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The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » The little darlings » » See The Flea, and enjoy some AAAAART! (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

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Potty the Pirate
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I love the word "abstemious", only because it contains each vowel in the English language, in order, once and only once. There is another word which also contains the vowels only once, in order. Why should such a word spring to mind?
Seriously, though, it seems that Magic Santa and JoJo aren't enamoured with my style? If you have any comments, please, this is the place to make them. I don't take offense, and would genuinely like to know what you guys, especially, think? I respect the opinions of everyone here at the Café, even though I don't always share them. You can be sure that nothing said here (about my work) will cause any ill-feeling whatsoever. Give it to me on the chin, I'm as keen to learn now as ever. Use any language you prefer, with the relevant %*~! where neccessary.
Can I say it any more plainly?
Thanks in advance for your candour.
Doug Smile
:)
MagicSanta
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Your costume is nice. I will say this, you are wayyyyy better than any other pirate oriented kids how magician I've seen. Your performance is what I would call practiced average, which is above most kids show performers.
Clownboy
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MagicSanta, Do you have any video's of yourself to show us how its done?
I think we would all like to see a demonstration of how you do it.


Best!

Brad
As the Frogs say "Times Fun when you're having Flies" Smile
Potty the Pirate
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....and if you have any ideas how I could improve my show to better than "practiced average", or what I may be doing wrong, they'd be most welcome...
:)
MagicSanta
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See how it goes? This fellow puts himself out there and ask for comments. Many of you line up like little girls "oh it is so pretty! I want to get one, does it come in my size?". The says he is a big boy and when told he is practiced average, compared to the bulk of kids show magicians that are unpracticed bad, now I get some dip asking for a video of me. No, I do not have a video of me working because I do not video tape the shows. Nor am I attempting to sell a DVD to a flock of sheep. Clownboy, unlike Potty I am not seeking comment or approval or anything else from the unwashed masses.

Potty, while I grant you that to some of these folks your performance is amazing, at a level they dream of reaching, in the stars! What I saw was a prop driven show with jokes that fell flat because they were not funny to kids. The Silver Scepture is a 'they see you don't' effect and you presented it more as a 'they see you react by making a funny face' effect. The first time I would have noticed the thing moving was when it hit the nose. I like the bird puppet but too much squaking from it, the reactions from the kids was far less than I would expect to see. I'm not sure why the drawing board puppet was used at all other than you have it and might as well toss it in, after all it is a prop show. The best use of that device I've seen is in a library show where a book talks and that is how the theme was introduced. The art routine existed to support the bigger wands so it was thin. By the way, do you drive a semi to your shows? Then there is The Flea, a lovely item, the reaction to expense seemed quite a bit off. I think that would play better in a family show than for kids, it was just a flat performance and the lack of reaction showed that, I've seen better reactions to an empty envelope. Your jokes, again, over the head of the kids. I've no problem if you insert jokes aimed at adults present, it is kind of fun to have mom and dad laughing while the kids sit puzzled, to be aiming the joke to the kids and their not understanding it isn't great. Lastly the background is too busy, I'd go with a single color, it won't drown out your props that way.

So basically you have a strong character, the performance pieces don't reflect the character, your presentations are pretty much store bought. If I was you I'd look at what you can perform and try to see how it applies to the pirate theme and toss out those that do not then write a script for a pirate show rather than a pirate doing a magic show.
Potty the Pirate
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Thanks, Magic Santa - that's all great advice, and I genuinely appreciate it. I will consider your points carefully, as there is much of merit, and on every point I know where you're coming from. The show I chose for the DVD isn't my standard show, I do have dozens of specific pirate-themed routines, as well as a full pirate story show. There is a reason for the routines I included, and that will become clear to those who see the "explanation" part should they invest in the DVD. Two of the routines were very new to me, I'd only been using The Flea and "Painting Competition" for 2 weeks before filming - there was a reason for that too.
So thanks, Magic Santa, for your time and opinion.
Potty Smile
MagicSanta
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You are welcome. You are far ahead of most performers I'd just like to see the character drive the show more.
Clownboy
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Hey MagicSatan - I was just asking if you had a video. No need to get all nasty
about it. You obviously are an expert at this sort of thing so maybe you could teach us something. Who are we to question you "The Great Evil One".
As the Frogs say "Times Fun when you're having Flies" Smile
Mumblemore
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With friends like Magic Satan, who needs critics? Seriously, we need to lighten up and take this all a little less seriously. When he lightens up on the rhetoric, our fiendish friend makes some great points, and I know "the devil is in the details." But let's come to grips with our demons on this board, and offer constructive criticism (as in the later part of the post), rather than mere "pitch fork" prodding, as in the first part.
Mumblemore
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To get back to the real subject, when and where can we see Potty's DVD? I think the character's consistent and funny and that the "prop-driven" criticism is overdone, because invariably, whoever makes it thinks that they're "talent-driven" and can do a brilliant 30 minutes on the spur of the moment with a thumb tack and rubber band. As in my profession, academia, critics are often trying to refocus the attention on themselves.

Potty has been a generous colleague, answering PMs and thread queries, posting routines and comments (and always with an original/creative take), and generally encouraging. His YouTube stuff is very well done (I laughed out loud at the Silver Sceptre) and now he's shown yet again how generous he is by replying graciously to Magic Santa's sarcasm. I don't even know Potty (never met the guy; don't know his given name), nor live on the same continent. But he gets it done and as an advanced beginner at this point (40-45 shows under my belt), I need models like him to learn from on character development, timing, comic pace, show organization and scripting, and technique. Potty, you're the pottiest.

