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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » New to magic? » » Fear of performing coming back (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Owen Thomas
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A fear of performing has come back too me, I havent performed in front of people for some time. Is this natural? Is there ways to remove this type of fear?
MattSconce
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I was feeling the same fear when I recently went to a halloween party where I did not know anyone. I made sure my LOOPS were with me and decided I was going to perform for some people. I felt the tension in my chest the first time I performed for a group of teens, but after that, the fear was gone. I performed several other times throughout the night with no fear, and now I feel much better about it. My advice is to get into a situation where you can perform a lot of times in a row, and work the fear out of you. Smile Good Luck! -Matt Sconce
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Gill Rogers
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Not having performed magic publicly I may be speaking out of turn. My work, however, does require "performing" and I can say that two things have helped the most. First and foremost is preparation. Prepare, prepare, prepare, and then prepare some more. Know your material so well, and be so comfortable with it, that it is second nature to you. That way, you lose any confidence issues that would otherwise exist. Think about it, would you rather be in front of a group thinking "this is going well" or thinking "ohmygodihopeidontscrewup".

Second, get out and perform. The nervousness is there for a reason, partially because "I've never done this before...". Thus, the more you do it, the less likelly you will be to concentrate on what you haven't done. Familiarity will make you more comfortable, and the more comfortable you are, the less intimidated you will be by the whole process.

Know your routines, know what the dangers are and have "outs", and know your audience and take them into consideration.
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DomKabala
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Don’t think that there will ever come a time when you are not nervous about a performance because it (nervousness) never really goes away. I don't care what anybody says otherwise, even the pros get nervous. The difference is they know how to handle it and once it is addressed and handled the ice is broken and the rest is history.

Start off with a small performance in front of a small crowd just like you did when you first began. Have some water handy (or chew some gum) to quench that cotton mouth that usually accompanies a first performance. Relax. Beyonce often imagines herself as someone other than herself singing, it helps her.

The most important way to overcome nervousness to actually and thoroughly enjoy performing. If you don’t truly enjoy doing magic then this is something that will come across in your performance.

Good luck and have fun!

Cardamagically,
Dom.
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BrianMillerMagic
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If you've been away from performing for a while (and "a while" is different for different people) then it is perfectly normal to feel nervous because it is essentially a new experience again. However if you have performed before, then it shouldn't take much to get back into a comfortable rhythm. Good luck man!
The Amazing Noobini
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Owen, did you mean that you have recently performed and noticed that you are more nervous than before, or did you mean that you are sitting for instance at home, getting worried thinking about how your next potential performance might go without having actually performed recently?

Just curious as the two seems like very different things. Myself I have never really planned any performances so my own nervousness has always been of the first kind. A complete surprise to me when the hands suddenly start shaking by themselves.

I suppose the other kind of nervousness could be more thought of as anticipation and a wish to have things go really well. A kind of pressure that builds as your big night approaches.

If these are indeed two separate ailments then they probably require different cures. Well... just thinking out loud here. No simple solutions from me, I'm afraid. I lack the experience.
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JamesTong
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Quote:
On 2008-10-27 14:59, BrianMillerMagic wrote:
If you've been away from performing for a while (and "a while" is different for different people) then it is perfectly normal to feel nervous because it is essentially a new experience again. However if you have performed before, then it shouldn't take much to get back into a comfortable rhythm. Good luck man!


I agree with Brian.

Perhaps you can define "not performing for a while". If that period is a few months to a year or two or three, then it is a long while.

If you have been in magic for some time, then getting back to it should not be a problem.
Metatron
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Hi Owen,

Yes, I would consider that fairly normal.

I suggest you take a trick you are comfortable with and just perform it one-on-one with a family member or friend. Do this a few times with different tricks. Slowly increase the number of tricks and size of audience. But start with people you are comfortable with. Then work up to strangers. This will help quiet the nerves and build confidence.


Metatron
BrianMillerMagic
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On 2008-10-27 15:52, Metatron wrote:But start with people you are comfortable with. Then work up to strangers.


This particular statement I disagree with. By "people you are comfortable with" I would assume you mean family and friends, but those are often the most difficult performances to give. I think even most working pros would agree with that as well. When you perform for strangers, there's no risk of feeling embarrassed if the performance doesn't go well because you aren't likely to ever talk to or see them again. There's nothing and no one to have to answer to.
Dynamike
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Just do the same thing you did the first time. You started off before, just do it again.
Lash
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I always get nervous before every performance. I think it's normal. It actually keeps you on your toes as long as you control them and not the other way around. The best thing for me is to start off with things that I am completely 100% comfortable with and confident in. This helps you focus more on your performance and gets you off to a good start. After you do two or three effects, it gets much better and it's smooth sailing from there. Hope this helps.

