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alexhui
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Hong Kong
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I practice a particular move until I get it nearly perfect. And I always link a few moves together into a routine and practice it.

Moreover, whenever and wherever I am, I am holding a deck. This forces me to practice.

Alex
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Linds
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Melbourne, Australia
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Quote:
On 2003-07-24 01:47, Ashkenazi The Pretty Good wrote:
I'm looking for a "card work-out:" a series of shuffles, passes, flourishes, whatever.

Something I can do as a sort of card calisthenics: just a routine.



I don't know whether this is the kind of thing that you are looking for, but here goes. In chapter one of the Royal Road, just before the tricks section, Hugard and Braue included a routine that drilled all the overhand shuffle controls that they taught in the chapter. It seems to be the only one.

I guess that using that as a model, with a bit of thought you could develop this kind of thing to suit your personal requirements.
Cheers
Linds

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Mark Martinez
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Wisconsin
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I actually looked at the routines that I do most often and wrote down the slights that are required in all of the routines.

Then I took that list and made a single routine (it doesn't have to make sence) that I with do over and over. Of course doing it this way has two things about it...

You must know the slights already, otherwise just practice them over and over...

The second and best thing about doing them this way it that you get to practice the whole sleight, not just the move itself, but how to get into it, and how to get out of it...
:goodluck:
Magically,
Mark

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nelly
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PremiataForneria;
(This is going to sound weird, but I not only practiced in front of a mirror, but also in front of my friend's cat. That's right...a cat!! The cat naturally followed the movements of my hands while I tried performing a "move". When the cat was no longer able to follow along, I was ready to perform for a "live" audience.)

That is the best and funniest answer to any question ever. Nice one, mate
NJJ
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Filming your moves and replaying them is far better then a mirror. You can be third person observer and you can watch the whole move.

It was filming that taught me that I blink when I do pass. (BTW, my passes look great with my eyes closed)
Dennis Loomis
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1943 - 2013
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A few assorted thoughts on practice. First, understand that there is a difference between practice and rehearsal. Moves or sleights are practiced. Complete routines should be rehearsed. If you are adding a new sleight to your arsenal, you can practice it over and over. I find it most effective to be sure to practice it EVERY DAY. While learning the move, keep the mind involved. Find out what works best for you and what doesn't. When you find a key concept, stop and write it down. For example, you may find that the one handed top palm works much better if the deck has been given a downward bridge first and the cards are not perfectly flat. Make a note of that, and consistantly bridge the cards in your practice.

Doug Henning pointed out that most magicians stop practicing far too soon. It is not enough to just be able to do the move. He said that first you practice just to be able to do it. Then you keep on practicing to make the move easy to do. But you keep going to make the move a habit. You do it right EVERY time. And finally, you don't stop there; you keep working until the habit becomes beautiful.

Charlie Miller estimated that most moves will require at least 5000 repetitions before you have achieved any kind of mastery. So, if you practice a move 100 times each day, you're going to need about a month and a half of keeping that up. Of course, some are harder and some are easier.
Gene Anderson in his lectures talks about cold practice. In performance, you only get one chance to do the move. You have not just done it 10 or 20 or 90 times in a row. You have to do it right the first time. So, once you feel that you may have it down. Just pick up the cards or coin(s) or whatever and do it ONCE. Keep track of how it goes. You may be surprised to find you still have a lot of work to do. You don't have to quit practicing then... perhaps you can do a whole series of moves, once each, and keep a record of which ones are satisfactory and which ones aren't.
Finally, before you are ready to do a routine in front of an audience, you need to thoroughly rehearse the entire routine.

Karrell Fox taught me to use a tape recorder for this. The patter can be recorded onto a tape, and you then do the routine over and over with the recorder doing the talking. You will begin to integrate in your mind the moves and the words. When you've done this for a while, then try it once saying the words yourself. You may find that you don't yet have all the lines down, so go back to working with the recorder. In time, you'll find that you can do the entire routine. From that point on, you may want to just use the tape recorder once at the beginning of a practice session, and then do the patter yourself.
Dai Vernon said that a potential new magician must ask themselves if they really enjoy practicing. If they cannot honestly say that they do, they should probably find another hobby or pastime. There is just no escaping it; if you wish to get good... you MUST Practice and Rehearse.

Finally, to answer the original question. Right now, I'm preparing to shoot a video of a particular routine. It's one I've done for years, but I really want to be on top of every aspect of the shoot before I step in front of the cameras. There are 9 individual moves that I feel I want to be better at, and I practice each of them 100 times EVERY day. When I go out for my morning walk, I listen to a tape of the patter for the routine. And, I rehearse the full routine 10 times each day.

Hope this all helps. Best wishes to all.
Dennis Loomis
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theoldfort
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Practice methods?