Where do I get the DVD? More of us need to follow your generous and collaborative example.
Potty the Pirate
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Thaks, Mumblemore. My "other" name is Doug - but call me Potty. I've decided to completely re-edit the DVD, as the first edit was my very first attempt. I messed up the soundtrack some. I also have to film the Explanation, and have the printing organised. My guess is about 6 weeks before it's ready.
Thanks again for all the great input,
Potty Smile
keeblem
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I think magicsanta had a couple points - however I didn't think they were put in a very constructive way. Some of the jokes weren't that funny - and the lack of reaction did prove this.

Also, a show shouldn't be prop driven. BUT, I do think you need to show that the bookers are getting some kind of value. I remember reading somewhere that a guy did a fantastic show with just some rubber bands and a sponge balls, but he didn't get much work because there was no perceived value by the bookers. So he got a rabbit production and then the work came flooding in. Whether or not this is a true story, it does highlight an interesting point.

Finally, I don't agree with everything Doug does or says, but he tirelessly gives a lot of input to the magic Café for the benefit of others. I certainly can't be bothered to upload a video of my performance just to be knocked down by a bunch of grumpy old men. He contantly puts himself up in the firing line and takes all critisism on the chin. For that he should be applauded.

Finally, in my experience anyone who puts forward their opininion in a "nasty" or unhelpful way are usually a) jealous b)insecure or c) just plainly don't know what their talking about.

Mark
Chance Wolf
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Potty,
Wow, your responses are a true lesson in civility!
Let's make a new, yet non official, rule in the Café.
You must post a 2 minute or more demo of your own act before posting criticism of others acts.
Will this ever happen?
Unlikely but it sure would VALIDATE the opinions of some.
Hang in there Potty!
Chance
Creator of Wacky Wolf Productions & Fine Collectibles

A DECADE of building Magic and we're just getting started!

http://www.wolfsmagic.com
Potty the Pirate
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Well, you see, I could have gotten upset at Magic Santa, and he'd never have bothered to take the time out to give me his actual opinion. Except that anyhow, I never get angry about this kind of stuff. In fact, I think he's given me a rather harsh critique, but that's what I wanted.
Of course, Santa's view and mine are very different. And I have some difficulty imagining a magic show that wasn't "prop driven"? There aren't very many tricks that don't involve props, as we need physical objects to demonstrate most magic. But as props are pretty much essential to magicians, I like to ensure mine are bright and fun.
But what he's pointed out are all the things that folks are likely to take issue with, and that's SO valuable to know. And it means I can go away and consider how to improve my show.
It's common in the UK for folks to be quite rude, in a light-hearted way. I don't think Magic Santa was doing any more than that.....
;)
zimsalabim
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Potty I do a pirate themed show as well and I enjoyed your stuff a lot especially the idea of the silver sceptre sword. That is a lot of fun. As to everything else I honestly cannot say that every single joke I do is a laugh riot for the kids. I like it when they groan at the stuff and yes they do that as you well know. Doing kids shows here and over there can be vERY different. I know as I have been lucky enough to present my show to both kids from here in the states as well as children form the UK I live in Orlando and we have many visitors from the UK and I do a lot of shows for the children from there. Its a different dynamic at least in my experience but still a lot of fun. If I was to say anything about your style it would be YOU don't seem to be having fun. I honestly believe that is a contagious thing with the kids. Keep up the good work its a blast isn't it?
Joe Zimmer

"The Second Greatest Magician in the World"

Who is the Greatest? Everybody else! Borrowed with respect from the late Great Eddie Fechter Owner of the Forks Hotel

Zimsalabim

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Clownboy
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Doug I got to tell yah that I thought you did a fine job on your routines. Sure, we all have room for improvement but it was very good in my opinion. My pastor once told me that if you stop growing then you start rotting. Good words to live by for all of us.

I must say that I would LOVE to see your character do the Picto-Chango routine. Maybe change it so that you both draw Pirates... How much fun that would be.
Your character affords a lot of variations and I Love that about "Potty".

Keep up the good work and Thanks for sharing with us!

Brad
As the Frogs say "Times Fun when you're having Flies" Smile
Potty the Pirate
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Brad, thanks for your kind words - they are also welcome Smile I have Gene Anderson's "Picto Transpo", which is excellent - it's prety much the same as "Picto-Chango", I think. However, I rarely use it, as a friend who works locally uses it a lot, so I promised to only use mine on the odd occasion. It it the obvious replacement for Adair's "Painting Competition" when you have an older crowd. Very strong magic, and nice and easy Smile
Your post made me immediately "picture" a pastiche of the sideshow attraction that offers to dress folks up and take phoney vintage photos.....how about first getting a girl, (or possibly a mum) from the audience, and dressing them up in full pirate gear (or whatever costume you choose). Then, she and the entertainer draw each other. The transpo effect delivers a big kick in the pants magic-wise, and the routine finishes with a photograph being taken with a clown camera?
What else could we do?
;)
cardone
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When I started doing a more elaborate stage show for kids parties I started commanding a high fee ... and I mean high... I don't always book the fancy show packages but I do book them ... Nice large props and a curtain stage set up makes the person's home into a mini theatre ... people know where their money went....into the show. I use a lot of skill oriented routines to highlight my ability and my theatre training takes care of the showmanship ...this makes a great product to sell to the clients .....Potty has a great show and good taste on what he buys to put into his show ...he act is an easy sell to his clients.
formfoam
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Potty, I like your show!
Clownboy
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You are right, its the Picto Transpo I was thinking of. OOps, Sorry Gene!

Adding Costumes would be a blast even for the Children. Wouldn't have to be elaborate or expensive but would definitely add another level of excitement to your audience. And if you can find a very straight laced person to participate with you that the crowd all knows you will have people stitches. I for one would get a kick out of it anyway!

Brad
As the Frogs say "Times Fun when you're having Flies" Smile
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