Jared
magicalaurie
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A related thread:

http://www.themagiccafe.com/forums/viewt......rum=3&26

Best wishes to you, Owen.
mrsmiles
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Owen,
do effects that you know inside out - stuff that is automatic and you KNOW cannot go wrong. If there's something that you have to pause even a beat to think about when practicing at home, DON'T DO IT! If you have to, throw in a couple of self workers (or even make everything you do self workers).
The above is so that you can have maximum mental concentration placed on presentation. It will help you get into the groove - and moving from 'anxiety' to actual 'enjoyment' when performing. The anxiety will be acentuated rather than reduced if you are not 100% confident with the material.
This is just temporary advice. Once you've done this a few times, and your confidence has taken a boost, you can raise your routines up a bar. At bookings I start the evening by leaving out my most challenging stuff out(which in my case is only intermediate level) for the first 3 or 4 tables because I'm 'cold' and slightly anxious myself; I then throw in my slightly harder stuff from then on.

Just accept that nerves will always kick in initially - you'll move to being less anxious to being just slightly edgy at the beginning of an evening like me. If your nerves disappear alltogether in future - get back to me and tell me your secret!

Good luck!!
mrsmiles
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Metatron
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Quote:
On 2008-10-27 16:02, BrianMillerMagic wrote:

This particular statement I disagree with. By "people you are comfortable with" I would assume you mean family and friends, but those are often the most difficult performances to give. I think even most working pros would agree with that as well. ...


I would agree to some extent, BUT if most magicians think back to when they STARTED, I think that most performed first for family and/or friends. I can remember (perhaps you can too). I practiced my chops and tried it out on my brothers, sister, mother, dad, friends at school, perhaps other magician friends at a club ... I think even most working pros would agree with that!

You for example started at what, 4 or 5 years old, did you run out and book a show or start by performing for people you didn't even know, this I really doubt. It is the same if you 5 or 50 first do it with someone your comfortable with.

Just my opinion. No offense meant. Smile

-Metatron
BrianMillerMagic
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No offense taken of course! Yes, when I first started I performed for friends, but in my personal experience it's because those were the only people I had available to me to show stuff too. But as I'm typing this, I suppose someone getting back into magic for the first time in a while would also only have friends/family to show stuff to. I guess what I should have said is to try to get out of performing for friends/family as quickly as possible, because those performances tend to be exceedingly difficult and pressure-filled.

The reason I made that point was to refute the statement "people you are comfortable with" since I think this is misleading. The people you are most comfortable around tend to be the most uncomfortable to perform to. I think I'm making more sense now; tell me if I'm not! Smile
Hansel
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That feeling is completely normal...so start to practice and combat that nervs with a secure presentation...once you start, the rest of the show run very smooth!
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Matt Watts
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Cut out eyes from magazines and put them in your room.That way someone is always watching.practice looking at the eyes while you perform and you will get good at audience connection.Great advise from Daryl.
Owen Thomas
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On 2008-11-01 19:17, Matt Watts wrote:
Cut out eyes from magazines and put them in your room.That way someone is always watching.practice looking at the eyes while you perform and you will get good at audience connection.Great advise from Daryl.

Sounds like good idea? but must remember to take down the "eyes" when you have guests over. lol (might think your a wierdo)
MikeyM71
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Quote:
On 2008-10-27 12:41, MattSconce wrote:
I was feeling the same fear when I recently went to a halloween party where I did not know anyone. I made sure my LOOPS were with me and decided I was going to perform for some people. I felt the tension in my chest the first time I performed for a group of teens, but after that, the fear was gone. I performed several other times throughout the night with no fear, and now I feel much better about it. My advice is to get into a situation where you can perform a lot of times in a row, and work the fear out of you. Smile Good Luck! -Matt Sconce
Good advice. Cute kid Smile
<BR>Mikey M.
chidzuyo
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Quote:
On 2008-10-27 16:02, BrianMillerMagic wrote:

This particular statement I disagree with. By "people you are comfortable with" I would assume you mean family and friends, but those are often the most difficult performances to give.


I agree. They are the most difficult audience but they are the ones that are not going to laugh at you and make you feel embarassed. At least mine won't. The reason why I say they're difficult is because my family and close friends will not hesitate to disagree, interupt and even grab my hands or props. They're the tybe of audience you wouldn't want to have, but that's exactly the kind of practise you need. You'd want to make all the mistakes at home and have bad-behaving audience before you perform formally in front of strangers.
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