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Wayne Schulatz
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I recently came across an author who repeatedly states that, "shouting is not entertainment." He discourages getting the kids to shout during the show at all. A specific example he gives is holding up a red silk and calling it blue. Of course the kids will shout back the correct color, but this is not an entertaining transaction.

The author also states that, "When someone is entertained, his or her everyday emotions are diverted. This thought diversion could be to change their emotion to say..., sadness, joy... excitement, calmness etc." Could it be argued that when children shout at the performer they are entertained based on this definition?

Then there are some authors who stress interactions per minute. If you have many interactions in the show, this will raise its entertainment value. Going back to the silk example above, one could argue that this bit is STRONG entertainment because it empowers the children with knowledge. But is the shouting an appropriate interaction?

Maybe in the end it just comes down to your own character and style. Would it be entertaining for one magician to encourage shouting where it wouldn't be for another? If the performer is an aggressive or confrontational character, it almost seems mandatory for the kids to shout at least a little bit. So what's the deal?

Is shouting entertainment?
harris
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Shouting can be part of entertainment.

It is not the only part. I used to be scared of silence during my program. At the right time it is indeed golden.

As you wrote, things depend on the entertainer, the venue and make up of the audience. At some of my library programs I have done a warm up starting 5 to 15 minutes prior to show time. (it is done silently/drawn from my years as "Mime over Matter"..79-85)

Sometimes after a great response..I break the silence and tell the kids..NO Laughing or reacting..the show HAS NOT started yet.look at the clock and say...it will start in 3 HOURS (actually 3 minutes..you can probably guess the response from some of the audience.)

I do agree that an entertainer should go for a broad range of emotions. (Fear, sadness as well as broad comedy, joy and and laughter)

Yes I few days ago, I picked up a Clifford and called him the big blue dog...big red chicken..etc....

Can a stick be entertaining...yes as well as the Schtick that fits you and your audience....
Harris Deutsch aka dr laugh
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jondark445
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I personally find it entertaining when I should at a birthday child. I usually should loudly enough and long enough to elicit tears. Entertains the heck out of me.

--JD
Ken Northridge
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I’m not sure I know the author you are talking about but I think they may have a point. Parents may not appreciate this. Shouting may have its place though. Allowing the kids to shout will let them ‘get it all out’ and set up the quiet moments. Having said that, I don’t ask the kids to shout. I simply say, “Lets all say it together. You don’t have to shout, just say it like you mean it.” This gets the same response without the parents having to cover their ears. I think I got that from Duane Laflin.

I’m pretty sure the other author you are referencing with the “interactions per minute” is Silly Billy. Since having your audience fully involved in the show is you job, this makes a lot of sense to me as well.

A final thought: It is easy to get kids to shout, the real skill is getting them to be silent. And as the entertainer, you should be the director of this.
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Wayne Schulatz
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Let me clarify a bit.

I don't necessarily mean saying something like, "Shout it as loud as you can!" I am talking about any situation that causes shouting. This includes tricks like Run Rabbit Run and ABC Stung. Many sucker tricks naturally encourage shouting. Any routine where magic happens and the magician doesn't notice will encourage shouting as well.
Ken Northridge
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In that case, half of my show would not be considered entertainment by this author. I personally feel parents love to see this kind of interaction as long as the entertainer (the director) knows WHEN and HOW to calm the kids down and keep them under control.
"Love is the real magic." -Doug Henning
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Potty the Pirate
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If the kids shout and roar with laughter non-stop for a full hour, you've done a good job. Any parent in the World will tell you.....
If the shouting and roaring is interspersed with complete silence, the parents will think you are a Superstar!
:)
Red Shadow
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Whatever keeps the children watching you for a full hour is the right answer.

I personally encourage shouting to a point. There are the occasions when the children start chanting and I have several tactics to stop that from the get-go. But having the children shout out the correct colour of a silk is vital to the entertainment factor when working with kids.
You are giving them the feeling that they are smarter than the adult. They love that, and it will keep them sat down watching you because they want to feel that empowerment over and over again. This is one of the key tactics into sustaining my show for one or two full hours.

I would bet serious money that the magician who doesn't like shouting only performs 30 minute shows. That's because he cannot keep their attention for any longer that that.

Steve
jackturk
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I GUARANTEE a room full of screaming, howling, laughing, happy
children with my family shows.

That doesn't mean I don't work to create a wide range of moods
and moments. In fact, that's critical... you have to create a
roller coaster experience.