There is a little known method that has never failed me yet -

On the seventh day after a new moon at seven minutes past midnight have a virgin slit the throat of a seven month old goat on hallowed ground. In the few moments whilst the goat's heart is still beating drink a chalice of its blood. Repeat this phrase thrice:

Minutus cantorum, minutus balorum, minutus carborata descendum pantorum

Then simply perfrom the sleight once, and once only. YOU MUST NEVER REPEAT THE SLEIGHT WITHIN SEVEN HOURS OF THIS INCANTATION OR SUNRISE WHICHEVER IS FIRST.

You will then find that you can perform the sleight flawlessly until the day you die.

If you have trouble finding a virgin try e-bay or PM me for some tips.

Regards


Ian
SEVEN
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Hey Ian, I tried it, it doesn't work...anyway I'm Lack Tosed and Tolerant

Smile



:blush:
Skeestie
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Alaska
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I always try to practice in front of a mirror...it is very important to see how the effect/sleight looks from a spectator's point of view so you don't embarrass yourself.
Ashkenazi the Pretty Good
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Northern California
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Quote:
On 2003-07-27 16:19, theoldfort wrote:
Practice methods?

There is a little known method that has never failed me yet -

On the seventh day after a new moon at seven minutes past midnight have a virgin slit the throat of a seven month old goat on hallowed ground. In the few moments whilst the goat's heart is still beating drink a chalice of its blood. Repeat this phrase thrice:

Minutus cantorum, minutus balorum, minutus carborata descendum pantorum

Then simply perfrom the sleight once, and once only. YOU MUST NEVER REPEAT THE SLEIGHT WITHIN SEVEN HOURS OF THIS INCANTATION OR SUNRISE WHICHEVER IS FIRST.

You will then find that you can perform the sleight flawlessly until the day you die.

If you have trouble finding a virgin try e-bay or PM me for some tips.

Regards


Ian


I have found chocolate milke (NOT organic) just as effective.

ATPG
------------

We could have been practicing!
Leon of PrimRose
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mayfield, new york
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Try this. When you're doing anything that only requires one hand practice one-handed cut and flourishes, back-palming, and pivots. When you're watching TV, practice some sleights and individual tricks, and when you have some spare time, practice routines.

Hope that helps. Smile
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Nick Pudar
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Many years ago, Roy Kissel gave me some great advice about practicing. He told me to practice ACTUALLY DOING what the audience is supposed to think you are doing. So, if it is a coin pass, actually practice really taking the coin. Practice this for 15 minutes a day for about a month. Then work on the sleight. You will notice your bad handling immediately. When you get it to the point where YOU can't tell the difference, then no one ever will. The same applies for cards (Elmsley, bottom deal, etc...) I also greatly agree that video cameras are a marvelous aid for magicians.
Nick
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Larry Davidson
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Others have mentioned this and I'll add my support...rehearsal is EXTREMELY important. Although I've performed most of the routines in my professional repertoire thousands of times, I always rehearse all of my effects with patter prior to a gig, just as if I were performing effects for a real audience. I rehearse in front of a mirror or I just play to an invisible audience.

Here's a story you might find humorous. Not long ago, I was rehearsing in front of a mirror in my bedroom and speaking my patter out loud when my young daughter walked into the room and asked me who I was talking to. I explained that I was rehearsing. She asked me why I was talking to the mirror. When I explained that I was making believe that the mirror was the audience, she innocently asked, "What's the chance your audience will look exactly like you?" Don't you love kids' logic? Smile

Larry D.
Larry Barnowsky
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I concur with Larry D. that rehearsal is key. This should include a dress rehearsal so the props and gimmicks that are on you or on your table are in the same spot as for the actual show.
I find it very helpful for some effects to have the patter written down as a script. If you do that your delivery will be smoother and you can concentrate on the presentation more, rather than ad lib through out the performance. Also, you will have a record that you can refer to so you don't have to reinvent the wheel each time.
Consider videotaping your routine. It'll show you how you look in reality rather than the reversed image of you staring in the mirror.
Finally, the quality of practice is more important than the quantity. Practicing a coin move or a pass while watching TV will improve that move for an audience of TVs but not for a real life performance.
Larry Davidson
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Quote:
On 2003-09-09 12:12, The Original Countelmsley wrote:
I find it very helpful for some effects to have the patter written down as a script.


Another idea I agree with 100%. EVERY effect I perform is scripted.

As I've said in other posts, performing without a script, in my opinion, is like trying to drive to an unfamiliar location without using a map to guide you there.

I follow tight scripts but might add or remove a quick line for example in response to a comment someone makes. But I NEVER "jazz" with my patter for the same reason I wouldn't expect an actor to jazz with his lines in a movie or play.

Larry D.
PyroDevil
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Canada
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My best advice to you is that you should practice your tricks infront of a mirror all the time until YOU think it is ready to perform. that's the way I practice my tricks. Good Luck!


PyroDevil Smile
Joshua Lozoff
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Chapel Hill, NC
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Larry,

I love your story. Kids are so brilliant in that way.
Joshua Lozoff

joshualozoff.com
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