thank you" when asked if they would like to see magic.

-What should I wear?
A. Like you are going someplace better later on. Do not wear a tshirt and a blank expression.

-How should I introduce myself?
A. "Hi, I'm Corey the magician, would you like to see some magic courtesy of Mr. Toads Pizza and clam house?"

-When should I arrive?
A. With enough time to prepare properly.

-How should I accept a free meal?
A. Say Thank You.

-What do I say when I leave a table?
A. say Thank You.

-What do I say to the manager when I arrive?
A. Assuming he knows you are coming say "I'm here Biff!"

-What do I say to the manager when I leave?
A. Say "Thanks for having me Biff, see you later, good night"

-What if it isn't going well at all?
A. Say to yourself "I should have listened to those dream crushers on the care and realized they were trying to give me good advice....darn it all"
Cory Landels
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Ha ha, thanks for that MagicSanta!

This was not something I was expecting at all. I didn't think that I would be asked to come tonight, I should have been better prepared... So enough you dream crushers! Smile
Dannydoyle
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Do yourself a favor and stop reading right now.

Seriously. You are not prepared, and will not be any more prepared by reading any more posts.

Go with what you have, act like a courtious person, get the gig.

Act as other pros you have seen. If you havn't seen one, then act like you would like to be treated.

Then come back, hopefully prior to 2 hours before the gig, and ask again.

Best of luck to you.
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Ted Danger
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Hi Cory,

It's to late for my advice, but I'd love to hear how it went.
Do you know how to get to Carnegie Hall?

Regards, Ted
"One may say the eternal mystery of the world is its comprehensibility." Albert E.
Stevethomas
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Ted,

Sure..Carnegie Hall...hmm.....whatever you do, don't practice..wait till the last minute and it'll come to you, MAGICALLY.

Steve
Stevethomas
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Cory,

Nothing personal, but how old are you? Sometimes It's difficult to be taken seriously by adults in a performing situation if you're very young.

Steve
Dannydoyle
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When you guys talk about this thread later, I just want to point out that it was for once NOT ME saying these things! (agreeing completly, but NOT SAYING LOL.)
Danny Doyle
<BR>Semper Occultus
<BR>In a time of universal deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act....George Orwell
Cory Landels
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Guys,

It went absolutely amazing! I am coming back every Monday, and possibly Fridays and Saturdays. All of you who tried to bring me down with your posts, nice try... didn't work. For all of you who actually gave me some advice, thank you!

BTW, I am only 14... What where you doing as a job when you where that age? Smile
Magic_Steve
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Quote:
On 2007-08-06 23:36, Cory Landels wrote:
Guys,

It went absolutely amazing! I am coming back every Monday, and possibly Fridays and Saturdays. All of you who tried to bring me down with your posts, nice try... didn't work. For all of you who actually gave me some advice, thank you!

BTW, I am only 14... What where you doing as a job when you where that age? Smile


Arrogance isn't a nice trait to have, and you'll get thrown out on your ass if you have that attitude with anyone in the restaurant. As for the people trying to put you down, it's called honesty. If you can't deal with it, then get out of the magic industry.

If you re-read your original post, you'll see how unprepared you were just hours before a gig. To be honest, I'm surprised no one was that harsh...myself included.

Congrats on the gig, but lose the attitude. It won't get you far, and it won't impress anyone.

Best.
Steve
Cory Landels
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Sorry,

It really hurts my feelings to be called arrogant. I really hate people who are arrogant, and being called arrogant really makes me feel like crap. That's not how I was trying to come off... I was feeling proud of myself for making this happen all by myself, and I thought that you guys would appreciate that too.
MagicSanta
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The problem is everyone is right and you may have gone to a place that really had low standards. Just imagine what you could do if you were prepared? You are arrogant and after seeing all those that gave you dead on good advice I knew you would do well. Want to know why? It is because you were performing for people who wouldn't know a good table working if they fell out of the sky and landed in their soup. In a room full of non artist a guy who can draw a flower is king.

The good news is because of your response I will be adding you to the list of those not worthy of my time. Oh, when I was fourteen I ran two produce stands for a scumbag named Tommy outside of San Francisco.
Eric Leclerc
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Keep at it Cory.....

Whatever you do KEEP THAT JOB.... you will meet lots of different people and it will prepare you for "real" shows. In a restaurant, you get to perfect a trick and/or routine and see what works and what doesn't. Go in every Monday and give it your all!!

One tip:
when you leave the table say "thanks so much for letting me perform for you tonight, if you like what you saw please tell your server or even better the manager, this is my first magic gig and I want to be back next week!! thanks guys!!"
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