Nevertheless, parents and kids won't recall that brief flash
of magical wonderment when a miracle occurred....

Nope...

What they'll remember is when they fell off their chairs laughing
and screaming their heads off.

That's not shouting for shouting's sake. That's creating the
response I want from the audience when I want it.

--Jack
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"How To Make $25,000 a Year Doing Birthday Parties Part-Time"
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stempleton
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I agree with many of the posts here...your show is a sliver of a moment that the children can "let loose," and they appreciate that. Several well-worn techniques like the magician losing control or the "don't see" allow the children to be empowered, which doesn't happen often in their everyday lives. Whomever this author is may prove the old adage "those who can, do...those who can't... teach"
drosenbe0813
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I fall into the 'interactions per minute' camp...and that includes plenty of shouting. but I also do a 3 minute piece during my show that is a very involving story about my grandmother, that has the kids sitting totally enraptured and silent. It's a control issue. I use the "I can't say Balloon" business, but after a few back and forths with the kids, I turn to the adults and say "I don't do any more tricks, I just argue for another 20 minutes", which gets a laugh from the adults, but also shows that I know exactly what I'm doing and am in control. then I do my next effect.
It also depends upon the age of the kids. Younger kids like (love?) the involvement of shouting and pointing out things to the magician. I also don't do sucker tricks in the 'gotcha' way. Either I am the blowoff (e.g. something ends up on my back) or I blow off the ending with a positive message.
TonyB2009
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I think that any author that seriously maintains that you don't want your audience to make noise is someone who is struggling with his own lack of a sense of humour. Of course your show should not consist of an hour of shouting. You need variety, pace, and a range of emotions. But if you are not getting good solid shouts and laughs, then (unless you are really good and really in control) you should very carefully at your act. It needs work.
TheAmbitiousCard
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Getting kids to shout is EASY!!!
It's overused when the magician has not come up with anything better to do and just resort to getting kids to shout.

A little goes a long way.

I think TonyB's post says it all.
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Matthew W
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Shouting is interacting. Involvement and interaction is key to a good performance. You go to a footbal game, baseball game, hockey game, etc, and there is nothing but shouting.

When I do the blooming blossom or hippity hop rabbits, all the children are shouting, laughing, pointing and having fun. Would it be better that they are sitting quietly raising their hands waiting for their turn to tell you its behind you or to turn them around.

All the time kids are told to sit quietly and raise their hands. This is their chance to be kids and do what they do best.
-Matt
John C
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WHAT'S WRONG WITH SHOUTING!!!!!!!!!?
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magicone
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I believe the "no shouting" author is from UK. I'm reading his book now and have found it very good.

I still get the kids to shout Smile I'm with Matt on this one, at least here in the USA.
drosenbe0813
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After re-reading the first post, I have some fundamental disagreement with the idea that 'shouting' is not diverting the childrens' emotions. The children shout because they see something that the magician doesn't, or they think they know something that the magician doesn't. This is a very POWERFUL emotion. This is used all the time in movies and television. I've been watching the series 24 on DVD, and it always seems that there is mole in the organization that Jack Bauer works for. After the latest one was revealed (to the audience, not the onscreen characters) I actually was yelling at the TV, "why don't you guys do better background checks"!! Haven't you been to a suspense movie and wanted to yell at the screen, "Don't go in the house!!!"? Well, children don't have the internal control to prevent them from voicing their emotions. If anything, our shows allow them to release this pent up emotion, that they can't anywhere else. I do believe that some magicians overplay this and have an entire show of sucker tricks. As my last post implied (and others) you have to balance all of the possible emotions. But don't tell me not to get the kids shouting!!
magicgeorge
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Quote:
On 2009-06-30 18:36, TonyB2009 wrote:
I think that any author that seriously maintains that you don't want your audience...


I don't really think we can comment on the author as we just have Mr Schulatz's interpretation of what the author was saying to go on.

Can someone reference which book yall talking about...
magicone
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It's accurate as I just read that same part of the book. One is a UK author and the other from NY. Both have children's books. I don't think it would hurt either to mention them by name but they both post here so I'll let them chime in if they wish to debate this.
BIGmagiclV
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Making children shout for the sake of shouting is not entertainment and doesn't mean you are having a good show. The shouting has to be a side effect of something else. Just getting kids mad at you or yelling is just noise.
I do agree that it is one of the few times kids get to let off steam but it needs to be funneled into a productive way that furthers the trick you are doing. It can't be the meat of the trick itself.
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